The AFC South might not be the best division in football, but it’s certainly one of the most competitive. Each team has won the division at least once in each of the last six seasons, but the Jacksonville Jaguars seemed poised to take control of the AFC South. A late-season surge gives the Jags a ton of momentum, while the Colts, Texans and Titans all drafted top-end quarterbacks.
AFC South Standings 
The Jaguars were sitting at 2-6 to start last season before winning seven of their last nine and winning the division at 9-8. Then, they were down 27-0 to the L.A. Chargers in the wild card round before rallying for an improbable 31-30. The season ended the following week in Kansas City with a valiant effort (27-20). With Trevor Lawrence vastly improving and Doug Pederson calling the plays, the Jags are the most dangerous team in the division. The defense is learning to close out games and create takeways in key situations.
Odds to Win AFC South (as of 7/16/23):
Jacksonville Jaguars -170
Tennessee Titans +325
Indianapolis Colts +600
Houston Texans +950
Next on the oddsboard are the Tennessee Titans. As I’m writing this, DeAndre Hopkins is in the process of signing a deal with the team, so the odds and team total may change on the Titans overnight. It’s a big signing for a Tennessee team with an aging quarterback in Ryan Tannehill and running back in Derrick Henry. Injuries have killed this team in the last two years including in 2022 when they started 7-3 before the downfall. A woeful offensive line was improved in free agency and the draft.
— Sam Phalen (@Sam_Phalen) July 16, 2023
The Colts are interesting because they think they have the talent. However, everything starts under center and the Colts will have their seventh different starter in as many seasons. Gone is Matt Ryan and in steps first round draft pick Anthony Richardson. Shane Steichen takes over as head coach and inherits a team with some holes to fill. Indianapolis might have to wait another year or two to make a run back to the postseason.
Season Win Totals (as of 7/16/23):
Jacksonville Jaguars 9.5 o145
Tennessee Titans 7.5 u125
Indianapolis Colts 6.5 o135
Houston Texans 6.5 o135
And then you have the Houston Texans. The team got a ton of draft picks when they dealt away Deshaun Watson and it will take time for them to be competitive again. Alabama edge-rusher Will Anderson, Jr and quarterback C.J. Stroud should be stars in a few years. It’s a very young team with a first-year head coach in DeMeco Ryans. This team should easily finish last once again.
Jay’s Season Win Total Best Bet: I’m going all-in on the Jaguars in this division. Lawrence has shown a ton of improvement in a very short time and I love Pederson as a head coach. The schedule starts at Indianapolis and then the Jags play five ‘home games’ in a row. Two of those are in their home away from home, London. The non-division games are tough but not impossible.
Jaguars OVER 9.5 (-145)
Jay’s Pick to Win Division: I don’t see the other three teams coming close to winning this division. The Jags were terrific in the second half of last season and I don’t think it was a fluke. This is now a very good team that is capable of going deep into the playoffs.
To see more odds and props for the AFC South, click here.