1. Jacksonville Jaguars
With most of the league trending towards lighting up the scoreboard, they went the opposite direction and almost made it to the Super Bowl.
2. Tennessee Titans
A surprising Wild Card victory last year for some reason led to a coaching change, but most of what was built remains intact.
3. Houston Texans
If QB Deshaun Watson remains healthy for a full season, there’s no telling what the Texans are capable of accomplishing.
4. Indianapolis Colts
QB Andrew Luck is back and the Colts finally have a good offensive line in front of him.
Head Coach: Doug Marrone
Key Position: Quarterback
All eyes were on Blake Bortles and when the Jaguars were going to give up on him. That time never came and they gave him an extension. Expectations are for this team to at least get back to the conference title game again. Anything short will be a massive disappointment.
Key Acquisitions: CB D.J. Hayden (Detroit Lions), WR Donte Moncrief (Indianapolis Colts), OL Andrew Norwell (Carolina Panthers), TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (New York Jets)
Key Rookies: DL Taven Bryan, WR D.J. Chark, DB Ronnie Harrison
Head Coach: Mike Vrabel (Houston Texans)
Key Position: Running Back
The focus will be on making sure QB Marcus Mariota gets back to his old self, but he needs the pressure to be taken off of his shoulders as well. Utilizing Derrick Henry and with the addition of Dion Lewis should give the Titans a nice duo in the backfield for defenses to pay attention to.
Key Acquisitions: CB Malcolm Butler (New England Patriots), RB Dion Lewis (New England Patriots), DT Bennie Logan (Kansas City Chiefs), S Kenny Vaccaro (New Orleans Saints)
Key Rookies: LB Rashaan Evans, LB Harold Landry
Head Coach: Bill O’Brien
Key Position: Offensive Line
If there’s a repeat of last year, I would be shocked if Deshaun Watson remains healthy. They cannot allow 54 quarterback sacks again this year. That spells doom not just for Watson, but the entire offense. They added some pieces to fill the holes, but they need to be on the same page all year.
Key Acquisitions: CB Aaron Colvin (Jacksonville Jaguars), G Zach Fulton (Kansas City Chiefs), T Seantrel Henderson (Buffalo Bills), G Senio Kelemete (New Orleans Saints), DB Tyrann Mathieu (Arizona Cardinals)
Key Rookies: S Justin Reid, OL Martinas Rankin
Head Coach: Frank Reich (Philadelphia Eagles)
Key Position: Offensive Line
Andrew Luck is a very good quarterback. It remains to be seen if he is among the elite quarterbacks in the game today, but we won’t be able to judge that if he isn’t given enough time in the pocket to perform. He didn’t play a single snap last year, but it’s a good thing he didn’t with the Colts allowing 56 sacks. Drafting Quenton Nelson and Braden Smith is a good step in the right direction.
Key Acquisitions: DL Denico Autry (Oakland Raiders), TE Eric Ebron (Detroit Lions), LB Najee Goode (Philadelphia Eagles), WR Ryan Grant (Washington Redskins), OL Matt Slauson (Los Angeles Chargers)
Key Rookies: OL Quenton Nelson, LB Darius Leonard, OL Braden Smith, LB Kemoko Turay, DE Tyquan Lewis