The All-AFC South team was released on Tuesday and now it’s time to give out some superlatives within the division for the 2014 season. The awards were determined by a panel of the NFL Nation writers from the division: Michael DiRocco (Jacksonville), Tania Ganguli (Houston), Paul Kuharsky (Tennessee) and Mike Wells (Indianapolis)
Offensive Player of the Year: QB Andrew Luck, Indianapolis
Luck led the NFL with 40 touchdown passes and was third in passing yards (4,761). He had 11 games (including playoffs) in which he threw for at least 300 yards. He led the Colts to an upset of Denver in the divisional round and into the AFC Championship Game.
Defensive Player of the Year: J.J. Watt, Houston
Gee, let’s see: 78 tackles, 20.5 sacks, 10 pass breakups, four forced fumbles, one safety, one interception (which he returned for a TD) and for good measure, three catches for 4 yards and three touchdowns. Watt has just as good of a case for league MVP honors as any other player.
Rookie of the Year: Avery Williamson, Tennessee
The fifth-round draft pick cracked the starting lineup in Week 5 and never left. He finished with 51 tackles (third on the team), four pass breakups, 3.0 sacks and was one of the Titans’ top defensive players.
Coach of the Year: Bill O’Brien, Houston
The Texans had a shaky quarterback situation and the No. 1 overall pick in the draft (Jadeveon Clowney) played in just four games, but O’Brien led the Texans to a 9-7 mark and kept them in the playoff hunt until the final week of the season. Remember, this team was 2-14 in 2013.