Today’s question: For several years, this division has been one of the league’s worst. Do you see that changing anytime soon?
Mike Wells, Indianapolis Colts: I'm going to say no because there are a lot of question marks about the teams in the division other than the Indianapolis Colts. How quickly can Marcus Mariota transition from being the No. 2 overall pick to actually being the Tennessee Titans’ franchise quarterback? Can he be like Andrew Luck and take the Titans to the playoffs as a rookie? Can Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles take advantage of the additions of tight end Julius Thomas and running back T.J. Yeldon and take another step in Year 2? And the Houston Texans: Everybody is still waiting for them to find a quarterback so all of J.J. Watt's talent doesn't go to waste. The Texans would give the Colts a run for their money for the division title if they ever find a quarterback. The NFC South was also a brutal division last season. Every team had a losing record in that division. But the difference between the NFC South and AFC South is that all four teams in the NFC South have quarterbacks better than the ones in Houston, Tennessee and Jacksonville.
Mike DiRocco, Jacksonville Jaguars: That depends on the quarterbacks. The reason the AFC South hasn’t been very good the past few seasons is the poor play of the division’s signal-callers. The Colts were the class of the division for years under Peyton Manning, and now Luck has them atop the standings. Houston has had only four winning seasons since its inception in 2002. Tennessee has had only one winning season since 2008. Jacksonville has won just nine games the past three seasons combined and hasn't had a winning season since 2007. Why? Garbage quarterback play: David Carr, Matt Schaub, Vince Young, Kerry Collins, Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne. The Jaguars believe they have found their franchise quarterback in Bortles, and Tennessee just drafted Mariota with the second overall pick. However, Houston is relying on Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett. If those quarterbacks develop into solid starters -- not even Pro Bowl players, just average NFL quarterbacks -- the division becomes tougher.
Paul Kuharsky, Tennessee Titans: I think it will be better overall. The Jaguars and Titans will improve some in the win column. But in terms of competition for the division crown and overall record, I think it will be hard for the division to get on better footing compared to the rest of the league. The AFC South has one proven quarterback and three question marks. Ultimately, that’s not going to serve as a balloon that will lift the division as a whole, no matter what kind of run games and defenses the Texans, Jaguars and Titans might field. That said, Houston could be a playoff team, and if the AFC South sends two teams to the playoffs, it will be due some praise.