The Tennessee Titans had a great run last year to come back after losing their first six games. Vince Young started his first game of the season in Week eight and let the team to an improbable 8-8 record despite the slow start.
They are looking to make the AFC South a little more interesting this season, but Young got himself in trouble in the offseason. We will have to wait and see what the NFL decides, and whether or not he will suspended for any amount of time.
The Colts are the perennial powerhouse, and look to continue their dominance of the division. The Texans had a strong season behind great play by Matt Schaub. They look to build on that success and challenge the Colts for the title.
Here is a look at the odds to win the AFC South in 2010:
All Odds Taken From Bodog and Bookmaker, be sure to shop around for the best price.
Indianapolis Colts (-160)
The Colts’ offense once again will be one of the best in the league. Peyton Manning had the best completion percentage of his career with 68.8%. He threw for over 300 yards in nine games last season, also a career high. It seems like Manning is getting better with age, not worse.
Reggie Wayne is a great No. 1 receiver. Pierre Garcon and Anthony Gonzalez pose legitimate threats on the other side of the field, and Austin Collie was a dangerous target last season as well. Add to that Pro Bowl tight end Dallas Clark, and you know why the Colts threw 601 passes in 2009.
The offensive line is strong and will protect Manning as usual. It will also help Joseph Addai get the rushing yards and touchdowns to supplement the high-flying passing attack.
The Colts upgraded a strong pass rush with DE Jerry Hughes, their first round pick in the draft. While Hughes might not start right away, he could be one of the top pass rushers in the league at some point. Robert Mathis and Dwight Freeney will again strike fear into opposing quarterbacks and help their secondary succeed.
The secondary is rock solid behind free safety Antoine Bethea and strong safety Bob Sanders. The latter has had injury trouble for years. He missed 37 games in the last four seasons, and it will be interesting to see how many games he plays in 2010.
The Colts could struggle against the run, but they make up for it with their great pass rush and secondary. It is hard to see anybody but the Colts win the division. If Manning stays healthy, that is.
Houston Texans (+350)
Matt Schaub had a breakout season last year. That was due to the fact that he finally managed to stay healthy. He played more than 11 games for the first time in his career and ended up with 4,770 yards and 29 touchdowns. He did throw 15 interceptions, but helped his team to have one of the best pass offenses in the country.
The Texans were 10th in the NFL in points per game (24.2) and first in passing yardage. Wide receiver Andre Johnson has established himself as one of the best wideouts in the league. He caught 216 balls for 3,144 yards and 17 touchdowns over the last two seasons.
Tight End Owen Daniels was a dangerous target at the beginning of 2009, but tore his ACL in the middle of the season. He had five touchdowns on 39 catches and 497 yards before he got hurt in Week 8.
Steve Slaton had a bad season in 2009 after shocking the league in 2008 when he had 1,282 yards and nine touchdowns. He missed the final five games of last season with a nerve problem in his neck. But even before that he had only 437 yards and three touchdowns with a measly 3.3 yards per carry.
The Texans addressed the issue and picked Auburn’s Ben Tate at 58. He should fit into the system perfectly and could have an impact right away.
Houston will most likely start first round draft pick Kareem Jackson at corner, and they will need a lot of pressure on the opposing quarterbacks to help the rookie. They are banking on DE Mario Williams, who had nine sacks last year, to create that pressure and are hoping that Connor Barwin will develop into a second option at end.
Tennessee Titans (+350)
Much will depend on whether Vince Young can repeat his late season success in 2010. And the offseason isn’t looking too great. While he hasn’t had any problems on the field, Young has made the headlines in a way the team and the league won’t be too happy about.
He was part of an altercation at a Dallas strip club and is under investigation by the league. A suspension isn’t likely, but the bad press could cause problems for the unstable quarterback again.
Running back Chris Johnson hasn’t participated in any offseason workouts and is threatening to hold out from the Titans’ training camp, because he is unhappy with his contract. Johnson had 2,006 yards and 14 touchdowns last season, and the Titans need his production to be successful.
Tennessee finally found a player to replace Albert Haynesworth on defense. They drafted Derrick Morgan at 16, and the defensive end out of Georgia Tech should be ready to step in and make and impact right away. Morgan, however, produced some bad press on his own. He was caught driving with a suspended license and suffered multiple injuries during OTAs and minicamp.
The Titans look good enough to win nine or ten teams, but their success will depend on whether the players can get their act together and stay out of trouble.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+1000)
Maurice Jones-Drew will again be the centerpiece of the Jaguars’ offense. He had 1,391 yards and 15 touchdowns last season and silenced all the critics that said he couldn’t shoulder a full load in the NFL. MJD also was second on the team in catches, hauling in 53 passes for 374 yards and one touchdown.
The Jaguars biggest problem offensively will be their quarterback. David Garrard seems far removed from his 2007 season in which he threw for 18 touchdowns and only three interceptions. He is too inconsistent and takes too many chances. He did have 15 touchdown passes in 2009, but also threw 10 picks.
Jacksonville tried to address their problem of creating a dominant pass rush on defense by signing free agent defensive end Aaron Kampman. The former Green Bay Packer used to be one of the stronger pass rushers in the league, but he struggled in the 3-4 last season. He also tore his ACL in November, and it is unclear if he will be ready to contribute at 100% in 2010.
The Jaguars have gaping holes in their secondary, and they will depend on the passrush to stop opposing pass attacks. If Kampman isn’t ready to go at full speed, the Jaguars will be in trouble. They don’t have the talent to challenge the other three teams in the division, and don’t have a real shot at the title.
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