The Colts and Titans battle, but the Texans stay on top of the AFC South

Lisa Johnson
AFC South AFC East Reporter

By Lisa Johnson // @lj1303 

With the playoff race in the AFC heating up, the Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans try and keep pace with the Houston Texans.

The Colts and Titans squared off against each other in Indianapolis on Sunday and the loser could find themselves two games back in the AFC South.

The last-place Jacksonville Jaguars hosted the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

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Week 12 could answer the question: Who wants to win the AFC South?

Kate Arhar
Senior Sports Editor AFC North and NFC South

By Kate Arhar // @ClvlndK8 

The AFC South division is one that has been hotly contested so far this season.

With the teams all hovering around the .500 mark, this week has them going head-to-head to see who can take over the top spot.

The Houston Texans took on the Indianapolis Colts on Thursday Night Football, while the Tennessee Titans will face the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday at 4:05 pm EST.

While the outcome of these games won’t reveal the ultimate winner of the division, it could be the beginning of someone breaking away from the pack.

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A huge win, a couple of losses headline Week 6 for the AFC South

Lisa Johnson
AFC South & East Reporter

By Lisa Johnson // @LJ1303

A huge win and a couple of lopsided losses highlight week 6 for the AFC South.

The Indianapolis Colts had a Week 6 bye, but the other three teams fought hard, with varying results.

Houston Texas
Deshaun Watson certainly didn’t need to explain to reporters about coverages following Houston’s Sunday come back win against the Kanas City Chiefs. Watson threw for 280 yards with one touchdown pass and scrambled for two more.

Running back Carlos Hyde padded his stats as well. Running for 116 yards with a touchdown of his own. Hyde was traded by the Chiefs to the Texans before the start of the regular season and you could tell this was a bit of a revenge game for him.

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Wrapping up the draft for the AFC and NFC South

Sonja Greenfield, Senior NFL Reporter

By Sonja Greenfield //@Mom23RN

This week I’ll be looking at the AFC and NFC South and how they did with their drafts.  I’ll ask 3 questions about each team.  Did they address their biggest need? Who will have the biggest impact? What could 2019 look like?

Let’s start with the Indianapolis Colts. After having a pretty strong offensive line, quarterback Andrew Luck, and Pro Bowl tight end Eric Ebron, the Colts focused on defense.  7 of their 10 picks were defensive.

Who could have the biggest impact? Former Michigan State safety Khari Willis.  He worked hard and was an impact player.  I think he’ll fit in nicely.  2019 for the Colts?  If their defense lives up to its potential, it could be tough sledding for the rest of the AFC South.

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Nick Foles decides its time to move on from the Eagles. Where does he go?

Dayna O’Gorman
NFL Reporter

By Dayna O’Gorman // @DaynaOG

Always a bridesmaid, never the bride.

Even after being named MVP of a Super Bowl LII, even after saving the Eagles 2018 season and taking them to the playoffs, Philadelphia continued to tell quarterback Nick Foles he just wasn’t good enough. QB Carson Wentz, who has been injured the last two seasons, will be their starter. Foles decided that it was time to move on, and he paid $2 million to do it.

The Eagles had picked up Foles $20 million option, but that would mean he would continue to carry a clipboard for Wentz. Foles paid the fee to be released from that option, but Philadelphia still has the ability to franchise tag him. This would give the team the ability to trade him. It has been reported that multiple teams are interested in bringing Foles on board. This isn’t surprising considering the state of the quarterback situation in the NFL.

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For the Colts, tough defense leads to a tough loss

Julie Voigt, Indianapolis Colts Reporter

By Julie Voigt //@JulieNoted_NFL

Jacksonville Jaguars 6 – Indianapolis Colts 0

 

After Sunday’s AFC South Divisional loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, the jury is out on if the Indianapolis Colts can actually make a wild card playoff appearance. Although there are still 4 games left in the regular season, chances now appear to be diminishing.  

On Sunday’s matchup, it appeared to be the Battle the Defenses as the Colts only allowed the Jaguars 211 total yards. (132 passing and 79 rushing).

Defensive end Denico Autry led with seven solo tackles, three sacks, two forced fumbles, and four quarterback hits.  Autry has become one of the first Colts’ to pick up three sacks since defensive end Robert Mathis in 2013. Although Indianapolis did not get their needed divisional victory, the defensive line kept Jaguars backup quarterback Cody Kessler and company from the end zone and forcing two field goals. 

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Indianapolis’s offensive line leads the way for the Colts

Julie Voigt, Indianapolis Colts Reporter

By Julie Voigt  //@JulieNoted_NFL

Indianapolis Colts 29 – Jacksonville Jaguars 26

About this time last year, Indianapolis had a problem when playing Jacksonville.  In fact, Jacksonville earned the name “Sacksonville” while recording 10 sacks on second stringer QB Jacoby Brissett. 

Brissett was filling in for a very injured QB Andrew Luck of the Colts and not allowing one win. And with that, the Jaguars proceeded to win the AFC South and started off this season as a favorite to take over and potentially become a contender.  But the AFC South has been very unpredictable this season.

This past Sunday in Indianapolis, the Colts matched up with the Jaguars in a must-win divisional game.  The Colts pulled off a victory over the Jaguars 29-26 and extended their win streak to three.  Jacksonville, on the other hand, has a six-game losing streak going.

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Jacksonville Jaguars, early observations

Julie Dixon
OTFB Jaguars Reporter

 

By Julie Dixon// @ABroncoNole

After seeing the Jacksonville Jaguars during practices, a scrimmage, and a pre-season game, there are a few observations that can be made.

I have no idea how they’ll do, but they won’t be beaten due to being out of shape. Head coach Doug Marrone is a taskmaster and until you’ve been under a Jacksonville sun at noon, you can’t imagine the heat these guys practice in. To his credit, Marrone and all the coaches wear black shirts.

 

Quarterbacks

Blake Bortles is, and most likely, will always be an inconsistent quarterback. Andy Dalton comes to mind. However, his lows were better than Dalton’s and he’s had more highs. It’s clear that he feels relaxed and loose. When he makes mistakes they appear more testing boundaries over making dumb mistakes. FYI, the guy is an athlete. After going two and half hours in the heat of the day, the team does wind sprints and he’s the first one every time. This guy will be a threat with RPO’s.

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Jags continue to signal they’re going Super Bowl or bust mode.

OTFB Jaguars Reporter

By Julie Dixon// @ABroncoNole

The Jacksonville Jaguars continue to make moves.  Their signings and releases freed up cap space and improved the roster in a few places.

Wide receiver Donte Moncrief was an uptick for them over WR Allen Robinson because his contract is less and is a “Prove It” one.  He signed a one-year, $9.6 million, fully-guaranteed contract that also contains another $2 million in incentives.

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Jacksonville Jaguars Extend Blake Bortles

OTFB Jaguars Reporter

By Julie Dixon //@ABroncoNole

 

In a move that shouldn’t have shocked anyone, the Jaguars offered quarterback Blake Bortles a three-year, $54 million deal, 26.5 guaranteed. Additional incentives are included making it worth up to $66.5M. More details will be released soon.

Bortles was the Jaguars 1st pick of the 2014 draft.  He went third overall, behind Houston Texans defensive end Jadevion Clowney and Detroit Lions tackle Greg Robinson.

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