Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
The AFC South is seen by many NFL analyst as one of the weaker divisions in football. That can be a positive because it will take less improvement by the Jags to turn things around. The negative is a total lack of respect. Aside from the Colts, there is not much to be excited about right now in the AFC South, except for the impending NFL draft in which three of their teams will be picking in the top 11, and two in the top three. What I will be doing is ranking the AFC South at multiple positions. For now I will be going with the players who would be the presumed starters while attempting to take into consideration free agency and draft picks. We have ranked QB, RB, & WR. Now we focus on TE.
- Houston Texans (Owen Daniels & Garrett Graham)/ 73 catches, 128 targets, 797 yards, 8 TDs, 10.9 YPC – Of course a lot of this is based on Daniels’ ability to stay healthy, which has been an iffy prospect for a couple of years now. When healthy, Daniels is an explosive weapon that will usually catch anything in his immediate area and is a master at finding the soft underbelly between the linebackers and defensive backs. Graham was given the chance to start in Daniels’ absence and put up credible numbers. These two together, along with better QB play, could do some real damage.
- Indianapolis Colts (Coby Fleener & Dwayne Allen)/ 53 catches, 90 targets, 628 yards, 5 TDs, 11.9 YPC – Another tandem that dealt with injuries. Allen suffered a season-ending hip injury in the second half of the first game of the season. If he comes back in 2014 and just matches his 2012 numbers (45 catches for 521 yds and 3 TDs) then he and Fleener could compete for best TEs but for now, the Colts have the 2nd best TEs in the AFC South.
- Tennessee Titans (Delanie Walker & Craig Stevens)/ 62 catches, 92 targets, 576 yards, 6 TDs, 9.3 YPC – These numbers are deceiving because Stevens only had two catches. The Titan’s TE show had only one star, Delanie Walker. It wouldn’t be ridiculous to affirm that Walker was easily the best TE in the division. His YPC was miserable but everything else was stellar, especially considering he had no one else to take pressure off him. Because of the Stevens no show, the Tennessee Titans have the 3rd best TEs in the AFC South.
- Jacksonville Jaguars (Marcedes Lewis & Clay Harbor)/ 49 catches, 82 targets, 651 yards, 6 TDs, 13.3 YPC – When you take into account that Lewis only played in 10 regular season games and that Harbor was a roster cut from Philadelphia claimed on waivers shortly prior to the season’s start, then these guys put up some respectable stats. They had the lowest catch count, but they had more yards than the Titans. They had more TDs than the Colts. They had more TDs per catch than the Texans. They had the highest YPC by a good measure. All this with missed games, a player learning a new playbook, and pretty inconsistent QB play. Rumor has it that Lewis will be asked back in 2014 (he was expected to be a salary cap casualty). With improved QB performance, this TE group could shoot to the top in 2014. For now though, the Jags have the worse TE’s in the AFC South.
Next up…Offense line. Catch cha later!
List compiled by Michael McDonald.
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