The Jacksonville Jaguars made some enormous improvements this offseason, but the analysts at ESPN aren’t completely ready to buy in, still ranking them well below average in their post-draft power rankings.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are a better team than they were in 2015 thanks to a handful of key acquisitions made during the offseason. The defense can only get better and the offense appears to be on the precipice of greatness.
Still, the Jaguars were a 5 win team last year and they need to show something on the field before anyone fully believes in them.
ESPN moved the Jaguars up 6 spots in their post draft power rankings, but that still landed them at a fairly low slot at 23.
"23. Jacksonville Jaguars2015 record: 5-11Post-free agency ranking: No. 29The defense adds Jalen Ramsey, Myles Jack, Dante Fowler Jr., Tashaun Gipson and Prince Amukamara. The offense was top 10 in passing yards last year. They haven’t won more than five games in a season this decade (yes, seriously), but there appears to be reason to hope."
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ESPN is usually reluctant to give the Jaguars some slack, but this is probably the year they become a “media darling.” I wouldn’t be shocked to see national analysts starting to champion the Jaguars as this year’s “sleeper” team, a role the Minnesota Vikings held last year and eventually lived up to by winning the NFC North.
Unsurprisingly, ESPN has the Colts currently as the best team in the AFC South (ranked 12th overall in the power rankings), mostly on the strength of getting Andrew Luck back. It’ll be interesting to see how Luck plays in his return, as he was one of the more disappointing performers when he was healthy in the first few weeks of 2015.
The Houston Texans aren’t too far behind at the number 17 spot, but their entire season hinges on how well Brock Osweiler plays. I’m guessing he isn’t going to light the world on fire, but we’ll see.
The Jaguars will almost certainly climb these rankings as the regular season unfolds.