AFC South Week 8 Power Rankings: Jacksonville Jaguars in control of the division

• The Jaguars are 5-2 after beating the Saints on TNF

• The rest of the AFC South is lagging

• Here's a ranking of the division ahead of Week 8

Jacksonville Jaguars v New Orleans Saints
Jacksonville Jaguars v New Orleans Saints / Perry Knotts/GettyImages
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No. 1 team in the AFC South heading into Week 8: Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jacksonville Jaguars entered the 2023 season with high expectations, and it's fair to say that they've lived up to them. Last year, they managed to win six of their last seven games and qualify for the postseason after a 3-7 start. For this reason, Jacksonville was projected to win at least 10 games this season. They have already gotten half that amount and have ample time to get the rest. Based on their recent performances, they should reach the goal.

Trevor Lawrence isn't putting Madden-like numbers but he's making good decisions with the football and has put the Jags in a position to win more often than not. The running game is clicking. Although Travis Etienne is averaging 1.1 yards fewer per carry than last year, he's still an important piece of their offensive puzzled.

The defense, on the other hand, keeps getting better by the week. They have a league-high 17 turnovers already and they excel at stopping the run. Even though they rank 16th in points scored and 26th in yards allowed, they generally do a good job of keeping opposing defenses away from the end zone until they are close to winning.

Simply, the Jags don't have too many weaknesses and they should be getting reinforcements in the upcoming weeks if not days. Sophomore cornerback Gregory Junior has been designated to return from Injured Reserve while offensive lineman Walker Little (MCL) and wide receiver Zay Jones (knee) should resume practicing.

Similarly, defensive lineman DaVon Hamilton will soon join the defense. He was a full participant in practice last week and could make his regular-season debut when the Jaguars play the Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday.

A win over the Steelers will ensure the Jacksonville Jaguars are discussed as one of the top teams in the NFL.

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