Jacksonville Jaguars in favorable position to exceed 2023 NFL Season projected wins
The Jacksonville Jaguars are coming off a highly productive season and they've managed to keep most of their core from last year intact, so it's not surprising to see them earning favorable win totals for 2023.
DraftKings recently posted the over/under regular-season win total for all 32 teams and the Jags sit at 10.5, via Rod Goldberg of Bleacher Report. Only the Kansas City Chiefs, the San Francisco 49ers, and the Cincinnati Bengals have better odds at 11.5. Keep in mind that the projections could go up or down if a key player suffers an injury that sidelines him for an extensive period of time, or if a massive trade takes place, or not (Lamar Jackson, Aaron Rodgers).
Goldberg notes that Jacksonville needs just "two more wins than last season to hit the over" but says that many things would have to go right for them to reach the mark.
After going 3-14 in 2021, the Jacksonville ended the 2022 regular season with a 9-8 record, won the AFC South championship, and advanced to the Divisional Round of the Playoffs. While it's true that teams often undergo significant turnover, the Jags have managed to keep all their playmakers around, including but not limited to tight end Evan Engram, who got the franchise tag.
The Jacksonville Jaguars should return to the playoffs in 2023
The Jaguars' two biggest losses were right tackle Jawaan Taylor and defensive end Arden Key. The former joined the Kansas City Chiefs while the latter signed with the Tennessee Titans. Although both players had important roles in Jacksonville last season, the team's brass should have no trouble replacing them.
Walker Little can step in at right tackle to fill the void left by Taylor and the Jags can find Key's replacement in the draft. Moreover, the Jags traded for Calvin Ridley last year and he should round out an already exciting wide receiver corps that includes Christian Kirk and Zay Jones.
Make no mistake, the Jaguars still need to address a few needs but have enough talent to win the AFC South and return to the playoffs for the second year in a row. After all, the Houston Texans and the Indianapolis Colts are going through rebuilds and will have a hard time catching Jacksonville up. Similarly, the Tennessee Titans are reshuffling their roster and might require a year or two to become relevant again.
Having said that, the Jaguars can't rest on their laurels. Even if they earn a winning record in the AFC South, they will face other non-division teams that have a shot at making the playoffs and will be tough to beat. Among them are the Cincinnati Bengals, the Kansas City Chiefs, and the Buffalo Bills, clubs that have recently appeared in the Conference Championship.
The Jacksonville Jaguars will need to clear several hurdles if they want to hit their expected win totals in 2023. However, they have enough firepower to keep up with their AFC South foes, and nailing the draft will solidify their chances of getting over the hump next season.