Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

NFL 2024: AFC South Analysis, Odds, and Best Bets

The AFC South could house the teams with the best and worst records in the NFL. Expectations are sky high for the Houston Texans and C.J. Stroud following his explosive rookie campaign. The Tennessee Titans are setting up camp at the other end of the division with the whispers growing louder that Will Levis and the Titans may simply be as bad a football team as there is in the NFL this season. Somewhere in between these two potential extremes sit the Indianapolis Colts and the Jacksonville Jaguars.

DeMeco Ryans took Houston from worst to first in his first season with the Texans. His quarterback returns with truckloads of accolades from his rookie season but also momentum as the praise for Stroud was deserved. Houston has added Stefon Diggs to a receiving corps that already featured Tank Dell, Nico Collins, and Dalton Schultz. Joining Stroud and Dameon Pierce in the backfield in Houston will be Joe Mixon. Nick Caserio has overhauled the defense signing 14 free agents headlined by Danielle Hunter recognizing that a team-record 46 sacks in 2023 was not enough.

Join Vaughn Dalzell and Brad Thomas every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for Lunch Money as they find bets and have some fun at…lunchtime. Follow @NBCSportsBet and join the fellas as they turn lunch money into dinner money.

Fans may want to pump the brakes though considering Houston’s schedule. Having won the division in 2023, they play a first-place schedule in 2024. That translates into games against five division winners, seven playoff teams, and 11 of 17 games against teams with winning records in 2023. Not one to put too much stock in an opponent’s previous season? Then try on this list of quarterbacks on the Houston schedule this season: Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen, Dak Prescott, Aaron Rodgers, Tua Tagovailoa, Jordan Love, Jared Goff, and Trevor Lawrence.

The Indianapolis Colts hope their second-year quarterback is healthy and can take a Stroud-like step this season. If so, Shane Steichen and co. may challenge Houston at the top of the division. The Colts otherwise enter the season looking not too different from last year’s team that squandered an opportunity to make the playoffs on the final drive of the season.

Read More: Rotoworld’s Fantasy Football Team Previews Hub

Chris Ballard and the Colts are banking on Richardson’s health and maturity to get them over the hump and into the postseason for the first time since 2020. Just in case the sophomore out of Florida finds himself injured again at some point this season, Indy has signed Joe Flacco as his back-up. For better or worse, all the Indy eggs are in the Richardson basket without question.

Fresh off signing a five-year, $275 million contract, Trevor Lawrence takes the field for Jacksonville needing to take a step if the Jaguars are to compete in the South and get back to the playoffs. To assist his star signal-caller and All Pro running back Travis Etienne Jr., the front office has bolstered the offensive line led by the addition of former Bills’ center Mitch Morse. Gabe Davis and Brian Thomas Jr. join Christian Kirk and Evan Engram in the receiver room. If the line gives Lawrence just that much more time than a season ago, the Jags’ offense should be able to move the ball and more importantly, score more touchdowns.

Bet the Edge is your source for the day in sports betting. Get all of Jay Croucher and Drew Dinsick’s insight Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6AM ET right here or wherever you get your podcasts.

New coordinator Ryan Nielsen brings an attacking style to the Jacksonville defense. Playing four at the line of scrimmage should allow the tandem of Josh Allen and Travon Walker to build on their 27.5 sacks of 2023. And oh by the way, Arik Armstead will now headline the interior of the defensive line having been signed as a free agent after a decade with the 49ers.

Lets dive into the numbers and find value on the betting board courtesy of NBC Sports’ analyst Brad Thomas (@MrBradThomas).

Houston Texans Primary Logo
Houston Texans
  • AFC South Odds: +105 | AFC Odds: +850 | Super Bowl Odds: +1600
  • Head Coach: DeMeco Ryans (2nd Season) | 2023 Record: 10-7 | Projected 2024 Win Total: 9.5
  • Best Bet: CJ Stroud MVP +850
  • Last season behind a beat-up offensive line, Stroud threw for 4,108 yards, 23 touchdowns with just five interceptions.
  • Plenty of pressure on Stroud to better those numbers but he has been handling similar pressure since his time as a Buckeye.
  • A healthy line and a receiver room including Stefon Diggs, Nico Collins, and Tank Dell and Stroud’s production should be as good as in 2023 when he earned the Offensive Rookie of the Year.
Indianapolis Colts Primary Logo
Indianapolis Colts
  • AFC South Odds: +310 | AFC Odds: +3500 | Super Bowl Odds: +6000
  • Head Coach: Shane Steichen (2nd Season) | 2023 Record: 9-8 | Projected 2024 Win Total: 8.5
  • Best Bet: Anthony Richardson – Comeback Player of the Year +600
  • This market has new guidelines. A player must come back from an injury or a life-changing event as opposed to simply putting up much better stats than in years’ past.
  • Before Richardson got hurt last season, he was on the verge of putting up video game-like numbers (7TDs in 4GP) and potentially winning OROY.
  • With the second-year quarterback healthy and the receiver corps getting another year of NFL experience with him under center, we can expect Richardson to light it up.
Jacksonville Jaguars Primary Logo
Jacksonville Jaguars
  • AFC South Odds: +275 | AFC Odds: +2200 | Super Bowl Odds: +4500
  • Head Coach: Doug Pederson (3rd Season) | 2023 Record: 9-8 | Projected 2024 Win Total: 8.5
  • Best Bet: Colts UNDER 8.5 wins (-110)
  • The Jags can absolutely be a nine-win team. However, I expect the three other teams in their division will take a step forward.
  • With that knowledge, nine wins seems a bit of a reach.
Tennessee Titans Primary Logo
Tennessee Titans
  • AFC South Odds: +1000 | AFC Odds: +7000 | Super Bowl Odds: +15000
  • Head Coach: Brian Callahan (1st Season) | 2023 Record: 6-11 | Projected 2024 Win Total: 6.5
  • Best Bet: Calvin Ridley under 825.5 receiving yards (-112)
  • The problem for Ridley is that he will line up alongside DeAndre Hopkins and Tyler Boyd.
  • Hopkins will likely take the bulk of the intermediate to deep targets
  • Boyd will be the x-factor in the slot.
  • Let’s not forget Tony Pollard who will be targeted at least twice a game.

Up Next: Betting the AFC North.

Stay tuned.


Betting the NFC South
Betting the NFC West
Betting the AFC West