In our Fourth of July edition of the AFC South news round-up, we’re taking a look at some of the biggest stories from the past week pertaining to the Tennessee Titans’ division rivals, the Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars and Houston Texans.
In Houston, the Texans are now officially wrapped up in the Deshaun Watson legal situation. One of Watson’s accusers has filed a lawsuit against the team related to the alleged sexual misconduct of the Cleveland Browns quarterback.
For the Colts, we have a few articles that give some insight into what Indy may need to improve ahead of 2022, and one of their biggest needs mirrors Tennessee’s.
In Jacksonville, the honeymoon with head coach Doug Pederson continues, as players rave about what he has brought to Jacksonville thus far.
Read those stories and more in our latest trip around the AFC South to check in on the Titans’ division rivals.
10 best Colts 2022 offseason acquisitions
Syndication: The Indianapolis Star
Colts Wire’s Kevin Hickey listed Indianapolis’ 10 best moves of the offseason. Among them were the trades for quarterback Matt Ryan and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue, and the signing of cornerback Stephon Gilmore.
13 free agents the Colts could sign before training camp
AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith
Kevin Hickey of Colts Wire lists 13 free agents Indy should consider before training camp. The list is made up of wide receivers — including former Titans wideout Julio Jones — cornerbacks, safeties and defensive ends.
Ranking the Colts’ position groups by strength entering training camp
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Running back lands in the top spot on this list thanks to Jonathan Taylor. Hickey believes the safety position is the weakest thanks to the unexpected retirement of Khari Willis, who will be replaced by rookie Nick Cross.
Colts’ Jonathan Taylor nominated for 2 ESPY awards
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Taylor has notched himself a pair of ESPY nominations in 2022, including for “Best NFL Player” and “Best Breakthrough Athlete.” Taylor enjoyed a breakout year in 2021, leading the NFL in rushing.
Deshaun Watson accuser names Houston Texans in new lawsuit
Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
The attorney for one of Deshaun Watson’s accusers has filed a lawsuit naming the Texans as a defendant. The claim is that the team enabled Watson’s behavior that led to 24 civil lawsuits alleging sexual misconduct. Watson has since agreed to undisclosed settlements with 20 of the 24 women.
“Suffice to say, the overwhelming evidence collected indicating that the Houston Texans enabled Watson’s behavior is incredibly damning,” attorney Tony Buzbee said. “We believe the Texans knew or most certainly should have known of Watson’s conduct. Beyond that, we believe the filing speaks for itself.”
4 objectives DE Jonathan Greenard must prove to Texans in 2022
AP Photo/Darryl Webb
Texans Wire’s Mark Lane lists four things defensive end Jonathan Greenard must do in 2022 if he wants to land a long-term deal with Houston down the road. Greenard had a breakout year in 2021 with eight sacks.
Johnathan Joseph laments not winning Super Bowl with Texans
Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports
Former Texans and Titans cornerback Johnathan Joseph says he’s “pissed” that Houston didn’t win a Super Bowl with all the big names the team had during his time there (2011-19). The Texans won six division titles during Joseph’s tenure, including four seasons with double-digit wins.
Will Jack Easterby leave the Texans after the 2022 season?
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Former Houston Chronicle reporter and Texans beat writer John McClain believes this will be the last season for executive vice president of football operations Jack Easterby, whose influence on the organization has waned since the team hired general manager Nick Caserio in 2020.
David Culley held out hope Deshaun Watson would play for the Texans in 2021
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Former Texans head coach David Culley actually held out hope that Watson would still play for Houston in 2021 because of how well he fit in at practice and in meetings during his saga with the team.
Trevor Lawrence believes Jags are ‘building towards something special’ after coaching change
Bob Self/Florida Times-Union
From all accounts, new Jags head coach Doug Pederson is doing a good job changing the culture in Jacksonville, and quarterback Trevor Lawrence believes the Jaguars are “building something special.”
Jaguars OT Jawaan Taylor excited to see where Doug Pederson takes team
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Jawann Taylor is also high on his new head coach. He calls Pederson “a great guy overall” and says the players “love him to death already.” There’s still a long way to go in this, but talk about a major 180 from Urban Meyer.
4 Jaguars who have momentum heading into training camp
AP Photo/John Raoux
Jags Wire’s James Johnson lists four players who have the most momentum heading into training camp. Lawrence and running back Travis Etienne are among them.
Watch: Travis Etienne shows off footwork in workout video
AP Photo/John Raoux
Etienne is looking healthy ahead of 2022 after his rookie campaign was cut short due to a Lisfranc injury. And, with the uncertain status of fellow back James Robinson (Achilles), Etienne is in line to handle lead back duties, at least early on.
Recent Titans headlines
Syndication: The Tennessean