• TGT on YouTube
  • About TGT
  • The TGT Team
  • How TGT rates
  • Responsible Gambling Advice
  • Contact Our Team
  • Writers Wanted
  • Content Disclaimer
  • Affiliate Disclosure
Contains commercial content
Billboard Left
Billboard Left
The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / AFC South most improved player by team from the 2020 NFL season

AFC South most improved player by team from the 2020 NFL season

Improved players in AFC South
Publish Date: 03/12/2021
Fact checked by: Mike Goodpaster

The AFC South wasn’t particularly strong this past season. All four franchises haven’t drafted well in previous years, leaving a shallow pool of candidates for these selections. In the end, already established stars raised their profiles more than young players made an impact, which contributed to the South not getting a team past the Wild Card Round.

Let’s set one essential rule before we start. Rookies weren’t included in the selection process because they only have one season under their belts. Even if a player like Jonathan Taylor made strides throughout 2020, including him in an article looking for year-to-year improvement at the NFL level doesn’t make sense.

This article is the third edition in an eight-part series. You can visit the previous articles below. Check back regularly for more content.

AFC North l AFC East

AFC South

Houston Texans- Deshaun Watson, QB

Watson made his third consecutive Pro Bowl this past season, so he’s already an established star. However, the Clemson product went from being a bottom top-ten quarterback to an MVP candidate in 2020. Even without DeAndre Hopkins, Watson set career highs by completing 70.2% of his throws for 33 touchdowns and a league-leading 4,823 yards.

Watson posted a 112.4 passer rating behind Houston’s battered offensive line. That only trailed Aaron Rodgers’ 121.5 rating among qualified quarterbacks. Drew Brees, Patrick Mahomes, and Rodgers were the only quarterbacks to start more than 12 games and throw fewer interceptions than Watson’s career-low seven. It’s also worth noting that the 25-year-old star ran for 444 yards and three touchdowns.

In an offseason where multiple former first-round quarterbacks found themselves without jobs or on the trade market for the wrong reasons, Watson is the apple in the eyes of all QB needy teams. He’s already arrived as an MVP-caliber player.

Indianapolis Colts- Braden Smith, OT

Cornerback Xavier Rhodes made the largest jump from his 2019 season to 2020. The former All-Pro got destroyed in his final year with the Vikings. However, Rhodes rebounded with a quality starting season for the Colts, but he’d reached higher levels in the past. Because 2020 was a bounce-back year rather than a real breakout season for Rhodes, he doesn’t qualify for this spot.

Smith is the often-overlooked right tackle along a dominant Colts offensive line. Since entering the NFL in 2018, he’s been one of the most consistent tackles. However, this past year was the high-water mark of Smith’s already stellar career. According to Pro Football Focus (PFF), the Auburn product didn’t allow a sack in his 14 appearances and only committed three penalties.

Jacksonville Jaguars- Dawuane Smoot, DE

Smoot hasn’t jumped off the page since entering the NFL in 2017, but there aren’t many candidates for this spot in Jacksonville. The team tanked this past season, and it showed in how their young and inexperienced players performed. At least Smoot played a career-high 665 defensive snaps, according to Pro Football Reference.

The former third-round pick started seven of his 16 appearances. He recorded 25 tackles, 5.5 sacks, two forced fumbles, 17 quarterback hits, and 31 pressures. All of those numbers were career highs. Smoot is a free agent this offseason.

Tennessee Titans- Corey Davis, WR

Davis entered the league to high expectations. Tennessee took the Western Michigan product at fifth overall in the 2017 NFL Draft, and he flopped almost immediately. Davis wasn’t effective as a rookie. He took strides in his second season before regressing in Ryan Tannehill’s 2019 breakout campaign. The Titans declined Davis’ fifth-year option, making him a free agent this offseason.

While Davis won’t reach the rich base salary in the fifth year of his rookie deal, he gets to sign a lucrative long-term deal in free agency. The 26-year-old balled out this past season, catching 70.65% of his targets for 984 yards and five touchdowns in 14 games. Davis’ 15.1 yards per reception and 10.7 yards per target were both career-highs that cemented him as a quality No. 2 option.

Read Also
Esteban de Jesus, Roberto Duran y AIDS (1972-89)
Many of us dream of celebrity sports fame, but only cruel individuals ...
Elmer Ray: The Humble Man of Hastings
"Men judge generally more by the eye than by the hand, for ...
SI Sportsbook Promo
Top 50 NBA players under 25 years old in 2021: Doncic bests Young
This year’s playoffs confirmed that the NBA is in good hands. The ...
Grading every NFL team’s picks from the 2021 NFL Draft
Quickly, click away if you’re going to get upset by reading draft ...
Sam Teets 2021 NFL three-round predictive mock draft 6.0
This is a predictive NFL mock draft and my final of the ...
Every NFL team’s best player not in the Pro Football Hall of Fame- NFC East
The Pro Football Hall of Fame houses the greatest players in NFL ...
Top 100 remaining 2021 NFL free agents after Day 1
This is the most up-to-date list of available NFL free agents following ...
Predicting the next five Pro Football Hall of Fame classes
Induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio is ...
Ranking the top 200 players in the NFL ahead of the 2021 season
This list isn’t based solely on performances from the 2020 NFL season. ...
Bonus of the month
SI Sportsbook - Get your Free Bet now! Get your Free Bet now!
Latest News
Top 10 Pound for Pound Boxers 12/05/22
The criteria for the Grueling Truth Pound for ...
NFL Week 13 MNF Saints vs Buccaneers: Odds, Tips and Predictions 12/05/22
📅 Date: Monday, December, 05 🕚 Game Time: ...
Top 10 Things we learned from week 13 of the NFL season
The Eagles dominated a good Tennessee Titans team ...
Our Latest YouTube Videos
Video: The Sports Zone: Top Sports News: Luke Fickell is gone, Bengals/Chiefs Preview and more
The Sports Zone: Top Sports News: Luke Fickell is gone, Bengals/Chiefs Preview and more
Video: The NFL Draft Show
The NFL Draft Show
Video: Froggy Talkin Sports W/Ryan & Joe
Froggy Talkin Sports W/Ryan & Joe
Betting Tips
Top Betting Sites
Top Betting Bonuses
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook Review
97/100 Review
BetMGM Review
DraftKings Review
FanDuel Review
SI Sportsbook
SI Sportsbook Bonus
T&Cs apply
First deposit only | 21+ & located in CO, MI, VA | Promo code EXTRA200| A qualifying bet is $20 or more | Min odds of +120 or more | Free Bet Tokens credited after bet is settled and expire after 7 days | Free Bet stakes not included in winnings | Please Gamble Responsibly - Gambling Problem? VA: CALL 1-888-532-3500, CO: CALL 1-800-522-4700, MI: CALL 1-800-270-7117 | Full T&C apply Bonus
100% up to $500
T&Cs apply
BetMGM Bonus
100% up to $1000
T&Cs apply
DraftKings Bonus
20% up to $1000
T&Cs apply
WynnBET Bonus
Bet $100 Get $100
T&Cs apply
Our Team
Mike GoodpasterAuthor IconJosh SchwartzSamuel TeetsMark Lewis
Mike Goodpaster
Mike Goodpaster
Chief Editor
Author Icon
Christopher Carlson
Content Writer
Josh Schwartz
Josh Schwartz
Samuel Teets
Samuel Teets
US Sports Veteran
Mark Lewis
Mark Lewis
Simon Briffa
Simon Briffa
Sports Editor
Chris Benedict
Chris Benedict
Author Icon
Malik Zorrok
John Raspanti
John Raspanti
Brian Coburn
Brian Coburn
Peter Bonahoom
Peter Bonahoom
Billboard Left
Billboard Left
Find out what the legends have to say about sports this week....

If you enjoy hearing from the legends of pro sports, then be sure to tune into “The Grueling Truth” sports shows, “Where the legends speak”

Contact us: [email protected]

Players must be 21 years of age or older or reach the minimum age for gambling in their respective state and located in jurisdictions where online gambling is legal. Please play responsibly. Bet with your head, not over it. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, and wants help, call or visit: (a) the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey at 1-800-Gambler or; or (b) Gamblers Anonymous at 855-2-CALL-GA or

Trading financial products carries a high risk to your capital, especially trading leverage products such as CFDs. CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

This site is using Cloudflare and adheres to the Google Safe Browsing Program. We adapted Google's Privacy Guidelines to keep your data safe at all times.

Move to Top
Our Sports Pros recommend these awesome Social Casino sites this week:
Your Bonus Code:
The bonus offer of was already opened in an additional window. If not, you can open it also by clicking the following link:
Visit Site