AFC South Notes: Luck, Allen, Texans, Titans

Though there are items to nitpick in Andrew Luck‘s new contract with the Colts, the former No. 1 overall pick comes out ahead when it comes to cash flows, writes Jason Fitzgerald of the Sporting News. Starting in year three of the deal (2019), Luck will have lapped the field when it comes to quarterback contracts that are currently on the books — he’ll have earned more than $79MM while Russell Wilson, for example, will have taken home only $70.6MM by year three of his deal. Downsides of the pact, according to Fitzgerald, include the $32MM signing bonus, which doesn’t stack up in terms of percentage of total contract value, and historical relevancy, as Luck still falls short of Aaron Rodgers‘ deal once inflation is accounted for.

Here’s more out of the AFC South:

  • Both of the Colts‘ top two tight ends were eligible for unrestricted free agency during the offseason, but the club chose to re-sign Dwayne Allen instead of Coby Fleener in large part because of the former’s versatility, according to Kevin Bowen of Head coach Chuck Pagano has pointed out that Allen is a more well-rounded tight end that’s more adept in the blocking game, and given that new offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski heavily employs the tight end in his scheme, it made sense for Indianapolis to go with the more complete option.
  • Many members of the Colts‘ scouting staff had positive things to say about seventh-round linebacker Trevor Bates, as Bowen writes in a separate piece. PFR has been posting its own reviews of the AFC South draft classes, with evaluator Dave-Te Thomas providing his expert analysis on each selection. We’ve already taken a look at the Texans, Jaguars, and Titans, and the Colts piece will be coming soon.
  • Mike Mularkey‘s tenure with the Titans will be determined by quarterback Marcus Mariota‘s development, opines Mike DiRocco of Mularkey was somewhat surprisingly promoted to full-time head coach after taking over as the club’s interim leader midway through the 2015 season. After Mularkey posted poor records in his previous stops with the Bills and Jaguars, many observers thought new general manager Jon Robinson would want to bring in an outside hire at head coach. Instead, Tennessee opted for continuity, likely with an eye on Mariota’s future.
  • The Texans will face some growing pains on offense with new quarterback Brock Osweiler in tow, but Houston’s defense is so spectacular that the club is still in a solid position, writes Mike Wells of After giving Osweiler $37MM in guaranteed money, the Texans didn’t stop adding to their roster, adding weapons such as Lamar Miller, Will Fuller, and Braxton Miller to the offense, while solidifying the line by bringing in Jeff Allen and Nick Martin.
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