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Post-Week 3 NFL: Where Each AFC Division Stands

It has been a chaotic and unpredictable start to the 2022-23 NFL Season so far. There have been numerous upsets, and it’s hard to tell at this point how exactly the teams in the league should be ranked compared to each other. Here’s my summary of each division, as well as how I think it will play out. 

AFC North:

Browns (2-1), Ravens (2-1), Bengals (1-2), Steelers (1-2)

Lamar Jackson is playing like an elite, MVP level QB right now, and if it weren’t for the Miami Dolphins making a remarkable comeback, his Baltimore Ravens would be 3-0 and viewed as one of the best teams, if not the best team. Nick Chubb has performed phenomenally, and his Cleveland Browns are above .500. The Cincinnati Bengals took care of business against the Jets this past week, which lessens the panic of their fanbase. Finally, the Pittsburgh Steelers still have questions at QB and will suffer from the T.J. Watt injury, but with Mike Tomlin leading them could be a sneaky team to watch out for.                                    My Division Winner Prediction: Baltimore Ravens

AFC South:

Jaguars (2-1), Titans (1-2), Colts (1-1-1), Texans (0-2-1)

The Jacksonville Jaguars have certainly exceeded expectations to start the Doug Pederson era, most recently in their 38-10 demolition on the road against the highly touted Los Angeles Chargers. The Tennessee Titans won their 0-2 battle with the Las Vegas Raiders, giving them some hope especially considering Derrick Henry looked like himself again, but they still sit below .500. The Indianapolis Colts upset the Kansas City Chiefs behind Jelani Woods’ first two career touchdowns, and the Houston Texans are one of two winless teams in the league, although rookie Dameon Pierce provided some quality rushes in Week 3. My Division Winner Prediction: Jacksonville Jaguars

AFC East: 

Dolphins (3-0), Bills (2-1), Jets (1-2), Patriots (1-2)

The Miami Dolphins are one of just two unbeaten teams in the NFL, and behind Tua Tagovailoa’s leadership just upset the presumed best team in the league, the Buffalo Bills. While the weather and injuries certainly played a role in the result of the game, this nonetheless shows the Dolphins are a contender not only to make the postseason, but to potentially make a deep playoff run as well. The Bills should be fine going forward, but the division may be less of a runaway then we thought a week ago. The New York Jets haven’t looked great overall, but Joe Flacco has played much better than expected and their remarkable comeback in Week 2 got them in the win column. The New England Patriots aren’t likely to be as good as they were a year ago, especially considering the Mac Jones injury, but they held tough with the Ravens for most of the game, proving they have what it takes to at least be in the mix for a potential postseason berth. My Division Winner Prediction: Buffalo Bills

AFC West:

Chiefs (2-1), Broncos (2-1), Chargers (1-2), Raiders (0-3)

Coming into the season, the AFC West was the clear best division in football, but a bit of a shaky start leaves some doubt as to whether this is actually the case. The Kansas City Chiefs were dominant Weeks 1 and 2, but got upset by the Colts in Week 3. The Los Angeles Chargers got blown out at home against the Jaguars, although Justin Herbert’s lingering rib injury likely contributed to this. The Denver Broncos, despite being 2-1 on the season, have struggled mightily on offense, and first year Head Coach Nathaniel Hackett has held the team back considerably as well. The Las Vegas Raiders, even though they added Davante Adams and Chandler Jones to a team that made the playoffs a year ago, are the only 0-3 team in the league. Raider fans, don’t completely count your team out yet, since all of the games have been close, but if they don’t start winning soon it could be too late. My Division Winner Prediction: Kansas City Chiefs

Summary: This AFC has tons of talent, and with the number of upsets that have already occurred, anything can happen. Let’s sit back and enjoy the rest of the season, and see what new surprises are in store for us viewers and fans.