The 2017 NFL season is right around the corner, and the AFC South is shaping up to be one of the most intriguing divisions in the NFL. The league features a ton of offensive talent — who will stand out as the unofficial Offensive Player of the Year from the league when the season is finished?
AFC South QB Rankings: Andrew Luck, Marcus Mariota Lead The Field
While there is no award for this particular question, it's an interesting topic to debate. With a couple of strong quarterbacks, talented running backs and big-play receivers, there are plenty of options to choose from.
For my money, Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota is in the best position to take home the "award."
Mariota heads into his third season in the league after impressing as a starter early in his career. Take a look at Mariota's stats through his first two seasons in the league:
He's been remarkably efficient so far, completing over 60 percent of his passes while maintaining his high touchdown to interception ratio. Shoud he at the very least maintain his production so far, he'll be in line for another strong year.
But the reason Mariota could be the best offensive player in the division this fall has just as much to do with what's around him.
First, the Titans have one of the best offensive lines in football. Pro Football Focus recently ranked the unit No. 4 in the league, noting: "First-round tackles Taylor Lewan and Jack Conklin have lived up to the hype and then some, while former undrafted guard Quinton Spain has turned into a gem of a find."
Then you add in the skilled players.
The running game is strong with the two-headed attack of DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry keeping opposing defenses honest. Throw in the best tight end in the division, Delanie Walker, as a big time threat in the receiving game who can also block.
Then you come to what looks like a loaded group of wide receivers, headlined by returning team-leader Rishard Matthews, free agent signee Eric Decker, and fifth overall pick Corey Davis. Depth at the position includes second-year receiver Tajae Sharpe and rookie Taywan Taylor, as well as receiver and returner Eric Weems and fellow former Falcon Harry Douglas.
The Titans offense is set up to be a juggernaut in 2017, and Marcus Mariota will be among the top quarterbacks in the league as a result.