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AFC South power rankings: Running backs

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Who has the best 1-2 punch with running backs in the AFC South?

Jim Steve-USA TODAY Sports

Like at the quarterback position, the AFC South's stable of running backs is similar in talent between several of the teams. Due to talented new additions to division such as Lamar Miller, Chris Ivory, Derrick Henry, and DeMarco Murray. Trying to decide which team has the better 1-2 punch between the Jaguars, Titans, Colts, and Texans is essentially nitpicking.

But, we are gonna do it anyways.

4. Indianapolis Colts: Frank Gore and Robert Turbin

Like with the quarterback power rankings, three of the AFC South teams are very close in talent at the position while one team lags behind. But despite being the frontrunner at quarterback, the Colts are the team that is lagging behind at the position of focus, this time.

Frank Gore has one of the best resumes among all running backs in his era. He even almost managed to be a 1,000-yard runner last season, which is an amazing accomplishment considering his age and his mileage.

Behind him is plodding power back Robert Turbin who has been a journeyman backup of sorts throughout his short career.

Gore can still keep a running game on schedule but at this point in his career, the arrow is pointing more downward than any other direction. The Colts just don't have a lot to be excited about t this position.

3. Tennessee Titans: Demarco Murray and Derrick Henry

Murray and Henry were both surprise additions to the Titans' roster considering how much they have invested in the position in recent years, but they both fit Mike Mularkey's philosophy to a tee, no matter how misplaced that philosophy may be.

Murray's disastrous season in Philadelphia last season is well documented, but the situation must be looked at with context. The Eagles' offensive line was in shambles and Chip Kelly could never mesh his playbook with Murray's skill set.

This does not mean Murray is clear of fault. He is still a back who has his best days far behind him. With that said, he is at least in a better situation in Tennessee than he was with the Eagles. A version of Murray that is in between his 2014 version of himself and his 2015 version of himself should be expected.

In Henry, the Titans have a player that is similar to Murray in terms of fit and strengths. He is the best athlete in their backfield though which should lead him to get his fair share of touches sooner than later.

2. Houston Texans: Lamar Miller and Alfred Blue

The Texans' run game has leaned on Arian Foster since seemingly the beginning of time. But that is the past, and welcoming the new era of the Texans backfield is former Miami Dolphins' back Lamar Miller.

Miller is supremely talented but was never entrusted by the Dolphins offensive staff to be the foundation piece of a functional running game. He needed a change of scenery as much as seemingly anybody in the league, and with the Texans, he should get all of the opportunities and consistency that he never got in Miami.

Blue is not a supremely talented back but he does bring experience in the system. Overall, Miller is the most dynamic back in the division and is almost entirely the reason for the high ranking.

1. Jacksonville Jaguars: T.J. Yeldon and Chris Ivory

Yeldon and Ivory barely edge the Texans as the best running back situation in the division. While neither offers the dynamic running ability of Lamar Miller. both are serviceable NFL starters who offer plus traits in a number of areas.

What Yeldon lacks in athleticism, he offers in instincts and pass catching ability. He is a homerun style back without the home run speed, which means he will turn impossible situations into gains for the offense but might not always provide the firepower you need.

Ivory meanwhile has a unique blend of power and explosion. He is a big back who is light enough on his feet that he can chose to run you over, run around you, or both.

Neither of these backs is an upper echelon back but having two starter-quality backs is more than most teams can ask for.

All in all, the AFC South features a number of solid, if not spectacular, running backs.