The Bucs also need improvement in their running game, which ranked No. 24 in the NFL last year. That would start with Doug Martin’s return to his 1,402-yard form of 2015. His rushing total fell to 421 yards in 2016, as he missed seven games due to injury and the final game under an NFL substance abuse suspension that will carry over to the first three games this season. Jacquizz Rodgers was an effective substitute last year, so he’ll likely carry the load early on.
Coach Dirk Koetter also needs his defense to step up against both the run and pass since Tampa Bay ranked a mediocre 22nd in each area last season. Kwon Alexander and Lavonte David will lead the way, and significant improvement will be needed from 2016 top pick Vernon Hargreaves, the corner who was targeted more than any NFL defensive back last season and allowed a 71 percent completion percentage.
As for Tennessee, its path to a division title should be easier. A big reason the Titans are a popular pick to win the AFC South is their major upgrade in talent over the past two years. That starts with Mariota, and quarterback issues for the other teams in the division are major factors. Mariota is the second best quarterback in the division behind Andrew Luck, but the Colts QB is returning from shoulder surgery and will start training camp on the physically unable to perform list. The Colts have no chance if Luck is not healthy.
Giving Kluber the run support he needed were Indians outfielders Brandon Guyer and Michael Brantley, who each drove in three runs in the victory over the Blue Jays. Guyer hit a three-run homer in the sixth while Brantley went 3 for 4 with a double and scored twice.
The Rockies also got three RBIs from a pair of players in their 13-3 drubbing Patriots Cheap Jerseys of the Pirates. Nolan Arenado and Mark Reynolds, who homered twice, drove in three runs apiece. Reynolds and Charlie Blackmon, who NFL Jerseys Free Shipping also homered, each had three-hit games.