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The Chicago Bears will shape much of the AFC South’s future

The Jacksonville Jaguars are the only AFC South team with a decent amount of stability this offseason.

After winning the divisional crown, the Jaguars will enter the 2023 season with a 23-year-old franchise quarterback, an NFL Coach of the Year finalist, and an almost entirely intact coaching staff.

The rest of the AFC South is close to the opposite. The Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts both hired new head coaches and are expected to target quarterbacks at the top of the 2023 NFL Draft. The Tennessee Titans appear to be in the market for a new passer too.

But what quarterbacks land in the Jaguars’ division will largely depend on what the Chicago Bears decide to do with the No. 1 overall pick.

The Bears currently have two options: stick with Justin Fields or draft a new quarterback.

While the majority believe Chicago will roll with Fields into the 2023 season, that isn’t an unanimous opinion. ESPN’s Todd McShay says the Bears should take Alabama’s Bryce Young with the first pick. Former New York Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum thinks the same thing.

If Chicago does end up picking Young, that’d leave the Texans and Colts to decide which quarterbacks they believe are the second- and third- best of the class.

But if the Bears decide Fields is their guy, both Houston and Indianapolis could be in the market for the top draft pick. Colts owner Jim Irsay isn’t even really trying to hide as much.

The Jaguars have reason to feel good about their situation compared to their division rivals, regardless what the Bears choose to do. But the future of the Texans and Colts will be largely shaped by Chicago’s decision.

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Story originally appeared on Jaguars Wire