The SEC East might be watered down a bit when compared to the West, but it’s still a rough division.

Tennessee, which returns 17 starters and also has tremendous special teams, is the favorite in the East. Anything less than a trip to Atlanta for the conference title game will be a disappointment.

One of three first-year coaches in the division, Kirby Smart inherited a quality roster at Georgia and also hosts the Volunteers in Athens. Florida — defending champs from a year ago — hasn’t been getting a lot of respect in the preseason publications. Expect coach Jim McElwain to exploit that.

Kentucky, Missouri, South Carolina and Vanderbilt aren’t supposed to contend in 2016. However, the Wildcats and Commodores in particular are on the rise and might pull off a big upset along the way.

Be sure to watch the video above to review my picks for first and last in the SEC East this season.

John Crist is the senior writer for Saturday Down South, a member of the FWAA and a voter for the Heisman Trophy. Send him an e-mail, like him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter.