Surprise Potential NFL Playoff Teams in 2014 and Who Will Lead Them There

By Jeff Smith
2014 NFL Playoff Sleeper Teams
Mark J. Rebilas- USA TODAY Sports

The NFL is loaded with these types of questions leading up to the season. We all want to know who the serious sleepers are in the league. You know, the ones that could shock us all, get to the postseason and possibly win a game. Well, I’m not going to guarantee that these teams are going to win a game, but there are some very interesting options in terms of teams that are sleepers to make it to the postseason.

So what qualifies them as sleepers for starters? In this category, a team that is a sleeper is one that you can get solid odds on to make it to the postseason. Basically, that’s any team the majority wouldn’t consider as a probable team to make it past Week 17.

When you want to speak on probable sleepers to make it to the postseason, I think the Miami Dolphins really stick out as a potential team to do that. Everyone had some interest in them before OTAs started, and then when it was announced that Knowshon Moreno came into camp with a “bit of a belly”, people started turning away at a rapid rate. Don’t turn away so quickly, though.

Moreno will be ready for the year, and I believe he’ll bring them the pass-blocking and pass-catching abilities that are needed to help make Ryan Tannehill‘s life a whole lot easier. Speaking of Tannehill, I believe he’ll be the guy who helps get them to the promised land and could sneak them into a postseason berth as a Wild Card team.

Faith in the Dallas Cowboys has been all but lost to many fans for this season, but I’m not sure we should turn away so quickly. They have a young defense motivated with new defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli and an offense that’s led by a group of incredibly talented players. These are a few factors that you can put together and build on. Another key reason why I could see the Cowboys surprising many is that the NFC East seems to always be wide open and almost always comes down to the wire. Don’t look past Tony Romo in a year where he had to sit back in Week 17 and watch the team’s season get derailed from the sidelines with an injury.

Last but definitely not least, give me a long shot on the St. Louis Rams. This team is a pretty long shot to even contend for their division, in large part due to the fact that it’s possibly the toughest division in the league. Do you think that anyone on that defense cares how good the rest of those teams are though? Not a chance.

This Rams team is incredibly talented, and if Sam Bradford can stay healthy and protect the ball, I think Zac Stacy and an absolutely loaded defense could take the Rams to the playoffs in a year where not many expect them to be able to make it.

Jeff Smith is a Dallas Cowboys writer for Follow him on Twitter @JSM8ith, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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