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2014 NFL Season: Predicting 5 Sleeper Teams To Make The Playoffs

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Predicting 5 Sleeper Teams To Make The NFL Playoffs

Rex Ryan and Geno Smith
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Every year, like clockwork, two NFL teams in each conference who did not make the playoffs the season prior make it to the postseason. These franchises don't always look like much before the season starts, but they find a way to get it done nonetheless.

Here's a look at five sleeper teams to make the postseason in 2014.

5. Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals
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5. Arizona Cardinals

 Arizona Cardinals
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The Cardinals have a top five defense, a running game that looks incredibly solid with Andre Ellington emerging as a top back, and a quarterback in Carson Palmer who has seen his better days, but is undoubtedly capable enough to lead a team on a playoff run. The Cardinals take the Rams' place as a sleeper postseason team after Sam Bradford's injury.

4. Baltimore Ravens

 Baltimore Ravens
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4. Baltimore Ravens

 Baltimore Ravens
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Baltimore isn't getting a ton of love heading into the 2014 campaign, but the AFC North is weak and the Cincinnati Bengals and Pittsburgh Steelers have plenty of flaws. The Ravens could easily sneak into the postseason and win the division at 9-7.

3. San Diego Chargers

 San Diego Chargers
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3. San Diego Chargers

San Diego Chargers
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San Diego made a surprise playoff appearance in 2013, yet the Chargers never seem to be surrounded by much buzz nationally. Only two spots are coming out of the AFC West in 2014 -- the Denver Broncos, as well as Phillip Rivers and the Chargers. Sorry Kansas City Chiefs' fans.

2. Detroit Lions

 Detroit Lions
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2. Detroit Lions

 Detroit Lions
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Detroit has a ton of talent on offense that can undoubtedly thrive as a unit and a defense that would be good enough to tag along. New head coach Jim Caldwell brings the Lions a much needed calmer presence than Jim Schwartz ever showcased, which could help the team gel and make the playoffs.

1. New York Jets

New York Jets
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1. New York Jets

 New York Jets
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Everybody loves to hate the Jets and, as a fan of theirs, I would agree with the notion that Geno Smith is a pretty bad quarterback as constituted. However, the team still went 8-8 with an impossibly abysmal offense in 2013 and their defense has enough talent to mask the offense's weakness under center.

Timothy Downs is a St. Louis Rams/NFL writer for RantSports.com. You can add him on Google or follow on Twitter @Tidow1212.