There are playoff teams like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Los Angeles Rams. Then there are underrated playoff contenders, examples being the Cleveland Browns, Minnesota Vikings, Denver Broncos, and the New York Giants. Now, why would these four teams be considered under-the-radar playoff contenders?
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The Broncos are hyped up as a playoff team; however, they must go through the Kanas City Chiefs and the Los Angeles Chargers. That being said, the Broncos have the roster to at least keep up with those teams with quarterback Russell Wilson, who they got in a trade with the Seattle Seahawks.
They already had an underrated rushing duo with Javonte Williams and Melvin Gordon on the offense. They have a sneakily good wide receiver room with Tim Patrick, Courtland Sutton, and Jerry Jeudy. Denver has a stud at cornerback with Patrick Surtain II. The existing roster, plus the addition of Wilson, has the potential to be a playoff contenders
Most Predictions for the AFC North have the Cleveland Browns finishing last in the division. Even though there are questions surrounding Deshaun Watson, they still have an incredible roster with an elite rushing duo in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Myles Garrett has been and continues to be a stud on defense for the browns. Garrett continues to be a nightmare to any offensive line coach that has to scheme for him.
To add to a great roster, they have Cade York, their kicker, who looks to be a stud so far. Even with questions at the quarterback position, they still have a great roster around Jacoby Brissett until Watson is back from suspension.
New York Giants
This may come as a surprise, but the Giants have the potential to be a wildcard team, with a weaker NFC conference alongside playing in the weak NFC East. At present, the Dallas Cowboys do not look like the playoff contender everyone hyped them up to be. However, Brian Daboll seems to be an upgrade over former head coach Joe Judge, and General Joe Schoen is seen as an upgrade over the awful Dave Gettleman.
Daniel Jones has the potential to be a starting caliber quarterback, and this is his prove-it a year to see if we will be their franchise quarterback. With weaker competition and the front office, the Giants have the potential to be a wild card, ultimately a playoff contender.
On paper, the Minnesota Vikings are playoff contenders, with Kirk Cousins leading the helm. Although they have a great offense alongside him, Justin Jefferson is torching defenses every week. On defense, they now have former Green Bay Packer Za’Darius Smith.
In the off-season, they fired their former head coach Mike Zimmer and replaced him with former Los Angels Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell. All these additions and a weaker NFC conference will contribute to the reason they can make the playoffs.
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