2013 NFL Playoff Teams That Could Come Up Short of Postseason in 2014

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2013 NFL Playoff Teams That Could Come Up Short of Postseason in 2014
USA TODAY Sports

With each new NFL season comes a chance for each team to start anew, to forget the struggles of yesteryear and focus on the here and now. 

Due in part to the NFL's scheduling protocol, making the playoffs in consecutive seasons is no easy task, especially as a division champion, because you then get the gift of playing each of the other division champions from your conference the following season. 

Teams that finished second or below in the division only have to face one conference division champion outside of their own division's winner. Instead, they play two teams who placed the same within their division (For example, the last place team in AFC West in 2013 [Oakland Raiders] plays the last place team in the AFC North [Cleveland Browns].)

This scheduling procedure allows lesser teams a better chance of bouncing back from of a poor season and even of making the playoffs. 

There's also the pressure associated with defending a division title that many such winners fail to use constructively. 

Consider also that the gap in talent from top to bottom in the NFL is relatively small, and it becomes inevitable that some teams will rise while others fall. 

Read on to find out which teams could experience such a fall and consequently miss the playoffs in 2014.

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