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Alex Smith
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Smith
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Every NFL season contains its share of surprising teams and disappointing teams. Who will fall into those categories in 2014?

Aside from the Denver Broncos, which team in the AFC is truly a lock to win its division or lock up a playoff spot? Conversely, the NFC is chock-full of contenders, and with so much talent throughout the conference some teams are primed to be left on the outside looking in come January.

Here’s a look at five teams that are poised to take a step backward this season, whether it’s a weaker record or missing the playoffs:

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