Five surprise playoff contenders following the NFL Draft

By Vincent Frank

Now that the 2017 NFL Draft is in the books, pretty much all the big off-season moves around the league have already been made. Sure there will be some moves here and there throughout the summer, but most of the teams have their rosters set to an extent following the draft.

It’s in this that we have a pretty good idea of which squads will be in contention for the Super Bowl. Those names remain the same. After a whole host of improvements on both sides of the ball, the New England Patriots remain odds-on favorites. Over in the NFC, the Atlanta Falcons and Dallas Cowboys look to be in good standing.

However, there are a ton of teams out there who improved at a great clip during the offseason. These teams aced last week’s NFL Draft, pretty much indicating that they will be much more competitive than last season.

The focus here is on under-the-radar teams. Some cellar-dwellers. Others who simply don’t seem to be legitimate playoff contenders. These are the teams that saw their stocks rise during the recent draft and could be in line for playoff contention in 2017.

For the purpose of clarity, we’re not going to include obvious up-and-coming teams such as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Tennessee Titans. That’s already known.

Instead, we’re looking at a Colts team that addressed major needs on defense and a Los Angeles Chargers squad that went for immediate impact players in the draft. These are among the five teams that we can call surprise playoff contenders following the 2017 NFL Draft.