Since the league moved to a 12-team playoff format in 1990, an average of about six new teams made the playoffs every year. This long history of churn among NFL teams means that it's highly probable that five or six teams that did not make the playoffs in 2015 will make the playoffs in 2016.
Six teams make the playoffs in the NFC every year, and it's a virtual certainty that some of last year's playoff teams will stumble. Last year, the Vikings and Redskins were the new playoff participants in the NFC, while the Panthers, Cardinals, Packers and Seahawks repeated as playoff participants from 2014.
The year before, half of the NFC East teams changed versus 2013. The Packers, Seahawks, and Panthers repeated as playoff participants from 2013, while the Cowboys, Cardinals, and Lions made the 2014 playoffs after missing out the previous year. They replaced the Eagles, Saints, and 49ers, who failed to repeat their playoff appearances from 2013.
Coincidentally, that means that 11 of the 16 NFC teams made the playoffs the last three seasons. Sitting at home for at least the last three postseasons: the once mighty, the perennially underachieving , the much-hyped , the Cutler-led , and the Bucs, who last made the playoffs under Jon Gruden.
Which brings us to our question of the day: Last year, the NFC was represented, in order of seeding, by the Panthers, Cardinals, Vikings, Redskins, Packers, and Seahawks. Which of these teams do you think are in for a rude awakening in 2015 and will not make it back to the playoffs?
Place your vote in the attached poll. We'll assume that the three teams that get the most votes will not make the playoffs this season. In a follow-up post, you'll be able to vote on which three new teams you think will make it to the postseason this year.