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Jan 5, 2014; Green Bay, WI, USA; Green Bay Packers running back Eddie Lacy (27) rushes the ball against Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Andy Mulumba (55) during the second quarter of the 2013 NFC wild card playoff football game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Power Rankings: Predictions for NFC North

2014 NFL Power Rankings will be in full force as we enter the season. Here are a few predictions for the NFC North and where each team will begin the season, and end.

GREEN BAY PACKERS

To begin: The Packers have the potential to be extremely good in 2014, and there’s no reason to believe that they can’t be at the top of the NFC once everything gets going. To start the year, expect to see the Packers within the top-10, potentially cracking the top-5.

To close: There is a lot of buzz surrounding Aaron Rodgers and his ceiling this year. It’s certainly high – maybe high enough to win the NFC North with ease. I predict the Packers will win the divison and enter the regular season in the top-5 of most 2014 NFL Power Rankings due to an offensive outburst.

CHICAGO BEARS

To begin: This team has a lot to prove, but there are a lot of pieces on the roster to give the Bears a chance to compete in this tough division. I wouldn’t be shocked to see Chicago listed just inside the top-half of most rankings.

To close: Two things will decide this season: Jay Cutler and the defense. If those two things can mesh, I like the Bears’ chances. I predict Chicago will have decent success, but not enough to crack the playoffs, ranking them in the middle of the pack yet again.

DETROIT LIONS

To begin: Expectations are high for Jim Caldwell’s team, but there are a fair amount of question marks surrounding the team. Because of this, expect them to be ranked close to the 20′s in many rankings. Some may give them a higher grade, but that will be due to Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson only.

To close: It’s hard to expect a team that relies on a few players to get the job done in crunch time. While I think the Lions can be very good, I don’t see it happening for them this year. They won’t be horrible, giving them a spot where they started, just below the middle of the pack.

MINNESOTA VIKINGS

To begin: This team is a work in progress, so it’s not fair to expect a whole lot of success from Minnesota this year. They did a lot to get better in the offseason, but I still expect to see them near the bottom of most power rankings.

To close: I think Teddy Bridgewater will make his appearance in 2014, but he won’t reach his full potential until his second year in the NFL. To end the year, the Vikings will likely come in near the bottom of the pack with the potential to be a bit better if they win the close games.

Tags: 2014 NFL Power Rankings NFC North NFL

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