2012 champs: San Francisco 49ers
Likeliest threat in 2013: Seattle Seahawks
Admittedly, this is the easiest of the eight divisions in which to recognize a threat. Seattle has put together a tremendous football team, especially considering the offseason acquisitions of Percy Harvin and Cliff Avril. The club also produced a nifty draft class and an under-the-radar signing in Michael Bennett. Along with Avril, Bennett should really boost the defensive line. Sure, the PED stuff is a concern. However, it's encouraging that the Seahawks destroyed the 49ers at home last season -- and could have taken the other meeting, too. NFL.com users are in agreement with Seattle's status here, seeing more than just an NFC West title.
How it can happen:
» The Seahawks could have won at San Francisco, if not for six drops. Seattle's receivers as a whole need to be more reliable and clutch than they were in 2012.
» The PED suspensions and allegations cannot be a distraction. Pete Carroll won't let them be.
» Tackle Breno Giacomini is one of the weaker links on a Super Bowl-contending club. If he plays well, the sky's the limit for Russell Wilson and the 'Hawks.