The NFC East was known as the toughest division in football for a long time but they have been up and down lately. The one thing that the NFC East always has is intrigue. Chip Kelly and a recovering RG3 add to the always intriguing aspects of the NFC East that already include Eli Manning and of course the Dallas Cowboys. This could be soon known again as the toughest division in the NFL again.
Washington Redskins- I might not be typing “Redskins” that much longer but that’s another story. Nobody can talk Washington without bringing up either Barack Obama or Robert Griffin the 3rd. After he burst on the scene last year to win offensive rookie of the year, lead his team to a division title and playoff berth. He also tore his ACL and is rehabbing as I type. He’s shooting for the first week of the season but it’s not guaranteed. RG3 isn’t the only important redskin coming of injury. Brian Orakpo will be ready for week 1 and will be a major boost to the defense. Add him to an already good defense that added some ball hawks in David Amerson and Phillip Thomas and RG3 to an improving offense, then another division title is well within reach.
Dallas Cowboys- America’s Team has been more of America’s soap opera lately. Jason Garret could be a lame duck coach if they don’t make some serious improvements. Lucky for him they defiantly have the talent to contend. The defense will be better simply because they are healthier and getting all their players back. Monte Kiffen will have that defense on point unlike the confusing Rob Ryan defense. They have the much maligned Tony Romo at QB but they could do a lot worse (looking at you Jets, Browns and Cardinals). Romo is actually a top tier QB and has weapons that can dominate defenses. Dez Bryant is an emerging star, Jason Witten is a hall of famer still going strong and Miles Austin is a great 3rd option if he gets his hamstring right. If that offensive line, which got better through the draft, can at least be average then the Cowboys can take off behind Romo and what should be an improved running game as well. They are my pick to win the division this year.
New York Giants- Perhaps the most stable team in the division has still had its problems. Most noteworthy is the WR issues. Victor Cruz’s contract situation this year and Hakeem Nicks impending contract situation next year have been slight distractions. Of course the Giants will get it done but it was a slight problem. They have Eli Manning so they’re never far from contention as long as he doesn’t have one of those years that he throws a hefty amount of picks. The defense is in transition with new pieces and the loss of playmakers Osi Umenyiora and Kenny Phillips. They are still looking for linebacking help but they can still get a hellacious pass rush so that will help the entire defense. The Giants are always a threat in this division.
Philadelphia Eagles- The Andy Reid era is over after over 10 years and the Chip Kelly era has begun. This era will be a lost faster than the old one if it’s anything like Oregon, where Chip Kelly came from. He brought back Mike Vick to run his breakneck offense but no one knows exactly how he will run it or if a pace that fast translates to the NFL game. Mike Vick, or whoever wins the QB battle, will have the weapons and also a very improved offensive line which is bring back Jason Peters off injury and add #4 overall pick Lane Johnson. They have been active in free agency and had a great draft to help the transition. They are also switching from a 4-3 to the 3-4 defense. Conner Barwin was brought in the start alongside Trent Cole so the pass rush should be good. The question mark for the Eagles defense is the secondary which was absolutely putrid last year and lost their best 2 corners in the offseason. That doesn’t spell immediate success this year but if the offense is as good as advertised they will surprise teams.