2014-15 NFL Breakdown: NFC East

Posted on 21 August 2014


 

The 2014-15 NFL season is almost upon us.  Below are my thoughts and predictions on how the NFC East will shake out.

 

Philadelphia Eagles (10-6)

 

The Eagles are the team with the fewest question marks coming into this season.  This team should only improve in the second season under Head Coach Chip Kelly and his ‘fast break’ offense.  The addition of Darren Sproles will fit this offense to a T.  Though 31 years old and only 5’6” tall, Sproles has avoided big hits in his career because of his speed and his small size making it difficult to get direct hits on him.  There is nothing special about the Eagles’ defense, but Malcolm Jenkins at safety is a nice addition and will help.  Though the fast-paced offense will have this defense on the field a lot, they are capable of making enough plays for the Eagles to win the division, even with the tough schedule as each team in the division squares off against opponents in the formidable NFC West.

 

Washington Redskins (8-8)

 

All the talk about the Redskins this offseason has dealt with the team name controversy.  That is a topic for another day.  Jay Gruden will take his shot at head coaching, and over the last few years as Bengals Offensive Coordinator, he has brought quarterback Andy Dalton along and will look to do so with Robert Griffin III.  RG3 should be healthier with his knee this year and, in the new offense, shouldn’t take the hits to which the Shannahan’s exposed him.  Jason Hatcher is a nice pick up from the Cowboys.  Hatcher is a big time player at Defensive Tackle both stopping the run and rushing the passer and should be a borderline All-Pro this year.  Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan are both back and will cause problems for any offense they play, rushing off the edge.  DeAngelo Hall still gets the job done at corner.  This team will be much better than last season.  The more Washington wins, the less an issue the team name will play this year.  But, as stated earlier, playing the loaded NFC West, there just aren’t enough wins for this team to reach the playoffs.

 

New York Giants (6-10)

 

Prior to the preseason, I thought the Giants were going to have a bounce-back season and possibly make a Super Bowl run.  However, as the preseason has unfolded, it has become apparent to me that that won’t be the case.  New Offensive Coordinator Ben McAdoo has been brought in to turn this offense into a West Coast Offense as a means of helping Eli Manning cut down on his turnovers.  During the preseason, Manning has not looked good in this new offense.  With running back David Wilson lost to retirement and a shaky offensive line, Eli will need to be at his best all year.  Rashad Jennings and rookie Andre Williams should somewhat offset the loss of Wilson a bit in the running game, but he will be missed.  Dominic Rodgers-Cromartie and Robert Ayers are nice additions on the defensive end, and this defense should be fine all year.  If Eli can get it going throughout the year and this team can hang in there for the first 12 games, I wouldn’t count them out from making a title run.  Eli Manning has a history as a clutch performer and history has demonstrated that you can never count out the Giants.  But, based on the preseason, I just don’t see this team making the playoffs this season.

 

Dallas Cowboys (4-12)

 

There will be some good news for the Cowboys this season.  They won’t finish 8-8 for a fourth straight year, Jason Garrett likely will not finish the season as Head Coach, and they should get a good draft choice.  Despite the injuries, I think the defense will improve (it can’t get much worse than last season).  But, I believe that they will still get torched routinely.  The offensive line has the potential to be the best in football, but their playmakers will likely continue to make the usual mistakes.  If The Cowboys were going to correct the disastrous mistakes they always make, they would have done so three years ago, and they can’t do it.  Tony Romo and Dez Bryant will put up big numbers, but still make critical mistakes at the most inopportune moments.  The NFC West will feast on the hapless Cowboys, and while there are winnable games when they play the AFC South, the Cowboys will lose their share of those winnable games as has become their habit.  In the two scheduled games that differ from those of their NFC East rivals, Dallas plays the Saints whose offense will destroy them like last season and the Bears who they can’t beat.  The Cowboys have a tough early schedule, and their season could get away from them fast – making it very ugly in Dallas.  If they get off to a bad start, Garrett will likely get the same treatment as Wade Phillips who got the ax after a 1-7 start in 2010.  Cowboy’s fans need to hope this season is rock bottom, and they can reorganize for the future after this year.

 





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One Response to “2014-15 NFL Breakdown: NFC East”

  1. Gosnell Siddons says:

    Excellent breakdown!!! I’m gonna call my bookie and place my bets.


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