2018 NFC East Preview

1. Philadelphia Eagles– 2017 was their year and it was definitely a season to remember. After their win against the Panthers on a Thursday night in October, I was sold on them and how they were winning games. The offense did its business and the defense was also chipping in as well. They were the best team in the NFL last year without question. They won 13 games, won their first division title in three years and finally bought a Lombardi trophy to the city of brotherly love and enter the year as the favorites to win their division again. The big question entering training camp will be about the health of Carson Wentz and will he be able to suit up week one after suffering a torn ACL last season. Their offense returns many key pieces from last year’s title team. Alshon Jeffrey, Zach Ertz, and Nelson Agholor name a few and Jay Ajayi is the team’s new starting running back after deciding not to bring back LeGarrette Blount. The defense may have lost a few pieces, but gained one in a trade with Seattle to bring in Michael Bennett. It’s time to put the title to defense.

2. Dallas Cowboys– It was a disappointing year in Arlington for the Cowboys. After a 2016 campaign that saw them win 13 games and clinch the top seed in the NFC, they struggled to really get anything going and missed the playoffs. Ezekiel Elliott served his six-game suspension later in the season and that decision really affected the team because his presence was definitely missed. It’s incredible how one player’s presence can affect the entire team and Dak Prescott looked like a different player without him. This year, the Cowboys offense will look slightly different. Tight end Jason Witten finally decided to call it a career after 15 seasons with the team and Dez Bryant was released and after Tony Romo retired, he wasn’t the same player with Dak. The Cowboys defense has been absolutely atrocious and inconsistent over the last few years. This could be a make or break year for Jason Garrett.

3. Washington Redskins– They will always just be an average team of many people. However, the Redskins feel they’ve definitely upgraded at quarterback after deciding not to sign Kirk Cousins to a long-term deal. The team made a deal with the Kansas City Chiefs to acquire Alex Smith. He brings veteran leadership and experience to a relatively young roster. In order for them to be successful, they’ll need some of their young skill players to step it up and make a difference such as Josh Doctson. Their defense has been in good shape since signing Josh Norman back in 2016. Only time will tell who they really are and what we can expect from them.

4. New York Giants– 2017 was supposed to be a year where the Giants were to contend and make noise in the NFC and they weren’t even close to that last season. They lose their first six games, they lose Odell for the year with a broken ankle, Brandon Marshall goes down with an injury, the offensive line struggled and so did their defense. We also saw Ben McAdoo decide to bench Eli Manning and snap his streak of consecutive games played and after that move, he was fired. Pat Shurmur is now the Giants head coach and he’ll get his second shot at coaching. The Giants should be a much-improved team offensively with Odell returning, Sterling Shepard as the number two receiver, Evan Engram at tight end and Saquon Barkley at running back. On defense, they will need to play with better effort and hold leads late in games. The Giants have a brutal seven-game stretch to open the season.

2018 Predictions
1. Eagles (12-4)
2. Cowboys (9-7)
3. Giants (7-9)
4. Redskins (6-10)

The Philadelphia Eagles will win the East once again. I think Carson Wentz will pick up where he left off last season before getting injured and the offense won’t miss a beat, there’s no way that Doug Pedersen will allow that to happen. The defense will do its part and everything will simply take off from there. This is the team that you have to take down if you want to win anything in the league.