The NFC East has traditionally been thought of as one of the most powerful divisions in the NFL. The division boasts the reigning Super Bowl champions, the New York Giants (3-2), as well as the Philadelphia Eagles (3-2), the Dallas Cowboys (2-2), and the Washington Redskins (2-3). All four of these historic franchises have an abundance of talent on their rosters and are poised to make a run at the playoffs.
The New York Giants have won two of the last five Super Bowls, and the franchise is in a position to compete for another title for many years to come. The Giants boast one of the most complete rosters in the NFL on both sides of the ball. Eli Manning leads an explosive offense that is currently ranked second (through Sunday) in total offense in the NFL, while the defense is powered by Jason Pierre-Paul and the team’s talented defensive line. Although the Giants are currently battling some key injuries and have a difficult schedule ahead of them, they are in a great position to win their division and reach the playoffs yet again.
Michael Vick has had a rough start to his 2012 regular season, throwing six interceptions and fumbling away the ball five times. But regardless of Vick’s turnovers, the Philadelphia Eagles are still enjoying a 3-2 record atop the NFC East. The Eagles have made some key free agent acquisitions in recent years to bolster their defensive unit with hopes of reaching the Super Bowl for the first time since 2005. Although Philadelphia is currently leading the division, the Eagles have played inconsistent football and need to make some drastic improvements if they would like to reach the playoffs. Though winning the division isn’t out of the question, the Eagles best opportunity for a playoff berth may be a wild card seed.
The Dallas Cowboys have an immense amount of pressure on the organization to not only reach the playoffs, but also win another Super Bowl. Jerry Jones has made his expectations perfectly clear; he wants another Lombardi Trophy. The Cowboys drastically improved their defense in the offseason. They added Brandon Carr via free agency and drafted Morris Claiborne to shore up the team’s secondary unit. But the Cowboys’ greatest weakness is their inconsistency on offense. Tony Romo’s play varies wildly from week to week, which is why the Cowboys will be on the outside looking in at the playoffs once again this year.
Robert Griffin III has revitalized that Washington Redskins organization with his electrifying play. The team finally has a quarterback that it can build around, and with the additions of wide receiver Pierre Garcon and running back Alfred Morris, the Redskins have a reputable offensive unit once again. The defensive unit is aging and the Redskins have to get younger at numerous key positions. Brian Orakpo, one of the team’s star linebackers, has already been put on the injured reserve list with a torn pectoral muscle. Although the Redskins may be a playoff bound team in the future, they have a lot of developing to do before they get there.
Every team in the NFC East is a dangerous team with multiple weapons on both sides of the line of scrimmage. With all of the talented rosters, it is highly feasible that two teams from the division make the playoffs this year. Although it may be too early to determine which team will walk away with the division title, it’s safe to say that this division is full of Super Bowl caliber teams.
Chris Hunt is a sports writer that resides in Charlotte, North Carolina.
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