Giants Should Be Fine in NFC East

Jonathan YaghoubiContributor IMay 30, 2009

There are plenty of questions to be asked of every team in the NFC East heading into the 2009 NFL season. How will Eli Manning fare in his first full season without wide receiver Plaxico Burress?

In Dallas, a similar question can be asked of Tony Romo, who also lost a big target with the departure of Terrell Owens.

And while the Redskins made their usual free-agent splash this off-season by signing Albert Haynesworth, the Eagles strengthened their squad with a strong draft.

The favorites of the division are the Giants. Although the Eagles had a pretty good draft, and have a history of young players making a quick impact, I just don't feel they will be able to stay up with the Giants because of all the veteran leadership the team lost.

Meanwhile, the Cowboys and Redskins will take steps back if they had not already last year.

The Giants should be about the same as they were last season but with no Plaxico Burress, the wide receiver spot looks to be the only question mark. The drafting of Hakim Nicks addresses those issues, as big things are expected out of him.

Don't count the Giants out yet in hopes of getting Boldin from the Cardinals. If Anquan Boldin hires Tom Condon as his new agent (where Boldin reportedly is leaning), the Giants could have an edge if Boldin is traded, considering Condon also represents Eli Manning.

Boldin still has not gotten a new contract and had made it known that he has not happy with his current pay. If the Giants somehow get Boldin, the they will run away with the division. As of now, they are a slight edge to win.

They still have the best offensive lines in the NFL and just resigned Brandon Jacobs and is ready to continue to be a monster in the backfield. The loss of Derrick Ward will hurt a little, as their shot gun draw formation might not be as effective.

However, Ahmad Bradshaw proved how explosive and effective runner he can be during the Giants Superbowl run. He is certainly capable of of carrying the load.

The Giants have the best defense in the division and it only gets that much better with the return of Osi Umenyiora. When a player of his skill returns, he can only make the guys around the defense that much better.

The key for him is to stay healthy and if he does, the Giants should have not many problems holding the offense down.

The Cowboys have parted ways with Terrell Owens, so it would seem Tony Romo's regular season performance will take a dip.When your team has a reality show looking for some talent, you know they have some problems.

It seems to me that once December rolls around, Tony Romo and the Cowboys just stop playing. The only positive is the departure of T.O which is already a plus.

However, you can't deny the guy's talents, although he had a very sub-par season. It looks as if the Cowboys window has passed and the Wade Phillips era is slowly coming to an end.

The Washington Redskins? Well, they'll still be tough to beat, but they don't seem to have the makeup of a division contender right now. They had very impressive start to the season by going 6-2 that included road division wins against the Eagles and Cowboys.

The came a Monday Night Football game at home against the Steelers in which the Steelers fans outnumbered the Redskin fans. To make matters worse, the Steelers dominated game winning 24-6 and putting the Redskins in downward spiral.

They would go on to lose four of the next five games and ended any chance of getting in the playoffs, let alone winning the NFC East.

The big question for me is that if Jason Campbell is ready to take that next step as franchise quarterback.

There was talk during the off-season that the skins explored getting Jay Cutler which shows how much faith the Skins truly have in their quarterback.

Then reports began circulating in the two weeks leading up to the NFL Draft that the Redskins had become seriously interested in QB Mark Sanchez to further show how the little faith they have.

If Jason get it going, the the Skins could have a real shot. He doesn't have the great receiving core that other teams might have, so a lot has to be relied on the bruised body of Clinton Portis.

Portis is the heart and soul of the skins offense but just does not have the support group on offense to fully show his talents.

The ‘Skins struck draft gold by picking DE Brian Orakpo from Texas as the 13th choice in the draft, but trades left them without second and fourth round picks. with that being said, you the Skins are expecting some big things from him.

Add to the fact thet big $100 million signing of Albert Haynesworth, and the Redskins hope some big things on defense. With that being said, I don't expect any better than an 8-8 season.

The Philadelphia went through the craziest off-season of any NFC East team. It saw the departure of a number of team leaders, including the bizarre release of Brian Dawkins that saw an Eagles employee getting fired for voicing his displeasure of him being let go.

He was the vocal defensive leader but at 35 years old, you could see why the Eagles elected to go another way. Offensive tackle Jon Runyan and Tra Thomas are both gone.

Philly fans found themselves torn about the loss of these beloved figures, especially Dawkins.

Now, after the NFL Draft, Eagles fans find themselves primarily satisfied with the slew of the team’s maneuvering since the beginning of the off-season. 

The first bold move was trading a first- and fourth-round pick and a sixth-rounder in 2010 to Buffalo for two-time Pro Bowl left tackle Jason Peters.

It didn’t stop there, as the youth movement spread to the Eagles’ skill positions. The Eagles traded up and shocked a few by drafting the very talented Missouri WR Jeremy Maclin as the 19th pick in the first round.

They added Pitt RB LeSean McCoy, described as a Brian Westbrook clone and the best pass-catching running back in the draft.

The Eagles also proved their draft day savvy, pulling off trade for CB Ellis Hobbs from the New England Patriots for two fifth-round picks.

Based on all that, it will come down to the Eagles and Giants with the G-Men taking it with 12-4 record while the Eagles will go 11-5. The Cowboys will follow with 8-8 and Redskins will finish last with 7-9.


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