With the 2010 NFL Draft in the history books, and training camps fast approaching, it's time to look at the possibilities for the upcoming season. Each team in the NFC East has questions to answer in key areas that will determine their level of success over the next year.
Is Doug Free capable of filling in at left tackle?
When Dallas let go of Flozell Adams, many analysts assumed that Dallas would pursue his replacement at left tackle in the draft, or free agency. It didn't happen (at least not yet), and Dallas looks ready to proceed with the unproven fourth-year pro Free starting at the position.
The confidence in Free seems to be Dallas' biggest gamble heading into 2010. If Free can't protect Romo's blind side, it could be a long season for the Cowboys.
Is Phillip Dillard the solution to their void at middle linebacker?
The middle linebacker position was arguably the Giants' biggest need heading into the draft. However, instead of reaching for a need, New York waited until the fourth round to grab Dillard.
Dillard is on the small side for playing the middle (6'1", 245 pounds), and may have a difficult time shedding blockers. If the revamped defensive line can't take the pressure off the Giants linebackers this year, Dillard could be exposed in the middle.
Is Kevin Kolb the real deal?
The Eagles took a big gamble by trading Donovan McNabb to a division rival, and thrusting Kolb into the starting role. The future of the Philadelphia Eagles is now in his hands, and the question at quarterback dwarfs all other questions the Eagles have.
Philadelphia has a lot of confidence in the unproven commodity of Kolb. Will he still be able to perform at a high level when opposing defenses have enough of his film to analyze? Only time will tell, but Kolb is a definite risk to the continued success of the Eagles.
Can Trent Williams solidify the left tackle spot?
Anyone who watched the Washington Redskins in 2009 could immediately spot their biggest weakness: the offensive line. In particular, at the left tackle position. Losing long time anchor Chris Samuels was a huge blow at the most important position on the front.
So, it was no surprise that Shanahan selected a left tackle at number four overall. What was surprising to some was that he chose Williams over Russell Okung. Shanahan explained that Williams' athleticism was a better fit for the new zone blocking scheme.
Washington's success in 2010 rides with the offensive line, and in large part with Williams' ability to protect McNabb's blind side. If Williams can consistently give McNabb time to throw, the Redskins offense could flourish. If not, McNabb may be feeling the same pains that Jason Campbell experienced in 2009.