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  • Washington leads the NFC East right now at 4–2, but with both Philadelphia and Dallas not far behind at 3–4, this division is still wildly up in the air. How might it play out?
By Conor Orr
October 24, 2018

While the Giants work to install sideline hydration and urination policies that will not disrupt the team’s rhythm, the rest of the NFC East is log-jammed in the kind of beautiful, competitive mess that we find them in every couple of years.

Washington leads the division at 4–2, even though there doesn’t feel like an ounce of permanence there. The Eagles and Cowboys are both 3–4, but behaving like teams who plan on being in contention this winter.

So how would we handicap the division the rest of the way? Let’s ruin your Wednesday morning by giving it a shot:

Philadelphia: 2–1

General manager Howie Roseman’s track record tells us that he won’t be quiet at the trade deadline. There are plenty of eager culture-changers out there looking to discard talent for cheap and the Eagles will almost certainly make some noise. They were playing for the Amari Cooper sweepstakes and will almost certainly be phoning teams with expendable running backs. The Eagles are the safest bet to rise because they have the best play-caller, the best quarterback and the best defensive coordinator out of any team in contention.

Washington: 5–1

They’ve beaten three semi-talented to good teams in Carolina, Green Bay and Dallas, but were throttled in their first matchup against a top-tier team (New Orleans). The offense is still mildly efficient considering they’re without their star rookie running back and two of their best wideouts are working through nagging injuries. Teams can work into form over the course of the season, and assuming Adrian Peterson stays healthy, Alex Smith has the foundation to get more comfortable. This could be the kind of oddball season where ball control and solid special teams can win a division.

Dallas: 10–1

Assuming the Amari Cooper trade doesn’t cause a drastic change in their standard operating procedure, Dallas will still be a feared offense that suffers a bit from a lack of imagination. Their defense, though, is talented with room to grow which is why we cannot count them out.

N.Y. Giants: 500–1

The Giants have gone from win-now to rebuild preparation over the course of a few weeks. They’re still paying one former coach and don’t want to get in the habit of cutting people loose after a bad seasons. The rest of the way here will be more about coach Pat Shurmur learning to negate the slowly-recovering offensive line and navigating the transition from Eli Manning to the great beyond.

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