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Power Rankings: Where Does WFT Stand Ahead of Week 1?

The regular season is almost here, but preseason rankings continue to dominate headlines.

The Washington Football Team has assembled one of the better defenses over the last few seasons. With recent draft picks like Chase Young and Montez Sweat, the defensive side of the ball is clearly the most dominant.

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But because of the questions on offense, such as at quarterback and on the offensive line, Washington isn't seen as one of the better overall teams in the NFC.

In previous rankings, Washington Football Team was ranked at No. 12 by both ESPN, and Pro Football Focus back in June.

Not to be outdone or forgotten, The Athletic recently conducted their own poll with five NFL executives to find the best 16 NFC teams.

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The Athletic feels a little better about Washington Football Team than the previous rankings did, showing them at No. 10, citing their head coach as a strength:

Washington finished fourth in the NFC last season only because its 7-9 record was enough to win the NFC East. Otherwise, the Football Team would have been about ninth in the conference, which is right about where voters project Washington to finish this season.

“They are going to be a classic Ron Rivera team, physical up front on both sides and then it’s what can Fitzy (Ryan Fitzpatrick) do in the pass game,” a voter said.

Fitzpatrick has twice started for teams that had top-five defenses using TruMedia’s EPA model. Those teams, the 2014 Texans and 2015 Jets, had winning records.

“Fitzpatrick is good until he’s not, and I doubt that magic lasts through the season,” a voter said.

Of the five voters, two ranked Washington Football Team at No. 8 while one other had them at No. 11.

Compared to the other NFC East teams, Washington fared well. The Dallas Cowboys were ranked best in the division at No. 7, followed by WFT at No. 10, the Philadelphia Eagles at No. 11, and the New York Giants at No. 15.

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