NFC East Completely Up For Grabs Now?
September 16, 2020
When the 2020 NFL season started, the NFC East division’s outlook was all about the Dallas Cowboys. With the talent on the roster and Mike McCarthy now in charge, it was not hard to see why oddsmakers made them the early favorite.
However, after Week One, is that the case or should that be the case now?
The NFC East In Week One
But then Mike McCarthy dropped the ball in a way that was very reminiscent of former head coach Jason Garrett. Carson Wentz played so bad Philly fans are now calling for Jalen Hurts. Washington shocked the world with a win over the Eagles—and did not look too bad in the process.
It is a little harder to make a case for the New York Giants. While the defense did not do a bad job against the Steelers, the offense—under the direction of Jason Garrett – failed. Daniel Jones showed some improvement, but the running game was non-existent.
With one of the best running backs in the NFL, that should not be the case. But after one week, oddsmakers are not looking to go crazy with the NFC East division odds just yet. DraftKings still has Dallas favored (-110) with the Eagles not far behind (+160). Washington’s odds are still long (+700), as are the Giants (+1300).
So – What Now?
What fans must be wondering now, though, is whether it’s time to jump off the Cowboys (or Eagles) bandwagon and onto someone else’s. On the one hand, it is a mistake to overreact to how games played out in Week One. But it is a lot better to get in on the underdog while the odds are longer.
While the payout from a wager with +1300 odds is enticing, it is tough to justify a case for the Giants. Daniel Jones had some good moments against the Steelers, enough for fans not to lose faith in him just yet. The defense did not play poorly, either.
But if they can’t do a better job of protecting Jones or get the run game going, they may end up with the No. 1 pick next year.
As for Washington, it may be hard to make a good case for them, but an interesting one could be made. Offensively, they didn’t light the Eagles up, but they did perform well enough to win—with the help of a stellar performance by their defense.
If you think their defense will dominate more often than not as they did against the Eagles, taking them now is a wise bet. But it was only one game…
When it comes to the Eagles, there is a reason for concern. The offensive line has injury issues, as does running back Miles Sanders. Wentz didn’t play well against the Redskins. His wide receivers didn’t either. The offense gave the defense a chance to shine—but it didn’t.
Again—it was only one game. But it was a very discouraging game. At their current odds, the risk is not worth the reward.
So, does that mean it is still the Cowboys division to lose? Is it safe to go ahead and bet on them to win the NFC East?
Defensively, the Rams moved the ball almost at will against the Cowboys defense. On the offensive end, they did a better job of utilizing Ezekiel Elliot than they did last year. All three wide receivers played a role. However, they did not push the ball downfield at all. Receivers did a poor job of getting separation, too.
On paper, the Cowboys look like a great team. But that was the case for most of the Jason Garrett Era—and that failed spectacularly. They looked a lot like one of Garrett’s teams. For now, there is no real reason to trust that they will be any better than they have been.
So—who should you bet on to win the NFC East? That is an excellent question. When you figure out the answer, feel free to let the rest of us in on it.