Preseason is nearing its start and we’ve got you covered here at The Grueling Truth!
We’re gonna kick off our NFL Preview series with the Top 5 Things to Watch in the NFC East.
#5 – Will Tony Romo and Dez Bryant be able to make the Dallas offense elite?
It should come as no surprise that with Romo and Bryant out of the lineup (Romo missed 12 games and Bryant 7), the Cowboys’ offense was ranked 22nd in total yards and 31st in points scored.
If Dallas is going to do anything this year, they need both Romo and Bryant healthy and playing at a high level.
While Bryant was having some difficulty hanging onto passes at camp on Tuesday, it’s a pretty safe bet that he will be back among the top receivers in 2016, but that all hinges on Romo being back.
#4 – What will the Eagles look like under coach Doug Pederson?
When Pederson was hired, Eagles fans didn’t exactly rejoice. The biggest question mark surrounding the Pederson hiring is, “can he coach?”. It’s an unknown at this point.
Former San Diego Chargers offensive coordinator Frank Reich will be calling plays for the Eagles in 2016. He brings experience as the Chargers were the 9th ranked offense in 2015, but only went 4-12.
While many believe first round pick Carson Wentz will be the quarterback, that too is unknown at this point.
With Ryan Matthews on the NFI, it’ll be interesting to see how the ground attack will shake out by the end of preseason.
#3 – Will the Redskins repeat as NFC East champs?
Expectations are high as Kirk Cousins tries to lead his team back atop the NFC East.
They appear to have a high-powered offense with Jordan Reed, DeSean Jackson, and rookie receiver Josh Doctson. The question at running back is, can Matt Jones be counted on to be the primary back? He looks promising but also struggles with putting the ball on the ground.
If Cousins gets protection, expect Washington to be very much in the conversation to again reign over the rest of the NFC East.
Another big question is how the defense will be. They signed Josh Norman from Carolina but lost Junior Galette for the season after an Achilles tear. The defense will likely be the difference between a division title and not making the playoffs.
#2 – How will Dallas cope with the suspensions?
Middle Linebacker Renaldo McClain and defensive ends DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory will be missing several games to start the season. Lawrence will miss the first four games, but McClain and Gregory will be out the first 10 games.
While the secondary has depth, it’s very unclear how the front seven will cope with the loss of three of their best defenders.
#1 – Will the Giants make it back to the postseason?
The Giants are five seasons removed from 2011, when they won Super Bowl 46, but the problem is, they haven’t been back to the postseason since then.
The Sterling Shepard pick was a good one and should make the offense even more lethal as teams can’t just key Odell Beckham Jr.
The pick-ups of Olivier Vernon, Janoris Jenkins and Damon Harrison should improve the defense.
The biggest question mark is still the offensive line. It appears the Giants will go as far as Eli Manning can take them, but he needs to be upright.