NFL Handicapping: The NFC East
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NFL Handicapping Insight
The NFC East seemingly goes right down to the wire every season in its search for a champion, and last year was no different, with the Cowboys edging out the Eagles by just one win to reclaim the division title. This season should bring more of the same in one of the most competitive divisions in football. Dallas won the division in two of the last three years, and the Eagles won the Super Bowl just two seasons ago.
2019 NFC East Predictions: Dallas Cowboys
Cowboys Odds to Win 2019 Super Bowl: +2500
Cowboys Odds to Win 2019 NFC Conference: +900
Cowboys Odds to Win 2019 NFC East Division: +200
The Cowboys’ offense took a major step forward following a mid-season trade with the Raiders that brought wide receiver Amari Cooper to Dallas. That brought another dimension to the Cowboys’ offense, which they hope carries into this season under new play-caller Kellen Moore, though they’ll of course need to sort things out with Ezekiel Elliott for that to happen.
The defense has actually been a strong point for the team in recent years, which lends itself well to the team’s ball control offense. Defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, and linebackers Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch are all Pro Bowl-caliber players.
2019 NFC East Predictions: Philadelphia Eagles
Eagles Odds to Win 2019 Super Bowl: +1000
Eagles Odds to Win 2019 NFC Conference: +500
Eagles Odds to Win 2019 NFC East Division: -150
The Eagles finally let go of Nick Foles and went all-in on Carson Wentz, giving him a lucrative contract extension. There’s plenty of talent around Wentz, so the key for him this year will be staying healthy and carrying momentum into the postseason.
The team is also very talented on defense, so that safety net of Foles being gone just puts more pressure on Wentz to stay healthy and see if he can be the guy to carry the team to the promised land in the postseason.
2019 NFC East Predictions: New York Giants
Giants Odds to Win 2019 Super Bowl: +12500
Giants Odds to Win 2019 NFC Conference: +6000
Giants Odds to Win 2019 NFC East Division: +1800
2018 was a forgettable season for the Giants, and things should only get worse before they get beter. The team traded away Odell Beckham Jr. and Olivier Vernon, while also letting Landon Collins walk. That’s three Pro Bowl-caliber players gone with no replacements stepping in.
Saquon Barkley proved he can be the type of dynamic player at the next level that the Giants believed he could be when they selected him. They likely won’t get the same production out of this year’s first-round selection, as Daniel Jones figures to carry a clipboard until 2020, so this year will be another write-off in New York.
2019 NFC East Predictions: Washington Redskins
Redskins Odds to Win 2019 Super Bowl: +15000
Redskins Odds to Win 2019 NFC Conference: +6500
Redskins Odds to Win 2019 NFC East Division: +800
Washington is another team that spent a first round pick on a quarterback, adding Dwayne Haskins out of Ohio State, though he should get the chance to start right away if he can beat out Case Keenum. The team had a second pick in the first round, which it spent on Montez Sweat, who’ll join Collins as new members of what should be an improved defense.
Running back Derrius Guice will also make his debut. He should add another layer to the team’s offense as an explosive option out of the backfield. While some of that may sound good, Jay Gruden is on the hot seat and it’s tough to picture him lasting through to 2020.
Cappers Picks 2019 NFC East Predictions
The Cowboys took down the division a year ago, but the Eagles were the most talent group a year ago, and will be again. Not surprisingly, futures odds reflect the lofty expectations attached to the Eagles, so there’s little value to be found there, and with the injury concerns around Wentz, it’s hard to trust backing them.
In the event Wentz does get hurt again, the Cowboys should be able to cruise to at least a division title, so given that major question mark in Philadelphia, there’s certainly value to be found in backing the Cowboys to repeat as division champs – if they can get Elliott inside the building some time soon.
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