07 Aug Fantasy Football Pre-Season Primer: NFC East
By: Mike Stromme – @stromme_93
I Started with the NFC South which you can read all about right here. This article is everything you need to know about the NFC East.
For the past three seasons, the Dallas Cowboys have been widely regarded as the best offensive line in football. That’s not anything new to anybody.
However, what’s new about this offensive line is the departure of Ronald Leary via free agency. He landed a spot in Denver.
His replacement LG is Jonathan Cooper. Cooper was drafted by the Cardinals with the 7th overall pick of the 2013 NFL Draft. He was then traded to New England as part of a deal that sent Chandler Jones to the desert.
Cooper has underwhelmed since being drafted in the top-ten four years ago. Both injuries and performance have hindered his career thus far
How will this vaunted offensive line respond to not only the addition of Cooper, but the loss of Leary. The chemistry of this offensive line will certainly be something to watch.
New York Giants:
In 2016, the Giants went out in free agency and spent a fortune solidifying their defensive unit. The moves paid dividends down the stretch for this team down the stretch, resulting in a Wild Card birth.
In 2017, the team went out and signed veteran WR Brandon Marshall and drafted TE Evan Engram in the first round in order to beef-up their red zone presence. The team scored on just 27.5% of possessions last season; only the
49ers, Bears, Browns and Rams were less efficient offensively.
One area that the Giants did not address over the offseason was their rushing attack. Last season, their offense averaged 3.5 YPC as a team (30th) and only the Rams, Lions and Vikings had fewer total rushing yards than the G-Men. They come into training camp with Paul Perkins, Shane Vereen, Orleans Darkwa and rookie Wayne Gallman.
Will one of these RBs show us something tangible this preseason? Is Paul Perkins the answer? Will Wayne Gallman play himself into the fold? Are Darkwa and Vereen more than just situational RBs? Let’s watch and find out.
Now, we may or may not get a real feel for how this turns out until Week 3 of the preseason. But I’m interested in how sophomore QB Carson Wentz gets along with the new members of his supporting cast, Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith.
Given the injury history of the two new additions, we probably won’t see them for more than a series or two early on. But by Week 3, we should get a good glimpse of how these two fit in to the Eagles’ offense in 2017.
Another player to watch is rookie RB Donnel Pumphrey. While at San Diego State, Pumphrey set the FBS career rushing record with 1,059-6,405-62 in four years with the Aztecs. While he’s a tad undersized (5′-9″, 176 lbs), I’m intrigued to see what he can do at the pro level. Look for him to flash his talents this pre-season.
Over the offseason, the Redskins lost receivers DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon to free agency, leaving the pecking order of receivers in complete flux.
On paper, it would seem as if third-year WR Jamison Crowder would move into “the Garcon role” in this offense, free agent signing Terrelle Pryor would replace DeSean Jackson as the deep threat and the teams first round pick in 2016, Josh Doctson, would assume the role vacated by Crowder due to his promotion up the ladder.
I’m interested to see how this situation plays out. Who will Cousins look to this pre-season? Pryor or Crowder? Pryor
is currently seeing more time on the field in the immediate sense, while Crowder nurses a sore hamstring. However, Crowder was targeted by Cousins 99 times a season ago despite the presence of Jackson and Garcon.
I guess only time will tell with this situation. Keep an eye on what this offense does in the passing game come Week 3 of the preseason.