Will Eagles repeat as East champs?
LAS VEGAS, NV (The Spread) - Nick Foles and the Eagles remain favored to win the NFC East. Will Philly repeat or will Dallas, Washington or New York surprise?
I do not think that Philly will repeat as divisional winners in 2014. I feel that opposing defenses will begin to make necessary adjustment to slow down the Eagles offense that will be in its second year under HC Chip Kelly.
I’m not sold on Foles either and Mark Sanchez is not a guy that can lead the team if he were forced into action. The Eagles got rid of Desean Jackson in the off-season and now Jeremy Maclin is supposed to be the man, but I don't think Maclin can play a full 16 games without getting injured, not to mention that Riley Cooper is hurt currently as well. Opposing teams will focus on slowing down LeSean McCoy and while he is aiming for 2000+ yards this season, I am expecting MCCoy to finish with 1400-1500. I also have big concerns with the Eagles defense, which has given up 63 points after two preseason games.
Looking at the Eagles’ road schedule this season, I think it is possible that they go either 1-7 or 0-8 on the road. They do play Seattle at home and this will be a big game before finishing the season with three consecutive divisional games that include a back-to-back road set to finish off the season at Washington and at NY Giants. This is a tough schedule and I see the Eagles finishing the season at 9-7 or 8-8, and that will not win the division.
I like the Giants to bounce-back this season and to win the division. I know the preseason does not have major implications on what will happen in the regular season, but the Giants are now 3-0 after scoring 27 in the 4th quarter vs. Indy last Saturday.
In 2013, the Giants running backs were banged up as they were calling guys off the practice squad to run the ball. This season it looks like Rashad Jennings is prepared to tote the load while rookie Andre Williams will also be playing a role in the offense.
The Giants were falling behind early in games in 2013 as they were forced to play catch-up with the passing game and Eli Manning was throwing too many interceptions. There was tension between Hakeem Nicks and the team as there just wasn't any chemistry. The Giants didn’t re-sign Nicks, who was a distraction and got Odell Beckham in the draft and this is a deep WR core led by Victor Cruz and Reuben Randle.
Look for this offense to be put up 26-28 points a game in 2014 and I will call for the Giants to go undefeated (8-0) at home this season and I am confident that Manning will win 2-3 games on the road as winning on the road is a nothing new to him. Look for the Giants to win the NFC East in 2014.