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In this start of the season, we cannot just say that NFC EAST is boring, or that there is a team that absolutely domains. In this week 3 we saw a lot of cards shuffle: teams who started to have some ambition has lost some of its certainties, against those who were called to try to pull out of the quicksand, did it with force and now they nurture their hopes once again.
Thursday at MetLife Stadium in New York (ok that’s not exactly NY) the more anticipated game was between the Washington Redskins and New York Giants. A delicate game in which the Giants were called to victory to start giving meaning to their season, while the Redskins were looking for confirmation after a solid home win against the Rams. The game wasn’t very tight and the Giants easily disposed of the Redskins, the result was never in doubt and, if on one hand the Giants find faith and confidence for this success, the ghosts of a copycat season as the last for Redskins, are back. The Giants won thanks to a superb work of the defense that Steve Spagnulo is taking back to a high level, the dreaded running game in Washington was canceled, while Cousins and his receivers were controlled quite easily. Great showing by Manning and his WR’s, while the running game continues to be very incisive. Watching at the Redskins is very little that we can save from this trip. Washington arrived in the Big Apple with some certainties, toying with the crazy idea to shock the NFC EAST, they had a reality check and their only conviction is that they have still much work to do . Bad on every offensive aspect, the running backs Morris and Jones collected a paltry 57 total Yds, Cousins (2 INT) continues to show he isn’t the franchise QB that the team hopes, while the secondary suffered Beckham and Randle a lot. The only positive is that the OL continues to work very well in pass protection, allowing Cousins time to make his reads. Waiting for DeSean Jackson…
Sunday, Chip Kelly’s Philadelphia Eagles faced the New York Jets. Phila was coming from a difficult week, after the home loss to the Cowboys and an 0-2 record, while the Jets arrived at the challenge after two strong wins and, like Washington, with the ambition to aim high. Here too, the result surprised many as the Eagles won by a score of 24-17, after leading 24-0. Can we talk of an Eagles resurrection ? Not so fast. The win came, but it’s a hard one, certainly there are good news for Kelly and the fan base, but the Eagles still showed some problems far to be solved. As last season, once again are the special teams (thanks to an outstanding Sproles) and the defense to give the victory to Phila, while on Offense still Bradford looked tentative, the running game seems to start to settle down, with a good Ryan Mathews who gained 108 Yds. Good news comes from a defense riddled with backups, that played big generating 4 turnovers, the best of the bunch was Jordan Hicks (the one who broke Romo) with nine tackles and one interception, leading his defense to an authoritarian performance.
Sunday the NFC EAST is in for another big day. The New York Giants will travel to face the Buffalo Bills. Buffalo had a good victory against divisional rivals Miami Dolphins, while for the Giants, Victor Cruz will come back on the field forming one of the most amazing duo in the NFL with Odell Beckham. Also Sunday a divisional challenge in the capital city between the Washington Redskins and Philadelphia Eagles, both teams have a 1-2 record to show, both want to win in order to continue to dream about the playoffs, the Redskins will be without DeAngelo Hall (3/4 weeks), Phila loses another piece of his OL: guard Andrew Gardner will be forced to miss the rest of the season because of a foot injury. Who will prevail ?