Tuesday, April 22, 2014

NFC East Draft Preview

With two weeks until the NFL Draft, I'm going through every team and taking a look at what to expect on Draft Day, including some recommended blogs to read and folks to follow on Twitter.

2013 Record: 10-6
NFC East Champion, Lost to New Orleans in Wild Card Round

Draft Picks: 22, 54, 86, 122, 162, 237

Recommended Blogs/Twitter: Inside the Iggles, @InsideTheIggles@MattThorntonNFL, @VoiceofthePhan

Draft Preview: The Eagles were big players on both ends of the Free Agency market, losing 6 players from their division champion squad and bringing in replacements off the market. Aside from WR, where the Eagles cut DeSean Jackson and re-signed Riley Cooper and Jeremy Maclin (who is coming off an ACL injury), Philadelphia filled most of their holes with veterans. The Eagles biggest hole is in the secondary where they ranked dead last in the league in pass defense. They were able to land two of the bigger names on the free agent market in FS Malcolm Jenkins and CB Nolan Carroll. Holes remain at inside linebacker and along the defensive line as the Eagles continue to adapt to the 3-4 alignment.

2013 Record: 8-8

Draft Picks: 16, 47, 78, 119, 158, 229, 231, 238, (248), (251), (254)

Recommended Blogs/Twitter: Blogging The Boys, @BloggingTheBoys@MattThorntonNFL

Draft Preview: The Cowboys enter the draft with the second most selections of any team (11) but over half of their picks are in the 7th round. For a team that has been known to wheel and deal on draft day, that doesn't give them much ammunition to use to move up in the early rounds. The Cowboys need some serious help on defense where they cut their best player (DeMarcus Ware) for cap reasons after ranking in the bottom 5 in the league against both the run and the pass last year. The Cowboys need a pass rusher to replace Ware, and with their move to a 4-3 will need to find a hand-down defensive end. They also need help at both outside linebacker position, provided Sean Lee can return from injury and anchor the middle. Inside linebacker is the only place down the middle where the Cowboys are strong and need help both at defensive tackle and safety.

2013 Record: 7-9

Draft Picks: 12, 43, 74, 113, 152, (174), 187

Recommended Blogs/Twitter: @BigBlueBloggers

Draft Preview: If you start to notice a theme, it's because the NFC East was really really bad on the defensive side of the ball last year. Like the other teams in their division, the Giants also need help on defense, particularly at defensive tackle, weakside linebacker and safety. On offense, the Giants were 29th in the league in rushing last year and need help along the offensive line (specifically at guard and tackle) after signing RB Rashad Jennings and Center JD Walton.

2013 Record:3-13

Draft Picks: 34, 66, 102, 142, 178, 217

Recommended Blogs/Twitter: Hogs Haven, @HogsHaven, @SkinsHogHeaven

Draft Preview: I'm not sure what is a bigger debate in Washington - RGIII or the Redskins name. Either way, Washington is a team with holes to fill and not a lot of picks to do it with because St Louis holds their first round pick after the RGIII trade. As is typical, the Redskins were active in free agency, totally rebuilding the interior of their defense with DTs Jason Hatcher and Chris Baker, ILBs Perry Riley and Darryl Sharpton, and safeties Brandon Merriweather and Ryan Clark. On offense, the Redskins made a splash by signing DeSean Jackson after he was cut by division rival Philadelphia. The Redskins biggest needs will now be along the offensive line as they need to find some way to protect RGIII and keep him on the field.

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