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NFC East Fast forward: Imagining Week 9 success for each team in the division

Who will be the happiest: Redskins, Cowboys or Eagles?

The next two weeks are critical to the Redskins, with division games against the Cowboys and the Giants. With only a half-game separating the top three teams in the division, almost anything can happen.

Two wins by the Redskins would be great for Washington, while two losses would be damned near disastrous.

The Cowboys and Eagles fans are every bit as focused on the next two weeks as we Redskins fans. The Giants fans, meanwhile, are reading headlines that focus on whether or not OBJ drinks water, and whether or not Mara thinks OBJ should just shut up; they are dreaming of some bright future day when they have a starting NFL quarterback on the roster again.

I thought I’d take a moment to look at what “ideal” success would look like over the next two weeks from the point of view of each of these four NFC East fan bases.

Eagles fans

Atlanta Falcons v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

The World Champion Eagles have a bye in Week 9, and their fans would love to be in first place in the division when they get there.

It goes without saying that the Eagles’ dream scenario depends on them winning both games, this week at home against the Panthers, and Week 8 in London against the Jaguars.

It’s a little debatable whether they would prefer to see the Redskins or the Cowboys come out on top this week, but I’m going to assume that they’ll be rooting for the Redskins to put a loss on Dallas ahead of the Cowboys’ bye week.

In a sense, it doesn’t matter; if everything else falls in place for Philly, a Cowboys win simply sees the Redskins and Cowboys swapping records going into Week 9.

Eagles fans will clearly be looking for the Giants to prevail in Week 8 against the Redskins following a G-men loss this week against the Falcons.

If all that comes true, the Eagles players and fans would be happy holding a half-game lead on either the Redskins or the Cowboys going into the bye week:

  • Eagles 5-3, 1-0
  • Redskins 4-3, 1-1
  • Cowboys 3-4, 1-1
  • Giants 2-6, 1-2

Cowboys fans

Kansas City Chiefs v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The Cowboys have spent the season alternating losses and wins, and currently sit at 3-3. Their dream scenario for the next two weeks involves breaking that pattern with a win against the Redskins at FedEx on Sunday to get them a game above .500, followed by a Week 8 bye.

In the remaining 4 games involving their NFC East rivals this week and next, Dallas fans will be looking for only one NFC East team to win: Giants over the ‘Skins in Week 8.

If all that comes true, the Cowboys would leap into a one-game lead in the division going into Week 9:

  • Cowboys 4-3, 2-0
  • Redskins 3-4, 0-2
  • Eagles 3-5, 1-0
  • Giants 2-6, 1-2

Redskins fans

Washington Redskins v Arizona Cardinals Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

I keep hearing how the Eagles are “hitting their stride” or finally “pulling it all together”. This doesn’t really make any sense to me. Looking back at the past three games, the Eagles lost two straight (Titans and Vikings) before picking up a cheap win against the Giants on Thursday night.

The Eagles, far from ‘hitting their stride’, are 3-3 and limping. They lose the next two (Panthers and Jags), and head into the bye week licking their wounds, having lost 4 out of 5.

The Redskins can send the Cowboys off to their Week 8 bye feeling miserable by beating Dallas on a nationally televised CBS matchup in the late afternoon on Sunday. Blogging the Boys should go into a total two-week meltdown when their team loses to the Redskins in front of a nationwide audience.

Surprisingly, Redskins fans will be happy to see the Giants win this week’s game in Atlanta. First of all, it gives Atlanta another NFC loss, to keep them out of a wildcard chase in the case of a late-season rally. Secondly, a win gets the Giants a step away from the top pick in the 2019 draft. Finally, it gets a win for the NFC East division, which will need every win it can get to avoid being a laughingstock with the records that result from this scenario.

Of course, the Redskins will go into New Jersey and come away with the win in Week 8.

The Redskins will go into Week 9 with a commanding 2-game lead in the division, and an untarnished division record:

  • Redskins 5-2, 2-0
  • Cowboys 3-4, 1-1
  • Eagles 3-5, 1-0
  • Giants 2-6, 0-3

Giants fans

Jacksonville Jaguars v New York Giants Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images

The best record the Giants can achieve by Week 9 is 3-5, and they are already 0-2 in the division; no matter what happens, they can’t get into first place by the halfway point of the season.

It’s hard to imagine any realistic scenario that sees the Giants reaching the playoffs this season, so the fans might as well root for the first overall draft pick, which would give Dave Gettleman a bit of a “do over” on drafting Eli’s replacement. Giants fans should spend the next several weeks in a weekly torment, torn between the natural desire to win, and the opportunity to have the top pick in the draft.

Go ahead Giants fans, root for the loss. You don’t have to look too deep inside to know that Eli’s done and this season is lost.

Think about how you’ll be able to get revenge in 2019 with Saquon Barkley and a talented new rookie quarterback.

Your heart’s just not really in it any more.


Which team will be in first place in the NFC East when Week 8 has come to an end?

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  • 12%
    (33 votes)
  • 12%
    (34 votes)
  • 75%
    (202 votes)
269 votes total Vote Now


How many wins will the Giants have at the end of Week 8?

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  • 39%
    (96 votes)
  • 48%
    (119 votes)
  • 12%
    (31 votes)
246 votes total Vote Now