NFC East Blueprint: Stealing Ideas From The Enemy

The fine folks over at SB Nation's Washington Redskins website, Hogs Haven, have put together a blueprint for how the Redskins -- the New York Giants' season-opening opponent -- can attack their NFC East opponents.

I thought I would piggy-back on that this morning, starting with what the folks at HH have to say about the Giants:

Biggest Weakness: The Giants were bitten by the injury bug more than any other team in the NFL this season. The two biggest hits were losing promising rookie defensive tackle Marvin Austin for the year, as well as last year's interception leader Terrell Thomas. Sage Rosenfels and Clint Sintim are also out for the season, while Ramses Barden and Adam Koets start the year on the PUP list.

Blueprint: Eli Manning has shown shades of continuing as a turnover machine this preseason, so it will be key for the Redskins front seven to get pressure on the QB and force some bad decision. The main point of attack should be starting LT Will Beatty who has only started six career games, Beatty should have a rough time matching up against Brian Orakpo and Stephen Bowen.

The Giants are still very solid on the defensive side of the ball, mainly anchored by their front seven. The one weakness may be their secondary where they have serious injuries to the aforementioned Thomas and rookie Prince Amukamara. Hopefully the Skins can step into a methodical passing game to help move down the field.

My take: There have been a bunch of injuries, but the only really devastating one is the injury to Thomas. As for the blueprint, trying to make Manning win games and waiting for the inevitable poor throw or bad decision has always been the plan against the Giants offense, that's no secret. With lots of new moving parts the Giants offense is a work in progress. I look for them to try and pound the rock with the running game. Let's see if Barry Cofield and Co. can stand up to that. The way to beat the Giants defense is to look for big plays in the passing game -- but can Washington's questionable offensive line give Rex Grossman a chance to do that.

Moving on to Hogs Haven's take on the Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys. I will summarize their points, no use them in their entirety.

Philadelphia Eagles

Biggest Weakness: The linebacking corps will be a source of problems for the Eagles in my mind, but I think their biggest weakness is themselves. Sure they have a lot of big names and have added a lot of talent, but it's going to take awhile for everyone to gel and develop continuity.

Blueprint: The key to beating the Eagles is when your team has the ball. If I was an offensive coordinator then I would try to make the Eagles and first year defensive coordinator Juan Castillo extremely uncomfortable.

On defense teams will attack the inexperienced week interior of the offensive line, which is anchored by rookies Danny Watkins and Jason Kelce.

My take: The key to beating the Eagles defense has nothing to do with exotic playbooks and all that silliness. The Eagles are a speed, pass-rushing defense built to go full-out after the quarterback on every play. The key is to take advantage of that -- and Philly's small, untested linebackers -- and jam the ball right down the Eagles throat. Run, run, run and run some more until the Eagles have to commit eight or nine guys to the run -- allowing opportunities for play-action down the field.

Dallas Cowboys

Biggest Weakness: The secondary is a bit of a mess, but if I'm a Cowboys fan then I'm not feeling good about my starting offensive line.

Blueprint: Attack the Cowboys weak secondary and rush the passer, any balanced team should be able to handle the Cowboys, it's that simple.

My take: I have to agree that the offensive line and the secondary are the most questionable areas with the Cowboys. I will believe all the 'Jason Garrett is great' hype when he actually accomplishes something.

Now, for my own thoughts on the Redskins.

They have Rex Grossman at quarterback. They don't exactly have a stellar offensive line. That means get after Grossman. On the flip side, handle Washington's edge rushers and you have a chance to make plays. Oh, and keep kick returner Brandon Banks under control (yes, you, rookie linebackers).

That's about all I have for now.

Your thoughts?

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