NFC East Notebook, Oct. 22: Dallas' Tampa 1? Fred Davis on the block?

Jonathan Ferrey

News and notes from the Cowboys, Eagles and Redskins

The Cowboys, Redskins and New York Giants all won in Week 8, leaving the divisional standings in more flux than even before. After topping the Eagles, the Cowboys remain atop the NFC East but only by a hair. And the Eagles' 3-1 mark in the division is the best.

With a win against the Chicago Bears, Washington sits just one game back of the Eagles and really cannot be counted out of the division race just yet. And the stat you'll hear time and time again: Washington was 3-6 before they turned the season around to win the NFC East in 2012. They're certainly playing better coming off of their bye week.

Dallas Cowboys

Dallas hired Monte Kiffin to install a Tampa 2 defense and fix the holes left by behind by former defensive coordinator Rob Ryan. But Kiffin, the longtime proponent of the Tampa 2, has been straying away from that base D and using a number of the other looks -- including nickel formations -- to better fit the personnel.

The Cowboys used the Tampa 2 heavily in the red zone, but for the most part used their athletic defensive backs to put the Eagles in man-to-man situations. But what caused the change?

The Dallas Morning News suggests allowing Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos to dominate them offensively forced Kiffin's hand. Utilizing more Cover 1 n the last two games, the Cowboys have allowed a combined 19 points.

Philadelphia Eagles

Quarterback news in Philadelphia is at its highest since there was a competition in the preseason. Good quarterback news in Philadelphia, however, is at a premium.

With Michael Vick sidelined against Dallas, Nick Foles drew his second consecutive start, a week removed from a three-touchdown effort against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The momentum did not carry over, through.

Foles earned a -7.3 Pro Football Focus grade, the second-worst grade among quarterbacks in a game this season. Foles completed 11-of-29 passes for 80 yards before a concussion forced him out of the game.

In his place was the rookie, Matt Barkley, who did not fare much better. Barkley threw three interceptions en route to a -5.3 PFF grade.

In other quarterback news, Vick was voted the most disliked player in the NFL, according to a piece by Forbes. This of course is due to his previous involvement in a dog-fighting operation. Right now, I'm sure he's very well-liked by Eagles fans, who hope he can return to the starting lineup.

Washington Redskins

The Skins earned their second win of the season against the Jay Cutler-less Bears Sunday, and Hogs Haven has some signature takeaways from the game. Among them: winning late should inflate the confidence of this team, and given what happened last year when the team was 3-6, this season isn't over. Robert Griffin III said the win reminded him of 2012.

But lost in all the celebration is an off-the-field storyline to keep an eye on. Tight end Fred Davis is a possible trading chip as the NFL trade deadline approaches. With the rookie Jordan Reed emerging as a favorite target of RGIII, David could be dangled for draft picks or a position of need.

Follow Sam on Twitter @SamSpiegs


NFC East Standings

W L T PF PA
Dallas 4 3 0 200 155
Philadelphia 3 4 0 169 196
Washington 2 4 0 152 184
New York Giants 1 6 0 126 216

(updated 10.22.2013 at 3:25 AM EDT)



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