With the NFL season quickly approaching, there are headlines across the NFC East. Let’s take a look at what’s going on with all of the New York Giants division rivals this offseason in this week’s Around the NFC East.
Revamped receiving corps showing potential
The Washington Redskins lost both DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon this offseason in free agency. Although they had those losses, the Redskins added former Browns WR Terrell Pryor on a one-year deal. The team also gets their 2016 first-round pick Josh Doctson back after missing much of the season with an injury. This receiving group is showing potential in training camp, according to Mike Jones of the Washington Post.
Versatility: Because of their size, both Pryor and Doctson will be used to move the chains. But both also boast good speed and can make plays downfield. Plus, Crowder is as reliable as they come, and his crisp route-running ability makes him one of the better slot receivers in the NFL. Coaches plan to move him all over the place. And Crowder will come through again and again. He should top last year’s production (67 catches, 847 yards and seven touchdowns). Ryan Grant isn’t a fan favorite, but his coaches love him. He could play any of the three receiver positions and also is a willing contributor in the run-blocking and special teams departments.
Depth: Top to bottom, this might be one of the better groups the Redskins have fielded in some time. Crowder, Pryor and Doctson lead the pack, and the second-tier players (Grant, Quick and Harris) are all serviceable. Young hopefuls such as Davis, Matt Hazel, Zach Pascal, James Quick and Lavern Jacobs all have made some tough catches and bring a little something different.
Big-play ability: Pryor showed what he’s capable of Tuesday, as he made a one-handed grab in the back corner of the end zone look easy. Doctson has displayed great leaping ability and “wow factor” catches. He also is a crafty route-runner and has an ability to create uncertainty in the minds of defenders and then take advantage of it. This duo should produce some fireworks this season.
Jordan Reed return up in the air
“We’ll wait until he’s 100 percent and hopefully it will be for the first game, obviously,” Gruden said. “It could be next week. We don’t know yet.”
Reed was placed on the physically unable to perform list before training camp started because of a sprained big toe. He also had sprained an ankle. On the first day of camp, Gruden had said the team would re-evaluate him this week, which was part of the reason for his doctor’s visit.
Cowboys potential Hall of Famers
Hall of Fame
Jason Witten, Tight End
Jason Witten is as much of a first ballot Hall of Fame lock as Peyton Manning. At the end of this season, Witten will own nearly every meaningful Dallas Cowboys receiving record (yards, completions, touchdowns) and he is already regarded as the best (or second best) tight end of his generation. His consistency, leadership and pure talent has helped many of his quarterbacks become stars in the National Football League. Jason Witten is the next Hall of Famer for the Dallas Cowboys, unless former Cowboys, DeMarcus Ware, gets the call first!
Tyron Smith, Tackle
Tyron Smith entered the National Football League in 2011 as a 20-year-old tackle out of USC. In his six years with the Cowboys, he has been to four straight Pro Bowls and has a pair of First-Team All-Pro and a pair of Second-Team All-Pro awards to his name. He is arguably the best left tackle in the league on the best offensive line in the NFL. Barring a series of injuries or unforeseen setbacks, look for Tyron Smith to head to Canton at the conclusion of his career.
Dez Bryant, Wide Receiver
Dez Bryant has been flying under the radar the last few years because of injuries and a recent slew of exceptionally productive receivers in Atlanta, New York and Pittsburgh. That being said, his statistics over the first seven years of his career have been outstanding as he has amassed over 6,600 yards and 67 touchdowns already. If he is able to replicate these numbers for the second half of his careers, there have been very few players in league history to achieve 11,000 yards and over 100 touchdowns. These numbers would make Dez a lock for the Hall of Fame.
Travis Frederick, Center
Travis Frederick entered the NFL in 2013 and he has already been to three Pro Bowls, and has been named to the First-Team All-Pro once, and the Second-Team All-Pro twice. He is widely regarded as the best center in the NFL and he still has the majority of his career ahead of him. Unlike guard and tackle which are well-represented in Canton, there are very few standout centers in the Hall of Fame.
Zack Martin, Guard
Zack Martin’s accomplishments speak for themselves as he has amassed three Pro Bowl appearances, two First-Team All Pro nods and one Second-Team All Pro nod in his three seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. He is considered one of the best guards in the NFL and given the strength of his offensive line as well as the firepower along the offensive, the Dallas Cowboys will always be in the mix for having one of the most productive offenses in the league. If Martin is able to continue his early success, look for him to join his teammates Tyron Smith and Travis Frederick in the Hall of Fame.
Alshon Jeffery to be absent from first preseason game
Alshon Jeffery is unlikely to suit up for the Eagles’ first preseason game against the Green Bay Packers next week. The team is expected to take a cautious approach while Jeffery recovers from what’s been described as a “minor” shoulder injury, sources tell BGN Radio’s John Barchard. Sources also indicate Jeffery wants to play but the Eagles don’t want to risk anything at this point.
Jeffery first got banged up during Eagles training camp practice last Saturday, July 30. He missed some practice reps before later returning to team drills. Jeffery then practiced on Sunday. He hasn’t returned to action since the Eagles had an off day on Monday, however.
WHY IT MAKES SENSE: Was Revis bad last year for the Jets? Yes. The reality is, however, he was not as bad as the Eagles' cornerbacks. Revis gave up three touchdowns last season, less than half of the seven that the Eagles' No. 1 cornerback Leodis McKelvin gave up in 2016.
It is fair to say that Revis' best days are likely behind him, but he still played at a level last season that was higher than any of the Eagles' cornerbacks.
Also, Revis could be a much-needed veteran presence to the Eagles' cornerback room, and having him around young players like Sidney Jones, Rasul Douglas and Mills could only help.