Dallas Cowboys 8-8
Keys to .500: The East is stacked, and the 'Boys have a pretty rough schedule. That, coupled with the loss of their biggest offensive playmaker spells trouble. Dallas has one of the deepest backfields in the league, but are now extremely think at WR after the departure of Terrell Owens. Roy Williams should step up and make an adequate replacement for the perrenial Pro Bowler, but after him, the most talented receivers on the field are the tight ends. Look for one of the most run heavy Cowboys teams in years as they try to get all three of their starting -calibur backs involved in the action. The defense isn't too spectacular either, lacking real playmakers after Ware and Ratliff, without even a solid #2 CB (Which they recently declared will be a rotation between youngsters Scandrick and Jenkins). The vanilla coaching wont do anything to help the situation either. And then there's always the December Curse...
Philadelphia Eagles 12-4
Keys to Vicktory: I don't think there is a more solid team in the division, maybe even the conference. Even if he is in decline, McNabb is one of the most complete QBs in the league; srtong-armed, accurate, smart, athletic, and quick. They addressed their messy backup QB issue by signing the controversial Michael Vick, who is rusty right now, but showing flashes of his old self. Once he gets up to speed, he'll probably be the best backup QB in the league. Their offensive line looks fantastic on papers after acquiring Peters and Andrews. Brent Celek has stepped up as a more than capable starting TE, their WRs are incredibly deep, they drafted a RB who may very well end up being Westbrook Jr. and the defense is just studly even after losing Brian Dawkins and Lito Shepperd. Not to mention they have a ton of Wildcat weapons now with Vick, DeSean, and Westbrook. If I weren't biased, the Eagles would by my pick to represent the NFC in the Superbowl.
New York Giants 8-8
Keys to .500: I want to rate the Giants lower, I really do, but they benefit from a painfully easy schedule. Of course, the biggest headlines out of the Giants' camp this year was Plaxico being stupid (I loved hearing Jim Brown rip into him) and Derrick Ward departing for Tampa. Bradshaw looks ready to take Ward's old role, but who will take Plaxico's? Right now, the starters are Domenik Hixon and Steve Smith. Unless the Giant's plan on having Hixon paralyze all the defenders around him, I can't see this passing game working with a mediocre QB and even more mediocre WRs. The defense will likely be as stout as last year, but they better prepare to be on the field a lot more. If the Giants want to do any better than .500, they'll have to lean heavily on Jacobs and the defense. And I mean heavily.
Washington Redskins 10-6
Keys to Success: If any team is willing to pay players, it's the Redskins. The dropped cash bombs on Albert Haynesworth and DeAngelo Hall, and added to these defensive beasts by drafting one of the top defensive prospects, Brian Orakpo. While the defense looks really good, they have some trouble on the other side of the ball. The offensive line is weak, Portis is in decline, and none of their receivers has stepped up to take the #2 job next to Santana Moss. The bright side? Jason Campbell is in a contract year, and he's playing for his career. He knows if he wants to be anything more than a backup, he has to step up and lead the team this year, meaning that no matter who the #2 WR, Campbell is going to do his best to put his WRs in a position to make plays. I expect him to take command of this offense and drive it like we've never seen him do before, and with the help of a solid defense, he may just be able to win them games, and the Skins could be a surprise playoff team.