NFC East Review: How the division stacks up after the NFL Draft

NFL: SEP 20 Giants at Bears
CHICAGO, IL – SEPTEMBER 20: New York Giants cornerback James Bradberry (24) in action during a game between the Chicago Bears and the New York Giants on September 20, 2020 at Soldier Field in Chicago, IL. (Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire)

It’s pretty clear that most of the Philadelphia Eagles fanbase is riding high after an excellent draft, and free agency period. While the roster still has some very specific needs, the franchise is significantly better than they were from last season.

The same cannot be said for the rest of the Eagles’ NFC East rivals. A week after the draft, most teams have begun to round out their full roster. Let’s take a look at how the NFC East has fared over the last week.

Washington Commanders

Draft Grade Per PFF: C+

Forget the team traded for Carson Wentz. Forget the team did very little to improve the overall roster and instead signed free agent depth pieces along the OL. Even forget they said goodbye to Landon Collins. This team doesn’t look like a massive threat on paper.

The fact that Washington’s best overall selection was based on value with the Sam Howell selection in round five tells you all you need to know. The Commanders may have gotten Wentz a nice speed threat in Jahan Dotson, and made sure the offense wouldn’t crumble with injuries to their OL again, but the Washington draft was filled with question marks.

A defensive lineman in round two? No true secondary or LB help?

This team will go as far as Carson Wentz takes them. And that’s a good thing for pretty much every other team in the NFC East.

My Grade: C+

New York Giants

Draft Grade per PFF: B-

I was a tad surprised when I saw PFF’s grade for the Giants. Few could objectively argue that they had one of the best Day One’s in team history with the selections of Evan Neal and Kayvon Thibodeaux.

But the draft goes two more days. And both days were head-scratchers for the G-Men. The reach for Wan’Dale Robinson was a surprise considering the team still has last year’s first-round pick, Kadarius Toney, still on the roster. And while they did double up on the interior offensive line, there are still massive questions that surround the position group. Andrew Thomas and Neal are excellent tackles and should complement each other well. But the guards and centers on the team are still lacking when you consider the overall interior talent that the Cowboys, Eagles, and Commanders have.

Then there is the little nugget that the Giants are expecting to release their #1 corner in James Bradberry. Bradberry carried a massive cap cost so cutting him isn’t truly a surprise, however the fact that they don’t really have another top option is a big deal with each team in the East getting better weapons (well, at least most of them).

The miss on a corner and questionable second and third days bring the grade down, but not by much after a strong Day One.

My Grade: B+

Dallas Cowboys

Draft Grade per PFF: B+

This was a stunner to me. The Cowboys reached on their first-round pick, Tyler Smith who was one of the most penalized players in college football last year. He’d fit right in with the team that led the league in offensive line penalties though!

They also found a replacement for Randy Gregory in round two, with basically the same exact player in Sam Williams. Williams has solid college production but has serious off-the-field issues.

A true Dallas Cowboy!

The Cowboys had arguably the best Day three draft of anyone in the division though. Matt Waletzko and Damone Clark were nice value selections albeit the fact they need to sit a little. Of course, the main storyline was the fact that in a draft full of top receiving prospects, the team settled on Jalen Tolbert in round three. Tolbert will have to replace the production of both Amari Cooper and Cedrick Wilson. The team is betting on their young defensive players to get better, Dak to carry the offense against a first-place schedule.

Good Luck.

My Grade: C+

Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire