The UFC heads to Salt Lake City for a huge undisputed welterweight title fight between number one ranked pound for pound fighter and world champion Kamaru Usman as he defends his title against number two ranked Leon Edwards. The 170 pound contest is a rematch from way back in December 2015, where Usman claimed a dominant decision win […]
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NFL Division Previews: NFC East Preview
1. Dallas Cowboys, Odds +125
The Dallas Cowboy shocked most football fans in 2014, with an impressive 12 win campaign and only their second playoff victory since 1997. While the loss of All-Pro running back Demarco Murray will surely hurt, the Cowboys have a deep backfield with Joseph Randle and Lance Dunbar, plus the addition of the injury prone yet talented Darren McFadden.
With Tony Romo, Dez Bryant and Jason Witten, the Cowboys have one of the most balanced offenses in the league. Behind one of the best offensive lines in the leagues, the Cowboys’ have one of the more dangerous offences in not just the NFC East, but the entire NFL.
While the Cowboys’ defense isn’t considered elite, veterans such as cornerback Orlando Scandrick and linebackers Sean Lee and Rolando McClain (who is currently suspended 4 games to start 2015), and the signing of the controversial but highly talented Greg Hardy provide just enough skill and speed to keep the Cowboys competitive.
2. New York Giants, Odds +300
If history and patterns are any indicator of success, the New York Giant could be prime for another successful season. In 2007 and 2011, the New Giants faced the AFC East during the regular season, en route to winning the franchises last two Super Bowls. Throughout Eli Manning’s career, he has posted a very impressive mark of 9-1 (including 2-0 in the Super Bowl) against the AFC East.
With the emergence of Odell Beckham Jr., return of Pro Bowl wide receiver Victor Cruz and signing of receiving specialist running back Shane Vereen, Eli Manning has a strong group of weapons to work with. As Manning impressed in the second half last season, as he became more comfortable in Bob McAdoo’s offensive system, the Giants’ offense will be able to compensate for a lackluster defense. While the team has some good players including defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul, linebacker Jon Beason and cornerbacks Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, the middle of the defensive line and the backend of the secondary will hurt the Giants in 2015.
3. Philadelphia Eagles, Odds +180
Since being hired by the Eagles in 2013, Chip Kelly has posted an impressive record of 20-12 and the Eagles captured the NFC East division crown in 2013. Kelly has implemented his offensive system quite well in Philly, and found success with different starting QBs each season.
The Eagles enter week one with a new starting quarterback in Sam Bradford. The former first overall pick has generally been considered a disappointment, but part of that should be blamed on the porous offenses the Rams’ general management has surrounded him with as well as a history of injuries. If Bradford can remain healthy -- a large uncertainty, considering he has missed 31 games over his 5 year career, including the entire 2014 season – he should produce his best season so far. The Eagles retained the services of QB Mark Sanchez, another first round pick who has underperformed so far in his career.
4. Washington Redskins, Odds +1400
Robert Griffin III enters his fourth year as a pro, but has struggled the previous two seasons since being named Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2012. Even after signing wide receiver Desean Jackson, the Redskins offense flattered in 2014 and featured three different starting quarterbacks, none of whom were very impressive.
The defense for the Redskins has been upgraded since 2014. The signing of Terrance Knighton, a big defense tackle and Chris Culliver, a physical cornerback, will help improve a unit that struggled with discipline in 2014. Still the lack of consistency at QB will remain the team’s downfall in 2015, in a competitive division with 3 quality offenses.
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