Editor's note: Michael Plundo is an incoming junior at Texas Tech studying Sports Management and spending his second semester as an intern at 600 ESPN El Paso. He is an aspiring sports journalist. Throughout the coming weeks, Michael will be diving into each NFL division to give his outlook on each team, with the ceiling and floor for each franchise. In his third edition of the series, Michael previews the NFC East below. 

Read NFC West Predictions

Read NFC North Predictions 

By Michael Plundo


The NFC East promises intense drama this season! The Eagles look to bounce back after a disappointing finish last season. The Cowboys are hungry to prove themselves with Dak Prescott. Daniel Jones will be back for the Giants and will want to show his 2022-23 season was not a fluke. Finally, the Commanders enter with a new regime. Every game in this division will be a good one. 

NFC Wild Card Playoffs - Green Bay Packers v Dallas Cowboys
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Dallas Cowboys 

- Record: 12-5 (2023)                                         - Overall finish: Lost in Wild Card 

- Division placement: 1st                                   - Head Coach: Mike McCarthy (5th season) 

- Offense rank: 371.6 yds/G (5/32)                    - Defense rank: 299.7 yds/G allowed (5/32) 

Last year’s overview:  

After an impressive 2023-24 season that saw the Cowboys win the NFC East, especially by quarterback Dak Prescott who led the league in passing touchdowns, wide receiver Ceedee Lamb was named a first-team All-Pro enjoying a career season. The defense was as strong as ever; despite losing cornerback Trevon Diggs to a midseason injury, star linebacker Micah Parsons led the way, and cornerback Daron Bland broke out, setting the NFL single-season record for most interceptions returned for a touchdown with five. However, like recent years Dallas failed to break the curse of appearing in an NFC championship game as the team had a disappointing exit in the wild card round losing to Green Bay. Many wondered if Dallas would undergo significant changes in the 2024 offseason. 

New Additions: 

Dallas said goodbye to veterans Leighton Vander-Esch to retirement, Michael Gallup to Las Vegas, ex-defensive coordinator Dan Quinn left for a head coaching job with Washington and poached two cowboys in Dante Fowler and Dorrance Armstrong. Longtime tackle Tyron Smith left for the Jets, center Tyler Biadasz went to Washington, and running back Tony Pollard inked a three-year deal with Tennessee.

The Cowboys made some notable moves, but nothing that can be seen as a needle-mover. Veteran linebacker Eric Kendricks signed a one-year contract with Dallas who will likely replace Vander-Esch. A familiar face was brought back on the offensive side, running back Ezekiel Elliott is back on a one-year deal after departing last offseason to New England. To replace Quinn, ex-Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer was hired and will lead the defense for the upcoming season.

Fast forward to the draft, McCarthy and owner Jerry Jones had a lot of work to do. After a trade back in the first down with Detroit, the Cowboys selected tackle Tyler Guyton out of Oklahoma who will replace Tyron Smith. Cowboys continued to focus on adding to the trenches by picking up defensive end Marshawn Kneeland from Western Michigan in the 2nd round and in the 3rd round the team drafted offensive lineman Cooper Beebe out of Kansas State who will compete for the starting center role.

Burning Questions for DAL:

Questionable is one word that can be used to describe the Dallas Cowboys 2024 offseason. The Cowboys got worse on paper and with star players' futures in question and tension rising within the organization, it could be a long season ahead for Dallas.

Is this Dak Prescott’s last season in a Cowboys uniform?

Is the Cowboys' Super Bowl window closing?

Prescott is entering the final year of his contract and many wonder if it will be his last season with the team. He is coming off a great season, a finalist for NFL MVP, and finished second in voting behind Lamar Jackson. However, the playoffs came around and Dallas got stunned at home losing 48-32 to the Packers where Dak had two crucial interceptions in the first half, one being returned for a touchdown.

Not only is Dak heading into the final year of his contract, but key contributors like Ceedee Lamb and Micah Parsons are also due for extensions. There have already been reports coming out of Dallas that Lamb will request a trade if both parties can not agree to a contract, something to monitor going forward. Lamb is only 25, coming off a career-best season racking up over 1,700 yards receiving and catching 12 touchdowns.

Many expect the Cowboys to take a step back this season but with the talent of Prescott, Lamb, Parsons, and Trevon Diggs coming back from injury paired with Daron Bland, this team will be in playoff contention. If Prescott and Mike McCarthy can’t get this team over the hump, an era could be coming to an end.

Ceiling/Floor:

Ceiling: 11-6

Floor: 8-9

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Philadelphia Eagles

- Record: 11-6 (2023)                                         - Overall finish: Lost in Wild Card 

- Division placement: 2nd                                  - Head Coach: Nick Sirianni (4th season) 

- Offense rank: 354.4 yds/G (8/32)                    - Defense rank: 356.1 yds/G allowed (26/32) 

Last year’s overview:

Coming off a Super Bowl appearance, expectations were high for the birds heading into 2023. The Eagles got off to a 10-1 start but collapsed to end the year finishing 1-5 resulting in a 11-6 record. The playoffs did not get any better as they lost 32-9 to Baker Mayfield and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The late-season struggles cost the Eagles not only the division title but also the top seed in the NFC, no denying there is talent on this roster but the organization was not happy with this finish and changes were coming for Philly in the offseason.

New Additions:

General Manager Howie Roseman was active in free agency making a plethora of moves. For the defense,  he re-signed cornerback Avonte Maddox on a team-friendly deal after the cornerback was slated to make just under $7 million. Maddox has had trouble staying healthy the last couple of seasons as he missed eight games in 2022 and only played in four games last season. A familiar face was brought back to help a catastrophic secondary, safety Chauncey Gardner-Johnson signed a three-year deal worth up to $33 million, back in 2022 he had six interceptions which was tied for first and Howie made some solid draft picks in Quniyon Mitchell and Cooper Dejean to help improve the secondary.

Staying on the defense, the Eagles signed linebacker Devin White to a one-year $7.5 million deal from Tampa. Linebacker being a weak spot for the team, White comes with a Super Bowl to his resume and is looking to have a bounce-back season after dealing with foot and groin injuries in 2023. In the trenches, Fletcher Cox announced his retirement but the Eagles made a splash by signing defensive end Bryce Huff to a three-year contract worth up to $51 million, coming off his best season with the Jets where he had 10 sacks along with 21 quarterback hits, he will be joining forces with defensive tackle Jalen Carter who is on the rise and longtime veteran Brandon Graham who re-signed. The Eagles suffered a major loss after trading Haason Reddick to the Jets, Reddick had over 20 sacks in his two seasons with Philly.

Switching to the offense, they lost center six-time first-team All-Pro Jason Kelce to retirement however, the Eagles came away winners from the Saquon Barkley sweepstakes. Barkley and the Eagles reached an agreement on a three-year contract that could be worth up to $46.75 million with $26 million guaranteed. Barley has racked up over 7,300 scrimmage yards over his six years in the league and he will be joining an offense that features star receivers A.J. Brown and Devonta Smith, tight end Dallas Goedert and quarterback Jalen Hurts leading the way. The Eagles are taking a risk as spending big money on the running back position does not always work out, given the longevity running backs have and Saquon comes with a lengthy injury history.

Burning Questions for PHI:

Will losing Kelce and Cox affect the Eagles?

Can the team bounce back after a disappointing end to the 2023-24 season?

Two big questions surround this Philadelphia Eagles team this upcoming season. Losing Jason Kelce and Fletcher Cox hurt big-time because they had been with the team for over a combined 20 years and not having that leadership around may have an effect. 

The Eagles are not even three years removed from a Super Bowl appearance, as they played in the big game with the Chiefs but a costly pass interference call ended up being the dagger to eventually fall to Patrick Mahomes and company. This Eagles roster is built for a playoff run. Hurts, who is coming off a down season, is looking to rebound and prove why he is still one of the best quarterbacks in the league. With the supporting cast of Brown, Smith, Goedert, and now Barkley highlighting the backfield, a bounce-back season could be in store for Jalen and the Eagles offensive unit.

Despite losing Kelce, the Eagles still have a top offensive line unit featuring Jordan Mailata and Lane Johnson at left and right tackle, and Landon Dickerson at left guard, having those in the fold will take pressure off Cam Jurgens who will replace Kelce and right guard Tyler Steen.

The defense has got talent all over the board.

Jalen Carter and Jordan Davis up front, along with Bryce Huff and Josh Sweat coming off the edge. Devin White paired with Zack Baun and Nakobe Dean round out the linebacker position, and Darius Slay and Gardner-Johnson man the secondary. Many wonder if Slay has lost a step with age. James Bradberry suffered regression last season, so this could be a prime opportunity for rookies Cooper Dejean and Quinyon Mitchell to make a name for themselves.

Philly will no doubt be in the mix for the playoffs, but the big question is if head coach Nick Sirianni and Jalen Hurts can get back to the big game and recover from a disastrous collapse.

Ceiling/Floor:

Ceiling: 13-4

Floor: 9-8

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New York Giants

- Record: 6-11 (2023)                                        - Overall finish: Did not qualify for playoffs

- Division placement: 3rd                                  - Head Coach: Brian Daboll (4th season) 

- Offense rank: 280.0 yds/G (29/32)                  - Defense rank: 361.7 yds/G allowed (27/32) 

Last year’s overview:

Coming off a surprise 2022-23 season where the New York Giants made the playoffs for the first time since 2016-17, vibes were different within the Giants organization and the team felt a sense of hope. That hope quickly went away after a 2-7 start and quarterback Daniel Jones went down with a torn ACL in his right knee, ending his season. The offense finished near the bottom of the league as the group finished last in the NFL in points per game and yards per game. Not the season head coach Brian Daboll was expecting, he and General Manager Joe Schoen had a busy offseason ahead of them, and after free agency and the draft, one thing became clear. 

New Additions:

The team still believes in Daniel Jones despite poor play, both sides agreed on a four-year $160 million extension a year ago and it would be detrimental to the organization to move on from that hefty deal. To improve the team, Schoen picked up a nice compliment to star edge rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux by acquiring Brian Burns from Carolina who has 38.5 sacks in the past four seasons. Burns and Thibodeaux should form a dynamic duo off the edge and help improve a defensive unit that only recorded 34 sacks in 2023 (29/32). Ex-Patriots safety Jalen Mills signed with the Giants on a one-year deal giving the team an option after Xavier Mckinney left for Green Bay, he could pair well with rookie safety Tyler Nubin, whom the team drafted in the second round. 

Going over to the offense, after contract disputes with running back Saquon Barkley, both sides parted ways and the team signed Devin Singletary to a three-year deal in his place. Singletary has a connection with Joe Schoen and Daboll from their Buffalo days and has rushed for over 800 yards in the past three seasons. The Giants also made the offensive line a priority, a unit that allowed 85 sacks this past season second most in NFL history. Agreeing to terms with former Raider Jermaine Eluemunor on a two-year contract, coming off a year where he had an 87.9% pass block win rate, and Schoen also added guard Jon Runyan to a three-year deal who has managed to stay healthy throughout his career and is still young. In the draft, the team selected stud wide receiver Malik Nabers in the first round who should have a tremendous impact and another underrated find was tight end Theo Johnson, drafted in the fourth round filling a need after Darren Waller announced his retirement.

Burning Questions for NYG:

The Giants are only a season removed from a playoff appearance that saw them beat Minnesota in the wild-card round, a rebuild is not in Daboll’s plans. The biggest question for the Giants is if Daniel Jones is the guy still and if there is better talent surrounding him. Before Jones got hurt, he had two touchdown passes to six interceptions and did not even throw for over 1,000 passing yards, not good for a player who is one of the highest-paid quarterbacks in the league. While Jones isn’t a flashy type of quarterback who will not win any major awards, he did show in that playoff season he can hold down the fort as he had 15 touchdown passes to go along with seven rushing touchdowns.

Adding Nabers into the mix helps out a lot, a 2023 first-team All-SEC as well as a unanimous All-American and he is only 20 years old. The Giants have had wide receiver trouble for a couple of years now as they have not been able to find a capable number-one option since they traded Odell Beckham Jr. to Cleveland in 2019. The defense should be better this upcoming season, second-year cornerback Deonte Banks will look to build off a strong rookie season and with a defensive line that features Dexter Lawrence, veteran Jordan Phillips, Thibodeaux, and now Burns in the fold, there could be two maybe three players that account for over 10 sacks. If Nabers comes as advertised, Jones returns to his 2022-23 form and the offense does not make too many mistakes, this team could make a push for a wild card spot.

Ceiling/Floor:

Ceiling: 9-8

Floor: 6-11

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Washington Commanders

- Record: 4-13 (2023)                                        - Overall finish: Did not qualify for playoffs

- Division placement: 4th                                  - Head Coach: Dan Quinn (1st season) 

- Offense rank: 312.8 yds/G (24/32)                  - Defense rank: 388.9 yds/G allowed (32/32)

Last year’s overview:

After starting 2-0, the team crumbled and went 2-13 the rest of the way. Second-year quarterback Sam Howell was up and down throughout the season, and a once formidable defensive group suffered regression and dealt players Montez Sweat and Chase Young at the trade deadline. It allowed the most points by any team with 518, had the worst point differential at -189, and had the ninth-worst ranked offense. Changes needed to be made, not only were they made on the field, but off the field as well.

New Additions:

Ron Rivera was let go of head-coaching duties and former General Manager Martin Mayhew was let go. Replacing them, second-year owner Josh Harris hired ex-cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn as head coach and hired former 49ers assistant General Manager Adam Peters. With a new regime in Washington, new faces were added through free agency and the draft. Losing running back Antonio Gibson to New England, the team signed ex-Charger Austin Ekeler to a two-year deal in his place, Ekeler has accumulated over 8,000 scrimmage yards in his first seven seasons in the league. 

Washington added notable linebacker, Bobby Wagner to a one-year deal worth up to $8.5 million which now gives Quinn the option to run a 3-4 defense that he used in Dallas. Wagner may be on the older side (34), but he will provide valuable leadership and a defense that finished last in yards allowed, that trait could be a difference-maker. An underrated signing by Peters came in poaching linebacker Frankie Luvu from Carolina to a three-year contract, a position the Commanders have struggled at, and with a player like Luvu who is a good blitzer, might be the answer. Also coming over from Carolina is safety Jeremy Chinn who agreed to a one-year deal, losing Kamren Curl hurts but Chinn offers versatility and will join a young safety room that features Jartavius Martin, Darrick Forrest, and Percy Butler. 

Going back over to the offensive side, with the team holding the second overall pick Howell’s fate was all but sealed after he was dealt to Seattle and the team signed Marcus Mariota, who will serve as a backup. The Commanders needed a center badly and they got one now after signing ex-Cowboy Tyler Biadasz to a three-year deal who has only missed two games in the past two years. Tight end Zach Ertz agreed to a one-year deal who replaces Logan Thomas whom the team released in March. Transitioning to the draft, Commanders selected Heisman winner LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels who will join this new era, Peters got himself a steal in the second round by drafting cornerback Mike Sainristill from Michigan and receiver Luke McCaffrey (Christian McCaffrey’s brother) picked in the third round is a name to watch.

Burning Questions for WSH: 

Commanders are hoping not to have a repeat of what happened last season and Dan Quinn will get a second chance as head coach to prove he is worthy. Quinn has fielded stout defensive groups over his coaching career, most notable one being the Legion of Boom in Seattle where he served as the team’s defensive coordinator. The additions of Chinn, Luvu, Wagner, and cornerback Michael Davis helps but can second-year cornerback Emmanuel Forbes bounce back after struggling in his rookie year? Washington hopes so as the team spent a first-round pick on him and he was drafted over guys like Christian Gonzalez. 

How impactful will Daniels be? Commanders had one of the worst offensive lines last year, fast forward to now where they have put in three new starters for this upcoming season but the left guard position needs to be better. Nick Allegretti has spent most of his career as a backup guard and is currently listed as the Commanders starter at left guard, time will tell if this pans out. Daniels will enjoy having wide receiver Terry Mclaurin as he is the only player in team history to record four straight 1,000-yard seasons, receiver Jahan Dotson who could shine with a new QB and offensive coordinator now in the fold, and now Ekeler in the backfield.  Playoffs are a stretch for the Commanders, but the good news for Washington is that ex-owner Dan Snyder is gone, an owner that damaged the franchise the moment he bought the team, and new management now in charge brings hope. 

Ceiling/Floor:

Ceiling: 7-10

Floor: 5-12

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