NFC East Delivering The Unlikely Heroes As We Go Into Week 12

Buffalo will be the best team in the league. Tom Brady’s decision to play on makes Tampa Bay NFC favorites. The NFC East will be the weakest division in the league. These were just a few of the pre-season predictions that were flying around two months ago. Now, here we are at Week 12, and while Buffalo are more or less meeting expectations, the other predictions could not be more wrong.

Plenty has already been written about Tampa Bay’s woes. One faint ray of light for them is that the rest of the NFC South is doing little better. The Bucs have at least recovered to 5-5 and the other three teams have losing records so far. Tampa can afford to keep losing and will probably still make the playoffs! The oddity is that this scenario is exactly what was predicted for the NFC East – a division that is, contrary to all expectations, home to the team with the best records in the NFL going into Week 12.

Eagles are soaring  
The Philadelphia Eagles were at an all time low two years ago. The Pederson / Wentz partnership was irreparably broken and the whole squad looked bloated and sub-par. Last year, Jalen Hurts provided glimpses of what might be possible, and while there were some who said Philly might be a “surprise package” this season, nobody dared to dream they would be the longest team to go unbeaten.

The secret to Philadelphia’s success? There’s no magic involved, just an offense that is bursting with confidence and a team that is effectively executing the basics with solid leadership from Nick Sirianni.

Philadelphia’s ascent shows how quickly fortunes can change, and doubtless the Eagles will face the other side of that coin in time, nobody is expecting them to go unbeaten all year. But for now, with the best Super Bowl betting sportsbooks quoting the Eagles at +500 to win the Super Bowl, anyone who took up the preseason odds of +2200 will be sitting pretty!

Giants have surprised us all
Speaking of preseason Super Bowl odds, the NY Giants were offered at +13000, the same odds as the Jets. It’s fair to say New Yorkers expected to have little to smile about during what was expected to be a year of rebuilding for both teams. Despite their Week 11 loss to the Lions, the Giants’ 7-3 still puts them in a great position for a playoff berth. The 6-4 Jets are also exceeding expectations over in the AFC East.

The Giants have not always been pretty, but they have been effective. The week seven win against Jacksonville was a case in point, but grinding out wins with a solid running game and effective defense is certain to make the old-timers purr with pleasure.

Cowboys are in the race
Preseason, the Dallas Cowboys would probably have taken an offer of 7-3 in Week 12, and would have expected that to put them at the top of the NFC East. As it is, it’s only good enough for third, but make no mistake, Dallas are still in the race.

In fact, by the time the regular season shakes out, the sports books have them even money favorites to finish second and clinch a wildcard berth in the playoffs.

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