NFC East Week 7 Power Rankings: Fan's Take

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The biggest surprise in the NFC East so far this season has been the Washington Redskins. Though their defense has been mediocre at best, and sometimes a liability, Robert Griffin III has exceeded almost everyone's expectations and is a story every single week. He gives Washington a dual-threat offense and has been carrying this team on his back. The New York Giants have shown they can compete with the best of them while the Dallas Cowboys have struggled the last couple of weeks and are looking to regain some momentum. Then there's the Philadelphia Eagles who have blown late leads in two straight games and have already fired their defensive coordinator. They roll into their bye week with a lot on their mind and a lot to solve before they come back and face the undefeated Atlanta Falcons. Below are the NFC power rankings for Week 7.

1. New York Giants (4-2; No change from last week) - The Giants marched into San Francisco and delivered a butt whooping to the 49er's, one of the league's best teams. Their defense came to play and forced Alex Smith to throw three interceptions while Ahmad Bradshaw rushed for 116 yards. This was a big defensive game as neither team gained more than 400 yards and the turnovers are what made the difference as the Niners gave up three while the Giants had none. San Francisco is still, no doubt, a force to be reckoned with but the Giants have shown once again, in the face of all doubters, that so are they. The Giants have a big divisional game at home against Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins this week and should not take that squad lightly or this high they're on could come to an abrupt end.

2. Washington Redskins (3-3; Up 1 spot from last week) - Anyone who doubted the Redskins' decision to start Robert Griffin III following his Week 5 concussion has been silenced so far. You could still argue that it wasn't in RGIII's best interest, nor the team's if it ends up playing a factor in an injury down the road but no one can tell the future and from what RGIII showed this week against the Minnesota Vikings, he was more than ready to step back on the field. He became the first rookie quarterback in the Super Bowl era to rush for more than 100 yards and score two or more touchdowns in a game. By having the most dynamic player in football, the Redskins have been able to hide their defensive flaws enough to currently sit at .500. There haven't been too many convincing games to show that this defense will improve, but RGIII gives this team a chance to win every week when he steps onto the field.

3. Philadelphia Eagles (3-3; Down 1 spot from last week) - At this point I think it's safe to say that the Eagles are in trouble. They blew another late lead this week against the Detroit Lions, making this two weeks in a row that the Eagles have held a lead in the fourth quarter but ended up losing the game (one last second field goal, one field goal in overtime). Now they roll into their bye week with two gut-wrenching losses in back-to-back weeks and have to come out and face the undefeated Atlanta Falcons in their next game. Their season is quickly taking a turn for the worse and the Falcons could make it really difficult for Philly to find their footing.

4. Dallas Cowboys (2-3; No change from last week) - The Cowboys' loss to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 6 was a heartbreaker. They had multiple chances to pull out a win in a stadium that hasn't seen a lot of losses the last couple of seasons. They rallied to within two but Dez Bryant dropped a two-point conversion attempt that would have tied the game, but they weren't done yet. They recovered an onside kick on the ensuing kickoff but displayed terrible clock management, letting the clock tick down from almost 20 seconds down to 6 seconds, while holding a timeout, forcing Dan Bailey to attempt a career-tying 51-yard field goal that sailed wide left. Had the Cowboys got one more play in and gained 4 or 5 more yards, they'd likely be sitting at 3-2 vice 2-3. Neither the organization nor their fans should hang their heads though as they showed a drastic improvement from Week 4's blowout against the Chicago Bears. Dallas gained 481 total yards, 227 of which were rushing, against a defense that prides itself on smothering teams. DeMarco Murray rushed for 93 yards on just 14 carries but had to leave the game early due to a foot injury. The most exciting part for Cowboys fans is the fact that Murray's absence didn't slow the running game down as Felix Jones came in and rushed for 92 yards on 18 carries. Hopefully they can bring that same intensity to Carolina this week where they'll face the Panthers and look to get back to .500 and out of the NFC East's basement.

Brendan Clinch is a diehard Dallas Cowboys fan and has been for more than 20 years. He loves the game of football and follows the league very closely. You can follow him on Twitter @BClinch_YCN.

Sources:

nfl.com

espn.go.com/nfl

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