The 11 dumbest, wildest moments from insane NFC East season originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
The Washington Football Team has officially won the NFC East... with seven wins. And that feels like a surprisingly high number.
After a season of absolutely garbage football from the whole division, Sunday night's 20-14 Washington win decided the division title, an ignominious accomplishment for the Football Team, who will likely get steamrolled in the playoffs by the Buccaneers.
While the football was often embarrassing this season, at least the division provided a ton of laughs.
So let's run it back and count down the nine dumbest, silliest, weirdest moments from the NFC Least year that was.
11. Joe Judge gets muddy
We should've known from back in training camp that this would be a weird division when first-year head coach Joe Judge took a swan dive in the mud to try and earn his players' respect and admiration:
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) September 2, 2020
Some people might love the move. To me, it was just the beginning of a year's worth of shenanigans.
10. Mike McCarthy pulverizes some produce
Another head coach with some unorthodox moves, this time from down in Dallas. Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy thought he wasn't getting through to his guys, so he brought out actual watermelons during a pre-game meeting and smashed the bejeezus out of them:
#Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy pulled out a sledgehammer during Saturday night’s team meeting and smashed watermelons like Gallagher to emphasize their objectives. Players roared, then responded with an inspired win in Minnesota. @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/oiUThTYuYJ
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) November 23, 2020
Some people might give McCarthy points because the Cowboys won that game, and you know what? That's fair.
But it's still extremely silly.
9. The Giants nearly fumble Week 17 away
In the Giants' Week 17 win over the Cowboys, New York closed out the season with a perfect 2020 NFC East move.
All Wayne Gallman needed to do here was get on the ground after picking up the first down, and the game would've essentially been over, but instead:
— NFL Officiating (@NFLOfficiating) January 3, 2021
Ridiculous fumble, botched recovery, weird review - all with the division on the line. Goodness.
It's sort of unbelievable how bad all four teams in this division were this season. And this is only No. 7 on the list!
8. Doug Pederson punts his way to a tie
Hello, Eagles fans. I'm sure you think back once or twice a week to the Eagles' Week 3 tie against Cincinnati, a truly cursed game in a cursed season.
The Eagles had the ball at the Bengals' 41-yard line with 19 seconds to play in overtime and a 3rd & 7 on deck. Carson Wentz threw an incomplete pass, and then Matt Pryor false-started on a field goal attempt, and then... Doug Pederson punted?! With 19 seconds left in overtime?!
Indefensible. Here's what NBC Sports Philadelphia's Reuben Frank wrote of the decision that day:
"Before we get into Carson Wentz and everything else … PUNTING ON 4TH- AND-12 WITH 19 SECONDS LEFT IN OVERTIME FROM THE BENGALS' 46-YARD-LINE? WHAT IS DOUG THINKING? Good grief, Doug."
Yep. What a nightmare.
7. The Cowboys fumble four times in one quarter
The early-season Cowboys were an absolute chaos team, scoring points in bunches and losing in new and inventive ways. In Week 2 against the equally chaotic Falcons, Dallas managed to fumble the ball four (4) times in the FIRST QUARTER:
I would've lost my mind.
The only reason this absolutely astounding feat isn't higher on the list? THEY WON. Because the Falcons will always be the Falcons.
6. Malik Jackson's sly little rule-break
This one was on the light-hearted side of things from this ridiculous division. Malik Jackson, in the middle of the Eagles' surprising primetime win over the 49ers, pulled out a true veteran move.
With the ball at the 1-yard line and the Eagles up by 11, the game's refs were trying to suss out exactly where to place the football in the dramatic final minutes of the game as the 49ers attempted to punch the ball into the end zone.
Then Jackson did this:
Subtle, but brilliant, and maybe the funniest visual of the whole season. Just a simple little *bump*.
Thank you, Malik. You were a beacon of joy and laughter in a terrible year.
5. This comical ineptitude on a fumble
Was there a more NFC East play this year than this one?
4. This pathetic Carson Wentz fumble
Okay, maybe this one:
— NFL (@NFL) November 2, 2020
3. The Eagles totally tank Week 17
The Eagles entered Week 17 with no incentive to win and every incentive to lose, and boy did their approach to the game look like it. Their inactive list was deep with their best players, Carson Wentz was a healthy scratch, and Doug Pederson chose to pull Jalen Hurts for Nate Sudfeld in the fourth quarter down by a single score.
Giants players, who needed an Eagles win against Washington to secure an improbable playoff berth, were SO angry:
I think the eagles just hate us more than washington. That’s only thing that could make sense right?
— Golden Tate (@ShowtimeTate) January 4, 2021
Can someone make it make sense to me what’s going on....?
— Saquon Barkley (@saquon) January 4, 2021
2. Mike Nolan's hot sauce hijinks
Back to the hilariously strange coaches in the NFC East: Cowboys defensive coordinator Mike Nolan really did himself in with a little Tabasco-in-the-eye during a press conference:
— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) October 27, 2020
I know Nolan's in charge of the defense, but he should think twice before bringing that kind of heat. (Sorry.)
1. Daniel Jones takes himself out
This was always going to be No. 1. Just a perfect encapsulation of this stupid division, and this stupid year.
Here's my favorite call of The Daniel Jones Trip:
Giants radio call, by request. pic.twitter.com/hcBnQJi0mb
— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) October 23, 2020
It feels too good to be true, except it really happened. What a season.
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