2013 Week 17 NFL power rankings: NFC East

Eagles look set to win the NFC East

12/27/13 in NFL   |   ZacWassink   |   74 respect

Dec 22, 2013; Landover, MD, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) watches from the bench against the Washington Redskins in the fourth quarter at FedEx Field. The Cowboys won 24-23. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY SportsIt will all come down to Week 17 of the 2013 NFL regular season for two teams in the NFC East. The Philadelphia Eagles going into Dallas and beating the Cowboys doesn't seem all that difficult a mission now that a certain quarterback who has also spent a considerable amount of time as a punching bag (probably) won't be on the field on Sunday night. As for the other two teams, the final day of the campaign will mostly be about getting it over with as soon as possible.

Washington and New York will both have difficult questions to answer this coming offseason.

2013 Week 17 NFL power rankings: NFC East

30. Washington Redskins (3-12): No, it isn't a knee-jerk reaction to consider that the Redskins may not have a franchise quarterback who is currently sitting out the end of 2013. How the club handled Robert Griffin III at the end of last season is irrelevant. What's done is done. The past can't be erased.

RG3's battles with fitness have to be a concern moving forward. Year three of his career will prove to be a pivotal one for both player and team. Kirk Cousins has looked solid in his appearances during what is the garbage time portion of the season for Washington. A popular opinion has been that the 'Skins will look to move Cousins at some point over the next several months.

Maybe, just maybe, that isn't the smartest idea.

23. New York Giants (6-9): Fans of the Giants who want the team to tank for the highest possible first round draft pick have to answer the obvious question: Who is the superstar player that the Giants will be missing out on if they finish the campaign at 6-10 or even 7-9? Odds are that they aren't interested in taking a quarterback or big-name wide receiver with that first selection.

Any cornerback or offensive lineman New York may have been targeting a week ago isn't catapulting up mock drafts anytime soon.

Certain individuals who have never before played a down of meaningful football want New York to lose on the final Sunday of December. Eli Manning doesn't share that desire. I'm going to go with the opinion of the two-time Super Bowl MVP QB on this one.

16. Dallas Cowboys (8-7): ESPN continues to report that Dallas QB Tony Romo is out for the season due to a herniated disk. Jerry Jones is claiming that Romo is merely dealing with back spasms. One of those sources is going to be proven right and soon.

All indications are that Romo will, at best, be well under 100 percent if he does take the field for what is essentially a home playoff game against the Eagles. The coaching staff and front office of the Cowboys is apparently so convinced in Romo's ability to start in that pivotal contest that the likes of Tyler Thigpen, Caleb Hanie and John Skelton were considered.

Former Giants quarterback David Carr could serve as a backup to Kyle Orton. Yeesh.

10. Philadelphia Eagles (9-6): Sure, the Eagles will be on the road on Sunday night. They are giving seven points in the latest line as of the posting of this piece, and that isn't just because of Romo's injury woes. The Dallas defense has looked downright terrible throughout portions of 2013, and the offense of the Eagles is clicking at the perfect time of the season.

It's my biggest criticism of this Eagles team that leads me to believe that Philly may not be a slam-dunk victory away from the playoffs. Philadelphia took entire halves of games off at several points during the fall. Things could get murky for the visitors if that again occurs in Dallas.

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