Just how big is Week 8 in the NFL this weekend? Well, considering it is the half way point in the season (actually the 47% way point), there have been no bigger stories until this week in the season.
The Giants are 5-1 and are leading the NFC East and the Washington Redskins (5-2) by half a game. They do hold the head-to-head tiebreaker on the Redskins, but a lot could change after Sunday. With Washington playing the Lions in what is as automatic as a win can get in professional sports, we can call Washington 6-2 at this point. And while Washington hits the showers and gets ready to fly home after a blowout victory, they will be tuned into Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, where the G-Men find themselves trying to hold onto their lead in the Beast.
But that isn’t all in the Beast. The stumbling Cowboys (4-3) are playing for their lives without their star QB against the Bucs, who are pretty good. They are really very good and if postseason play were to start this weekend instead of in 10 weekends, the Bucs would have a bye. Crazy, isn’t it? Dallas is close to missing out on the playoffs and extending their postseason winless streak (their last playoff win was in 1996) to another season. Reports are that Tony Romo will not be playing until mid-November, which guarantees he misses this week and up to at least two more. The Dallas Cowboys have a lot of issues whether it is their players or coaches, or owner/GM chiming in, and they are about to self destruct (unless you believe they have already). Dallas’ next three opponents (which would bring us to mid-November) are Tampa Bay, the G-Men, and Washington, but they do have a bye week between the Giants and Skins. There is a very, very good chance the Cowboys lose all three of those games, with or without Tony Romo, so the fact that he might not play should not sit well with fans of the Big D. It looks like the NFL playoffs will be without “America’s Team” this season. And it looks like Wade Phillips will be without a job next season (and possibly a part of this one).
The Eagles return from their bye week with a home game against the surprise of the league, the Atlanta Falcons. I have not bought into the Falcons yet, and I think it is unbelievable that they are 4-2, but they will come back to reality this weekend when the Eagles punish them. Philly sits at 3-3, a half game back of the Big D, and two back of the NYG. They are 0-2 in the division, but have yet to see Big Blue and are right now in a whole of a lot better shape than the Cowboys.
So, there you have it. A great deal of drama in the NFC East this Sunday and after this week, we should be able to see the postseason picture starting to take shape.