- Dan Graziano, ESPN Staff Writer
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Four days until Eagles-Cowboys. I'm sorry, Giants and Redskins fans. You know I love you. But this week, Eagles-Cowboys is just plain where it's at. Fortunately, the links play no favorites.
Back in 2004, when he was the No. 1 pick in the draft, Eli Manning wanted to be in New York, not in San Diego, and he got his wish. His message for presumptive 2012 No. 1 pick Andrew Luck: He has no regrets about directing where he ended up.
Jason Pierre-Paul is one of the breakout defensive stars of the NFL this year. But if having Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora healthy at the same time means he has to play fewer snaps, that's fine with young Jason, who appreciates what those guys have done to help him become the player he's become so quickly.
Jason Garrett continues to say he hasn't yet decided who will start at running back this week -- the perpetually disappointing Tashard Choice, or DeMarco Murray, the rookie who broke Emmitt Smith's team record for rush yards in a game last week. Whatever. Who cares who "starts"? And who cares who gets more carries once Felix Jones is healthy again? Aren't the Cowboys better off using their talented backs in the situations that best fit their skills? Shouldn't they all get to play? Aren't there enough snaps for everyone? I think there should be.
And on defense, the Cowboys could be getting stronger, as another 2011 draft pick is now ready to help out. Bruce Carter could be limited to special teams at first, but you never know. He could help out at linebacker sooner rather than later.
Santana Moss puts his return timetable at three to six weeks, which would obviously be better than the five-to-seven-week timetable we were given earlier in the week. Regardless, it would seem that Fred Davis is liable to catch a boatload of passes between now and whenever Moss gets back.
And here's a story about John Beck getting more comfortable with the starting quarterback's job, even though I really don't think quarterback is the Redskins' most important position and I expect it to change back and forth between Beck and Rex Grossman at least a couple of more times before this season ends.
Asante Samuel is upset that the Eagles talked about trading him. He said some nasty stuff about the guys running the front office, then kinda sorta backed off of it later in the day. Whatever. It's all there if you're into that sort of thing. The Eagles didn't trade Samuel. They might next offseason. Meantime, I'm sure he's perfectly interested in helping this year's team win.
Trent Cole should be back this week, and overall the Eagles' defense is getting healthier. 2010 first-rounder Brandon Graham might even be back soon, though it's unclear what role he'd play. Cole's return can only mean good things, though, for Philly as it prepares for a crucial game against Dallas on Sunday night.