All-NFC East Team: Week 15 update

December, 14, 2011
12/14/11
9:49
AM ET
I hereby present this week's edition of the NFC East All-Division Team, which includes nine Cowboys, six Giants, six Eagles and six Redskins. Yes, I am aware that the Giants won the game. But that brings me to the disclaimer that no one will read:

This All-Division team reflects performance for the entire year to date. It is not -- repeat, NOT -- simply a list of awards for Week 14 performance. That's why Felix Jones isn't on it.

I'll explain some of the more difficult decisions at the end. First, the roster:

Quarterback: Eli Manning, Giants (Last week: Manning)

Running back: LeSean McCoy, Eagles (McCoy)

Wide receiver: Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz, Giants (Nicks, Cruz)

[+] EnlargeTony Fiammetta
Matthew Emmons/US PresswireTony Fiammetta took the starting fullback spot away from Darrell Young.
Tight end: Jason Witten, Cowboys (Witten)

Fullback: Tony Fiammetta, Cowboys (Darrel Young)

Left tackle: Jason Peters, Eagles (Peters)

Left guard: Evan Mathis, Eagles (Mathis)

Center: Will Montgomery, Redskins (Montgomery)

Right guard: Kyle Kosier, Cowboys (Kosier)

Right tackle: Tyron Smith, Cowboys (Smith)

Defensive end: Jason Pierre-Paul, Giants; Trent Cole, Eagles (Pierre-Paul, Cole)

Defensive tackle: Jay Ratliff, Cowboys; Cullen Jenkins, Eagles (Ratliff, Jenkins)

Outside linebacker: DeMarcus Ware, Cowboys; Brian Orakpo, Redskins (Ware, Ryan Kerrigan)

Inside linebacker: London Fletcher, Redskins; Sean Lee, Cowboys (Fletcher, Lee)

Cornerback: Asante Samuel, Eagles; Josh Wilson, Redskins (Samuel, Corey Webster)

Safety: Kenny Phillips, Giants; Gerald Sensabaugh, Cowboys (Phillips, Sensabaugh)

Kicker: Dan Bailey, Cowboys (Bailey)

Punter: Steve Weatherford, Giants (Weatherford)

Kick returner: Brandon Banks, Redskins (Banks)

Punt returner: Brandon Banks, Redskins (Banks)

I continue to view the quarterback race between Manning and the Cowboys' Tony Romo as something very close to a tie. But I'm not going to do ties on the All-Division Team. I'm going to make a pick every week, even if that's very difficult. To do that, I will use tiebreakers. This week's is simple. Manning's team is 1-0 against Romo's. Yes, that means if the Cowboys had held the lead, the spot could have gone back to Romo. We'll never know.

Cornerback! The most confounding of the weekly choices. I'm keeping Samuel in his spot because he had a good game and because Pro Football Focus ranks him as the No. 6 cornerback in the league this year. Yeah, the whole league. So go yell at them. And I took Webster out because (a) Wilson's been knocking on this door anyway and (b) I couldn't in good conscience put in a cornerback who played in that Cowboys-Giants game Sunday night. And yeah, I put in a safety who did, but this is an all-year exercise, and that safety's body of work justifies it. Truth be told, I don't think there's a single cornerback in the division who can legitimately be angry about not making this team, because I don't think anyone in the division has played the position very well this year.

Flopped Orakpo and Kerrigan again in that OLB spot. Orakpo's playing like he wants to stay there (not that Kerrigan isn't). Redskins fans are going to love watching these guys for the next however many years.

And I changed fullbacks, because as great and undervalued a player as Young is, it's impossible to ignore how much better the Cowboys' running game is with Fiammetta in there. I just think what he's done in the time he's been on the field this year is above-and-beyond kind of stuff, and it's not a slight against Young, who I think is a fine player.

So let me know. What'd I get wrong?

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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