Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFC East [Print without images]

Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Double Coverage: Who rules the NFC East?

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

 
  ESPN.com Illustration
  Donovan McNabb and Eli Manning have led their respective teams to the Super Bowl, but which team is superior: the Eagles or the Giants?

Posted by Scouts Inc.'s Matt Williamson

There's little question that the NFC East is one of the most -- if not the most -- fiercely competitive divisions in the NFL.

But who rules it? In the past 10 seasons, each of the four teams has laid claim to at least one division title, though the Washington Redskins have not won it since 1999. The Dallas Cowboys claimed the crown in 2007, but the rest of the division titles in that span belong to the Philadelphia Eagles (five) and the New York Giants (three).

Football Today podcast
Listen to Matt Williamson and Jeremy Green's full Eagles vs. Giants debate. Podcast

That said, the Giants have won two conference titles in the past 10 seasons and one Super Bowl title. Despite their divisional dominance, the Eagles have won just one conference title in the past decade.

Clearly, the Eagles and Giants are on another plane in the division, but which team is superior? That's the crux of the Double Coverage portion of the Football Today  podcast. Jeremy Green and I picked sides.

One thing that JG and I did agree upon was that these are the top two teams in the NFC, but feel free to debate that if you must.

Here is an overview of our respective arguments:

Green: The Giants' defensive line is simply the most dominating group of any positional unit and having that luxury will make New York extremely difficult to beat every week of the year and against every opponent they face. You match that with a superb power running game and their ball control offense and the Giants should dominate the line of scrimmage, time of possession and pace of the game. I also feel like New York has the superior quarterback and coaching. When the chips are down, the Giants are a better team than Philadelphia, which has never proved to be able to get over that hump when it matters most.

Williamson: This summer, I was asked to do a piece on the biggest weakness of every NFL team. It wasn't hard to do -- except for the Eagles. The Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots are superior teams to Philadelphia in my opinion, but no one in the league has fewer holes. The Giants have a superior defensive line, but I will take the Eagles' linebackers and defensive backs without hesitation. I do concede that New York has the superior running game, but the offensive lines are now closer than ever and I trust Philadelphia's passing game by leaps and bounds over the Giants'. Throw in more superb return men than any one team should have and I think the choice is obvious.

Click here to listen to how it turned out and to find out how Jason Soderberg ruled in this heated debate. Then let us know your thoughts.

Scouts Inc. watches games, breaks down film and studies football from all angles for ESPN.com.