Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, July 7, 21 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp in Richmond.
—The Redskins last played a game 179 days ago. It will be 67 days until they host the Steelers in their 2016 season opener.
—Days until: Franchise tag contract deadline 8; Preseason opener @ Falcons 35; Final roster cut 58
The Redskins by the numbers
Last year, for the second time since 2011, a team won the NFC East with fewer than 10 wins. Back in 2011 it was the Giants who claimed the division with a 9-7 record. There are two things to note about that season. One was that they were outscored by the opposition on the season; the other is that they won the Super Bowl.
Last year it was the 9-7 Redskins who won the division. They did outscore the opposition but they went one and done on the playoffs.
Will the NFC East have another down year in 2016? How many wins will it take to win the division title? Let’s dust off the $100 in imaginary casino chips and place bets on the possible outcomes.
Eight or fewer wins, $10—This actually isn’t that hard a scenario to paint. The Eagles and Giants suffer from adjustment pains with their new coaches. In Dallas, Romo gets injured again and/or the defense is a steaming hot mess. With the Redskins, Kirk Cousins turns out to be who many thought he was before the 2015 season. Nobody can get anything going and the Cowboys and Redskins both finish 8-8 and sort out the playoff spot with tiebreakers.
Nine wins, $30—A carbon copy of last year, anyone? After facing the AFC West last year, everyone takes on the AFC North, a tougher, more balanced division assuming the Ravens bounce back after an injury plagued season. It’s not easy going against the NFC North, either. In short, I envision a lot of NFCE teams being road underdogs outside of the division. If a team goes 4-2 in the division they will have to fight for another five wins outside of the NFC East.
10 wins, $40—Despite a difficult schedule, I think this could be where Washington lands. The question is, will Dallas or the Eagles be able to catch them here? Sorry, Giants, but I don’t think that Eli to OBJ is enough to get you above .500. The Cowboys will be able to score and the Eagles have the best defense in the division.
11 or more wins, $20—This used to be the norm in the division. From 2000-2009 the division winner had 11 wins or more nine times. From 2010 through last year only the 2014 Cowboys, who went 12-4, took it with more than 10 wins.
How many wins do you think it will take to win the East? Let me know in the comments or vote in the poll!
Tandler on Twitter
In '14 outscored by 4 in Q3, outscored by at least 33 in every other quarter. Did he forget how to adjust?— Rich Tandler (@Rich_TandlerCSN) July 6, 2016
In case you missed it