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Football Outsiders projects the NFC East to be really awful in 2016


Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN's Todd McShay recently released his 2017 NFL Mock Draft (In$ider). Yes, the 2016 NFL Draft may have just ended, but no, that won't stop people from taking a waaaaaay-too-early look ahead to next year. (In fairness, we posted a 2017 NFL Mock Draft earlier this week.) But I'm not here to talk about McShay's actual picks. First of all, the Eagles don't even have a first round pick next year. Second, the more interesting part about McShay's mock is the actual draft order. He doesn't determine it on his own. Rather, each team's final standing is based on early record projections from Football Outsiders.

With that in mind, the Eagles are currently predicted to finish with the No. 6 pick in next year's draft. Of course, the Browns own that pick due to Philadelphia's trade up to No. 2 overall this year. Finishing at No. 6 in the draft order would mean the Eagles will only win four or five games this season. That's not pretty.

The good news for the Eagles is the rest of the NFC East is projected to be pretty awful as well. Philadelphia isn't even the worst NFC East team in this Football Outsiders model. That honor goes to the New York Giants, who are picking at No. 3 overall. The Washington Redskins, meanwhile, are only slightly better than the Eagles. They're set to pick at No. 7.

With three teams set to finish in the bottom seven, Football Outsiders has the Cowboys running away with the division crown at the No. 25 pick. That would certainly be a big turn around for a Dallas team that went 4-12 last season.

I don't think the NFC East will be as bad as Football Outsiders is projecting here, but I don't think they'll be any good either. I think that's what the Eagles are expecting as well. That's why they resigned Sam Bradford ... to be competitive in the short-term. Then they drafted Carson Wentz with the long-term in mind. I don't have a lot of optimism that the Eagles will be very good this year. I do think they might be able to take advantage of a weak division, however, and top out at an eight win record.

Here's how all 32 teams stack up in this early record projection.

NFC West
1. Cardinals (32)
2. Seahawks (28)
3. Rams (16)
4. 49ers (2)

NFC South
1. Panthers (23)
2. Saints (17)
3. Falcons (15)
4. Buccaneers (8)

NFC North
1. Packers (30)
2. Vikings (22)
3. Lions (19)
4. Bears (11)

NFC East
1. Cowboys (25)
2. Washington (7)
3. Eagles (6)
4. Giants (3)

AFC West
1. Chiefs (29)
2. Chargers (18)
3. Broncos (14)
4. Raiders (5)

AFC South
1. Texans (21)
2. Colts (13)
3. Jaguars (12)
4. Titans (10)

AFC North
1. Steelers (31)
2. Bengals (26)
3. Ravens (24)
4. Browns (1)

AFC East
1. Patriots (27)
2. Bills (20)
3. Jets (9)
4. Dolphins (4)

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