We are amidst the offseason which means there is really nothing to talk about besides getting overly excited about what is going on at OTAs. That's a bit boring, so let's find something to argue about! The division experienced a lot of flux in starters this past offseason, gaining and losing a lot of players on both sides of the ball. With a good idea of who the starters are, or at least the impact starters are, here are the best offensive players in the NFC East.
Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys: There is no dancing around how good Dak Prescott was last season. Prescott tied the lead for most wins by a rookie quarterback and set the record for passer rating, completion percentage and TD/INT ratio. While he definitely had a nice supporting cast, his receivers and line were no different from the team that only won four games in the previous year. The Cowboys lucked into Prescott, however. They wanted to draft at least three other quarterbacks instead of him and then only gave him the starting role after Tony Romo AND Kellen Moore went down with injury. Prescott's play is even more impressive considering he didn't even get the full offseason as the starter. Now he will and the Cowboys added a few more pieces to the offense to support him so while his stats may be hard to double, he should progress overall as a player.
Second Team: Eli Manning, New York Giants
Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys: No one was surprised when Ezekiel Elliott hit the ground running his rookie season. He was the first rookie to lead the league in rushing yards since 1999 with 1,631 and was six yards short of 2,000 yards of offense. He is a three down star for the Cowboys and there is almost no reason to thing he will slow down given that the line in front of him is still very young and the offense added more weapons in the passing game to take pressure off of him.
LeGarrette Blount, Philadelphia Eagles: LeGarrette Blount's career is always going to be a massive "what if?" because whenever he got the ball consistently he was a game changing back but for many different reasons he rarely got to see that type of workload. Only in his most recent season and his rookie year in 2010 did he see at least 200 carries and each time he rewarded his team with at least 1,000 yards rushing, scoring 18 touchdowns on the ground for the Patriots last season. As a 30 year old back, it is hard to predict how much juice he has left, but considering how he played last year, it is hard to think there isn't still something left worth using. The Eagles likely are not using Blount in a bell-cow role, as he might just be a fourth quarter finisher type of back and overall split carries with Darren Sproles, Wendell Smallwood and Donnel Pumphrey. Regardless, even in a limited role, Blount should be a solid piece of offense for Philadelphia this year.
Second Team: Paul Perkins, New York Giants and Samaje Perine, Washington
Odell Beckham Junior, New York Giants: The start of Odell Beckham Junior's career has been historical in terms of production. No other receiver comes close to his first three year numbers (Catches, Yards, Touchdowns) besides Randy Moss. Beckham has been the catalyst for the Giants on offense and continues to make Eli Manning look a lot better than he actually is. While he does have reputation for being mercurial, his play always backs up his confidence. With Brandon Marshall now in town and Sterling Shepard taking another step forward, it will be hard to double Odell all the time and while he may not se as many targets as he has, his efficiency should get even better. That's scary.
Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys: Dez Bryant has seen a dip in numbers the last two years due to a mixture of injuries, poor quarterback play and offensive philosophy shifts. The team got less vertical and threw less this past year so Bryant's big play opportunities were limited. Regardless, Bryant still caught eight touchdowns on only 50 catches, an impressive rate and averaged nearly 16 yards per catch. So his yardage may have dipped but he is still the same player who strikes fear into the hearts of defensive backs. Expect him to get back to All Pro numbers next season as the passing game opens up and he sees more targets.
Alshon Jeffery, Philadelphia Eagles: The Eagles were big winners this offseason adding the massive red zone threat from Chicago on a one year deal. Jeffrey's career rarely afforded him the ideal quarterback situation to maximize his talent but he has shown, when healthy, he is a dominant player. The Eagles are betting on his health in order to finally add a playmaker to their receiving corps. Carson Wentz has shown in college and the NFL he is willing to pull the trigger on low percentage passes and Jeffrey is the perfect type of player to maximize those targets as a deep threat and in the red zone. Given that he stays healthy, he should have a renaissance season.
Second Team: Brandon Marshall, New York Giants, Jamison Crowder, Washington and Cole Beasley, Dallas Cowboys
Jordan Reed, Washington: Talent has never been an issue for Jordan Reed, only health. Even while missing six games in the last two seasons, Reed has still been a valuable part of Washington's offense. He is an athletic target in the middle of the field who can dominate the catch point and get yards after. With Desean Jackson and Pierre Garcon out of town, Reed should see an even bigger role next season.
Second Team: Zach Ertz, Philadelphia Eagles
Tyron Smith, Dallas Cowboys: There is a lot of competition for the honor of best left tackle in the division, but Tyron Smith has been a dominant player the last few years and shows no signs of slowing down. Not only is he a great pass blocker, but he is an overwhelming run blocker as well. At 26 years old, he is only just now hitting his peak as a player.
Second Team: Trent Williams, Washington.
Lane Johnson, Philadelphia Eagles: Ever since his rookie year, Johnson has been a game changing presence on the line for the Eagles. The only thing that has held him back, really, has been suspensions that take him off the field and hurt the team. Hopefully the team will get 16 games of him going forward, because it is noticeable with him off and on the field. When he is able to play, there isn't a right tackle in football I would take over him.
Second Team: Morgan Moses, Washington
Brandon Brooks, Philadelphia Eagles: Brandon Brooks was a massive free agent addition last season that looks to have been the right move in his first year. He is a very complete all around player and provides a dependable presence on the interior for the Eagles. Hopefully with improved center play this season, Brooks should have an even easier job going forward.
Zack Martin, Dallas Cowboys: Zack Martin is not just the best guard in the NFL, he is probably one of the best offensive players in the league. Martin is a complete and dominant player who has great athletic ability and attitude. He is a perfect fit for the Cowboys offense and is a big reason there run game has been so dominant. Martin has run into few defensive linemen he has trouble with unless their name is Fletcher Cox, luckily.
Second Team: Justin Pugh, New York Giants and Brandon Scherff, Washington
Travis Frederick, Dallas Cowboys: I am sick of writing the names of Cowboys players but here we are. It feels like ancient history when people killed the Cowboys for drawing Frederick in the first round and he has turned out to be among the best players in that draft class and probably a top two center in the NFL. Frederick is a nasty run blocker and pass blocker and he is one of the many young pieces on the Cowboys offensive line that will hold that team together for the next few years.
Second Team: Weston Richburg, New York Giants