Answering big NFC East questions: Wentz healthy? Haskins to start?

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It might seem as if summer just got into full swing, but we are a few weeks from the start of NFL training camp and two and half months from the 2019 season.

NFL Nation is setting up the biggest storylines for each division. Here’s what to look for in the NFC East.


NFC EAST


Can Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz get over the injury bug?

Having suffered season-ending injuries each of the past two years (torn ACL/LCL, stress fracture in back), Wentz spent part of the offseason studying how to better take care of his body. He improved his diet and tweaked his training regimen in hopes it will lead to better health and greater career longevity. The Eagles are banking on Wentz staying upright. They moved on from Nick Foles and handed Wentz a four-year, $128 million contract extension. Only time will tell whether that investment will prove a wise one. What we know for now is Wentz looked like his old self this spring and has full intentions of returning to MVP-caliber form. This Eagles team is stacked from top to bottom. If Wentz can stay on the field, Philadelphia has a legit chance of going the distance. — Tim McManus

What will coordinator Kellen Moore bring to the Cowboys’ offense?

The Cowboys’ offense grew stale the past couple of seasons. While they ran the ball effectively and had timely plays under Scott Linehan, Dallas lacked explosive plays. The Cowboys had 39 pass plays of 20 yards or more in 2018. As a first-year coordinator, Moore will have a learning curve. He has one year of coaching experience, serving as the quarterbacks coach last season. He has never called plays but has long been considered a coach-in-waiting dating to his Boise State days, when he became the winningest quarterback in college football history. The base of the Cowboys’ offense remains — which coach Jason Garrett implemented as coordinator in 2007 — but Moore is bringing different elements that will marry some of the spread and run-pass options that have come from the college game to the NFL. In the offseason, Moore used more shifts and motions to run the same plays out of different looks, similar to what coach Sean McVay has done with the Los Angeles Rams. Moore’s creativity on the fly will be a bonus. Teammates have lauded his ability to see the game clearly in real time, which should allow the Cowboys to adjust better than they have in the past. — Todd Archer

When will rookie Dwayne Haskins take over as the Redskins’ starting quarterback?

The Redskins have consistently used one word when discussing their first-round draft pick: patience. They liked what they saw this spring in terms of Haskins’ talent and intelligence. The phrase “arm talent” has been used quite a bit. But before and after the draft, it was clear the Redskins felt he needed work. Haskins started 14 games at Ohio State, so his learning curve is bigger — Kyler Murray has similar experience, but his legs add a weapon Haskins lacks. Washington needs Haskins to improve his footwork — and some of that will come from quickening his reads so he doesn’t feel rushed under duress. The underlying issue: coach Jay Gruden’s job security. He’s entering Year 6 having missed the playoffs three straight seasons. He needs to win, and his desires might clash at times with the organization’s, knowing that Haskins’ development is key to the franchise’s future. But if the Redskins struggle early with Case Keenum or Colt McCoy, then there’s no good reason to keep sitting Haskins. — John Keim

Can the Giants’ offense be better without wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.?

New York is going to need an improved offense overall this season to achieve any level of success. The Giants have 61% of their salary cap earmarked for their offense, with only 37% on their defense. That puts the fate of their 2019 season on quarterback Eli Manning & Co. It seems like a ridiculous premise to improve without Beckham, who is one of the most lethal offensive weapons in football. But the Giants improved their offensive line, still have ample targets and are going to lean heavily on running back Saquon Barkley. It’s possible they’ll produce more with their spread-it-around “village” approach, considering they were a well-below-average unit (27th in points per game through eight games) for a good chunk of last season. — Jordan Raanan



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