The Fantasy Points staff recently welcomed NFL Films legend Greg Cosell and NFL Insider Adam Caplan to talk about the NFC East as part of our Virtual Town Hall Series. I highly encourage you to check out the entire conversation by accessing our Livestream archives.
Greg and Adam joined John Hansen and company to break down the NFC East from front to back to help us get a deeper understanding of every roster heading into the summer. John has been holding these closed-door meetings with Greg and Adam for the last 15+ years. The Fantasy Points staff is proud to let the public peek behind the curtain during these exclusive Livestreams! Here are the notes we compiled from the NFC East meeting.
Adam Caplan (AC): Michael Gallup should be ready to play early in the season off of his ACL injury but there’s no exact timeline for his return. Third-round pick Jalen Tolbert will get a lot of reps this summer and he has a real chance to get into the rotation. James Washington also got a fully guaranteed contract so he’ll be in the mix, too. The Cowboys have a lot of pass targets available with Amari Cooper gone.
Greg Cosell (GC): Tolbert isn’t a short-area quickness guy and he’s not purely explosive. He’s more of a finesse receiver and he can threaten a defense at all three levels.
GC: CeeDee Lamb will become the guy this year and there are plenty of opportunities up for grabs for these other receivers. Lamb will line up inside and outside but he’ll primarily be the inside receiver in 11 personnel with a combination of Gallup, Tolbert, and Washington on the outside.
GC: First-round pick Tyler Smith should play offensive guard. He’s nasty and plays with an edge but he also plays undisciplined at times (Greg notes that he just turned 21 years old). He doesn’t think Smith is ready to play on the outside because of his pass protection issues.
New York Giants
GC: Evan Neal will play right tackle and he notes that he played guard and right tackle at Alabama before moving to tackle last season. Andrew Thomas improved as the season moved along and the Giants should continue his growth at left tackle.
GC: Wan’Dale Robinson is a playmaking receiver and he could become a volume receiver, and he’ll most likely be a slot receiver with his size (5’8”, 178 pounds), good with the ball in his hands. Robinson’s selection coupled with Kadarius Toney’s presence signals that Brian Daboll wants to get the ball out of Daniel Jones’ hands quickly to give him easy throws.
AC: Toney’s issues were well documented last season and the Giants were pissed he didn’t play through injuries. They made Toney available but they wanted a lot for him. Adam believes Toney could be really special with this coaching staff.
AC: The new staff inherited Kenny Golladay and his terrible contract, and they could get out of his contract next off-season if he continues to disappoint. They’re five deep at WR right now but they could easily be down to just Robinson and Toney by next off-season.
AC: Mike Kafka is going to call plays this season but Daboll is going to be heavily involved. Adam called him the “brains” behind Kansas City’s passing the last couple of seasons. Daboll is a Type-A coach and he’s going to work Jones hard. Jones was too afraid to make mistakes with the old coaching staff.
AC: The early intel from the new coaching staff is positive on Saquon Barkley. The Giants haven’t done anything at RB outside of adding Matt Breida this off-season. Graham adds that they’re candidates to add a running back later this summer. The Giants shopped Barkley but no team wanted to take on his contract.
GC: Fourth-round pick Daniel Bellinger is more of a #2 TE watching his tape.
GC: A.J. Brown is good running in-breaking routes and he’s terrific after the catch, which is two concepts he’ll do quite a bit with Jalen Hurts.
AC: Brown’s knee issues may have kept the Titans away from giving him the size of a contract he desired.
GC: The Eagles want to expand their passing game and they know they can’t run their offense like the way they did at the end of last season (Adam points out that they attempted just 27 passes per game after Week 7). They want to accentuate what Hurts does well in the running game, but the passing game needs to become far more expansive, which is why they traded Brown. They need to find that balance.
AC: The Eagles have essentially spent a pick on a wide receiver in the first two rounds of the last four seasons if you consider trading for Brown like using a first-round pick. They clearly want to lean more into the passing game but quarterback play continues to hold them back.
GC: Devonta Smith will be moved around more this season. Brown will primarily be the X receiver and Smith will be the Z receiver, which is a better situation for him.
AC: Hurts would have to play extremely poorly to lose his job to Gardner Minshew this season. Hurts could be really good for fantasy if he becomes more accurate, and Greg adds that receivers don’t make quarterbacks more accurate. It’s Hurts’ responsibility to become more accurate.
AC: Kenneth Gainwell ran well around the goal line last season (he had four TD runs from inside the 10-yard line), and they should expand the way that they use him. Greg said he’s put on weight this off-season and he could play closer to 215 pounds after playing around 200 pounds as a rookie.
AC: Brian Robinson’s selection was more about improving the #2 back spot (Jaret Patterson) than it was about Antonio Gibson. Paterson is more of a third back and they wanted more size behind Gibson. Robinson will be the #2 and Gibson is going to lose some carries to him. Gibson has been banged up and his vision has been an issue through his first two seasons. Adam wouldn’t draft him as an #1 fantasy RB.
GC: Greg thought Gibson should’ve been a slot WR coming out of Memphis. Greg really liked Robinson’s tape coming out and he thought he had feature back size and traits. Robinson isn’t purely elusive or shifty but he catches defenders by surprise with his light feet. Greg wouldn’t be surprised if he becomes the better back.
GC: Jahan Dotson is a complete receiver who can do anything. He’s not big (5’10”, 178 pounds) but he plays big, and he’s fearless and competitive in the middle of the field. Dotson played significant snaps at boundary X at Penn State and he can line up all over the field. Greg liked him more than Chris Olave.
AC: Curtis Samuel is finally completely healthy after injuring his groin last May. They don’t have a lot of size with their top three WRs in Terry McLaurin, Dotson, and Samuel.
GC: Cole Turner is long with really good size (6’6”, 246 pounds). He’s a plus athlete who can work the middle of the field. He’s a bit of a straight-line player with his stride and he doesn’t know if he’s a vertical receiver.
AC: Carson Wentz won’t be on the team next year if he stinks again. Ron Rivera is taking this quarterback situation year by year. Sam Howell had great tape before last season and they took him because he was a great value in the fifth round.
GC: Wentz played better than the public perception, but the Colts took the ball out of his hands down the stretch of last season before the Week 18 meltdown. He’s devolved into being a system player that’s capable of big-time throws.