Fullback Vonta Leach says the New York Giants have expressed an interest in him. Here's news around the NFC East.
The sharps in Las Vegas consider the New York Giants the favorites to win the NFC East this season, and it looks like Big Blue could add another valuable weapon to their offensive attack.
Usually the NFC East's most steady organization, the New York Giants have been juggling contract and injury concerns for some of their best players during OTAs.
The process of nominating players, coaches, executives, etc. for the a team’s Mt. Rushmore moves to New York. As we wrap up the NFC East, we open the floor for nominations from Giants fans. Eventually, the nominations will be whittled to roughly eight finalists per team.  We’ll then put the measure out to a vote,…
Over the next few weeks, "Shutdown Corner" will pay homage to "Office Space" (TPS reports) as we take a quick look back at each team's 2012 season and a look at what lies ahead for the 2013 offseason. We wrap up the NFC East with the Washington Redskins. 2012 record : 10-6 What went wrong : First-round quarterback Robert Griffin injured his right knee while scrambling during a 31-28 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Dec. 9. Griffin made a remarkable return a few weeks later, but aggravated the injury early in a wild-card playoff loss to the Seattle Seahawks, requiring surgery that included his anterior cruciate ligament, putting his availability for the 2013 season-opener in doubt. In addition to Griffin's injury, the Redskins lost their top pass-rusher, Brian Orakpo, to a torn pectoral muscle in Week 2 and wide receiver Pierre Garcon, who was signed to a five-year, $42.5 million contract early in the 2012 free agent signing period, missed most of the first two months of the season with a foot injury. Speaking of injuries, safety Brandon Meriweather earned $3.5 million in his first season with the Redskins, but a knee injury limited the veteran to 42 snaps on defense and special teams. The Redskins were one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL, but ranked 28th in total defense, were 30th when defending the pass, and ranked 32nd on third downs, allowing opponents to convert on 44.19 percent of third down opportunities. According to Football Outsiders' advanced metrics, which adjust for opponent, the Redskins ranked 17th in defensive DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average) and were 14th against the pass. What went right : The Redskins traded a boatload of picks to move up to the No. 2 spot and select Griffin and the rookie from Baylor proved he was well worth it. Griffin passed for 3,200 yards with 20 touchdowns and just five interceptions for a passer rating of 102.4. According to Football Outsiders, Griffin ranked 11th in passing DYAR (Defense-adjusted Yards Above Replacement) and was fifth in rushing DYAR among quarterbacks, rushing for 815 yards and seven touchdowns and was named the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year. Another rookie in D.C. was Alfred Morris, a sixth-round running back from Florida Atlantic who finished second in the NFL with 1,613 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns. Morris was fifth among NFL running backs in Football Outsiders' rushing DYAR and, along with Griffin, helped a Redskins offense that ranked fifth in total offense, but was first in yards per play, rushing yards per game, passing yards per play and was fourth in the red zone and scoring offense. Coaching/front office changes : The Redskins hired Keith Burns to replace Danny Smith as special teams coordinator. Estimated 2013 cap space : $5.118 million over their estimated adjusted cap number of $107.37 million.
Over the next few weeks, "Shutdown Corner" will pay homage to "Office Space" (TPS reports) as we take a quick look back at each team's 2012 season and a look at what lies ahead for the 2013 offseason. We continue in the NFC East with the New York Giants. 2012 record : 9-7 What went wrong : A 6-2 record at the midway point of the season had the defending Super Bowl champion Giants poised to walk away with the NFC East and defend the Lombardi Trophy in the playoffs. The Giants would lose three of their first four games to start the second half of the season, including a 17-16 loss to the eventual NFC East champion Washington Redskins on Dec. 3. After a blowout win of the New Orleans Saints the following week, the Giants were shut out 34-0 by the Atlanta Falcons and lost 33-14 to the Baltimore Ravens, putting them in a situation where they needed to beat the Philadelphia Eagles and have three teams lose and/or tie to make the playoffs. The Giants won, but two of the three teams they needed to lose in the regular season finale won their games, eliminating the Giants from the postseason. The Giants' problems were largely on the defensive side of the ball. In terms of raw numbers, the Giants allowed 383.4 yards per game, which ranked 31st in the NFL, ahead of only the New Orleans Saints, who were historically bad last season. The Giants were 25th against the run, 28th against the pass and ranked 30th on third downs. A pass rush that posted 46 sacks in 2010 and 48 sacks in 2011 had just 33 in 2012, posting one or no sacks in seven of 16 games. Defensive ends Jason Pierre-Paul and Osi Umenyiora, who had 25.5 sacks combined in 2011, had 12.5 last season. The lack of a pass rush contributed to a pass defense that yielded 60 plays of 20+ yards and 13 plays of 40+ yards. What went right : Offensively, the Giants ranked seventh in Football Outsiders' opponent-adjusted team DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average) metric, ranking fifth in rushing and 11th in passing. Ahmad Bradshaw played through chronic foot issues to lead the Giants with 1,015 yards , while Andre Brown had a team-high eight touchdowns before landed on injured reserve in late November. Brown landing on IR and Bradshaw's injuries led to first-round pick David Wilson emerging from his fumble-caused exile to Tom Coughlin's doghouse to carry the ball 43 times for 285 yards and three touchdowns in the final month of the regular season. Victor Cruz topped 80 receptions and 1,000 yards for a second consecutive season and set a career-high with 10 touchdown grabs. The Giants also got a productive season out of tight end Martellus Bennett, who had 55 receptions for 626 yards and five touchdowns to go along with some high-quality blocking in the run game. The Giants offensive line allowed a league-low 20 sacks in 2012, finishing third in the Football Outsiders' "Adjusted Sack Rate" metric. The Giants ranked 10th in Football Outsiders' special teams DVOA metric and were the best in kick returns, where rookie running back Wilson averaged 26.9 yards per return and had a 97-yard kick return for a touchdown in the shellacking of the Saints. Coaching/front office changes : No changes to Tom Coughlin's coaching staff, but the front office did lose senior pro personnel analyst David Gettleman, who is now the general manager of the Carolina Panthers. Estimated 2013 cap space : $4.518 million
Tony Romo, quarterback, Dallas Cowboys : After throwing 13 interceptions in the first seven games of the season, Romo had been better with his ball security, throwing just three interceptions total during an eight-game stretch where the Cowboys went 5-3 and worked their way back into the playoff picture. Needing a win over the Washington Redskins on Sunday night to win an NFC East title, Romo threw interceptions on both of the Cowboys' first-quarter drives, both of which occurring inside Redskins' territory. "Good" Romo would shake those two picks off and play fairly well in the middle portion of the game, btu "Bad Romo" took over late in the fourth quarter. Trailing by three points with just over three minutes remaining and all three timeouts in their back pocket, Romo underthrew a pass to running back DeMarco Murray in the left flat, which was intercepted by linebacker Rob Jackson at the Cowboys' 27-yard line. The Redskins chewed up nearly two minutes of the game clock with a game-sealing touchdown drive, ending the Cowboys' season and raising questions about Romo's ability to win "the big one". Romo, who turns 33 in the offseason, is now 1-6 in "win or go home" games. Matt Schaub, quarterback, Houston Texans : Before the start of the regular season, the Texans showed their faith in Schaub by signing the veteran to a four-year, $62 million contract extension that contained over $25 million in guaranteed money. As the franchise prepares for its second trip to the playoffs, the biggest question mark on the roster is Schaub. Once 11-1 and cruising towards a first-round bye and home-field advantage throughout the AFC Playoffs, the Texans lost three of their last four games in 2012, a stretch of games where the offense scored just four touchdowns, one of which from the right arm of Schaub, who was intercepted twice in Sunday's 28-16 loss to the Indianapolis Colts, an "L" that ultimately knocked the Texans to the No. 3 seed in the AFC Playoffs. Mike Smith, head coach, Atlanta Falcons : Aside from finishing the 2012 regular season with a winning record within the NFC South, the Falcons had nothing to play for on Sunday after clinching the No. 1 seed in the NFC Playoffs in Week 16. Smith decided to not rest his starters and go for the win in the meaningless regular season finale. Not only would the Falcons lose 22-17, at home, to a Tampa Bay Buccaneers team that had lost five straight entering Sunday, cornerback Dunta Robinson suffered another head injury six plays into the game. Robinson's early injury would not deter Smith from his goal, keeping the key players into the game for the duration of the game. (Matt Ryan played all 63 offensive snaps and Roddy White, who has been hampered by a knee injury, played all but one snap on Sunday) In the fourth quarter, defensive end John Abraham, who is the Falcons' pass rush, suffered a left ankle injury and was carted off the field. Smith expects Robinson and Abraham to be fine for the divisional playoffs, but there was absolutely no reason for the 34-year-old Abraham to be on the field at that point of the game. These are the types of games you give players like Lawrence Sidbury - who had five snaps on special teams on Sunday - some playing time on defense, Coach. If Robinson and/or Abraham is less than 100 percent for the Divisional Playoffs game, and the Falcons are "one and done" in the playoffs for the fourth time in five seasons under Smith, fans in Atlanta will be second-guessing the most successful coach in franchise history.
LANDOVER, Md. (AP) -- On a night when rookies Robert Griffin III and Alfred Morris led the Washington Redskins to the top of the NFC East, team owner Dan Snyder sought out a long-suffering veteran during the postgame celebration.
Here's something new: The Washington Redskins are champions of the NFC East.
LANDOVER, Md. (AP) -- ''R-G-3!'' was all Redskins fans needed to chant when they wanted to express their love for Robert Griffin III. For the lesser-known rookie, they opted for his whole name: ''Alf-red Mor-ris!''

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