Biggest Position Battles Entering 2023 NFL Training Camp: NFC East Division

AP Photo/Nick Wass

Biggest Position Battles Entering 2023 NFL Training Camp: NFC East Division


Biggest Position Battles Entering 2023 NFL Training Camp: NFC East Division


AP Photo/Nick Wass

The month of May is almost over and June is right around the corner. With that, the time until training camp starts is counting down now. After free agency and the NFL Draft, each NFL team has one biggest training camp battle that stands out the most, and this series will highlight them! Starting today with the NFC North.


Dallas Cowboys: Tight End

Dalton Schultz left in free agency, and now there is a massive hole to fill at tight end. With the scarce options at receiver to begin with outside of CeeDee Lamb, having someone viable to take over that role at the tight end spot will be a must. To start, the team had Jake Ferguson and Peyton Hendershot who they added to the team during the 2022 NFL Draft. When Ferguson was on the field in 2022, he saw a 21.8% target share that turned into 19 receptions which went for 174 yards. With his 6’5, 250 pound frame, he provides Dak Prescott with a tight end that will box out defenders and win routinely in contested situations. Hendershot had 11 catches, including a 20-yard touchdown, showcasing his ability to stretch the field and provide quickness to the tight end position. Even with Hendershot and Ferguson doing well in limited roles, the team still drafted Luke Schoonmaker in the second round. Schoonmaker provides the vertical threat ability and had a 2022 season with 418 yards and uses his frame well to secure contested catches as well. Between the three, the Cowboys will have a large decision to make. 

Philadelphia Eagles: Safety

With C.J. Gardner-Johnson leaving in free agency for the Detroit Lions, the Eagles had his spot at safety to fill. They signed Terrell Edmunds who is coming off a season in which he allowed 24 receptions on 37 targets for 357 yards  while also making 17 run stops. During his years with the Steelers, Edmunds was dependable for them, and with his size, can match up with tight ends extremely well. Then the team went out and drafted Sydney Brown, though, and with Brown’s skills he can challenge for a starting role. Over the 2022 season, Brown allowed only 27 receptions on 46 targets for 342 yards, and one touchdown. Brown excels against the pass with his range to cover from sideline-to-sideline and, with his speed and recognition ability, comes downhill quickly to help against the run as well. Between Edmunds and Brown, the Eagles will have a battle on their hands for that starting safety spot next to Reed Blankenship. 


Washington Commanders: Center

After cutting Chase Roullier, the battle for the starting center spot became a bigger priority. With 10 starts in 2022 for the New York Giants, Nick Gates was signed by the Commanders and is the projected starter for the moment. Over last season, playing 413 snaps, Gates allowed just one sack and 12 total pressures. When run blocking, he does so with authority by finishing his blocks and maintaining great balance. When it comes to pass blocking, Gates gets anchored quickly and uses great hand placement to maintain leverage. Despite this, the Commanders added competition by drafting Ricky Stromberg. With pass blocking, Stromberg as well gets set quickly and has a strong grip that once he latches onto defenders, they have a difficult time trying to counter. The understanding of angles Stromberg has greatly helps him in run blocking, and his lateral agility helps him in this area as well. After allowing the ninth most pressures in 2022, the Commanders need to get the best five on the line out there, and that starts with the center spot. 


New York Giants: Wide Receiver

What was once a thin position group, now is filled with talent to the point of where it is going to be extremely competitive. Starting wise at the moment, it is projected to be Isaiah Hodgins, Darius Slayton, and Parris Campbell. Hodgins had a breakout second half of the season, accumulating 459 yards and five touchdowns over 42 receptions in 10 games. Slayton had 724 yards  and two touchdowns over 46 receptions, and Campbell, who is coming from the Indianapolis Colts, had 623 yards and three touchdowns over 91 receptions. Wan’Dale Robinson will be returning from injury, but before that, he had 227 yards and one touchdown over 23 receptions and provided a gadget player who could also be used in motion. Sterling Shepard is another option, but staying healthy is the main thing there. Then there is rookie Jalin Hyatt, who will add a downfield speedster to the offense. With his quick acceleration off the line, he put together a 1,267-yard, 15 touchdown season. Brian Daboll now has plenty of receivers to work with for his offensive scheme, which in return should open things up more for Daniel Jones, making this an important area to watch in training camp. 


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