The NFC East title race will come down to the wire, as the Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles enter Week 18 of the 2023 season with identical 11-5 records. The winner of the division will host a playoff game as either the second or third seed in the conference, while the loser will play on the road against the fourth seed, which will be the winner of the NFC South. Here are the scenarios for both teams to clinch the NFC East crown.
The Cowboys have the edge over the Eagles, as they own the head-to-head tiebreaker after splitting the season series 1-1 and with both teams having identical 4-1 records against their division rivals. The Cowboys also have a better record against common opponents (8-4 vs. 7-5) and within the conference (8-3 vs. 7-4). Therefore, the Cowboys will clinch the division with a win over the Washington Commanders on Sunday, regardless of what the Eagles do. The Cowboys can also clinch with a loss, if the Eagles also lose to the New York Giants.
The Cowboys have had historical success against the Commanders. They have an overall 77-48-2 record against them including winning four of the past five games in the rivalry. Dallas took care of business rather easily in the Week 12 matchup between the two teams 45-10. It is difficult to imagine the Cowboys drop this one, but Washington did pull off the upset in Week 18 of last year.
The Eagles need some help from their division rivals, as they cannot win the division on their own. The Eagles must beat the Giants on Sunday, and hope that the Commanders upset the Cowboys. The Eagles have no chance of winning the division if they lose to the Giants, even if the Cowboys also lose.
The Eagles just edge the Giants 93-87-2 in their overall history, but Philadelphia has had remarkable success against New York in recent years. The Eagles have won five straight in the rivalry including last year's divisional playoff game. Since 2008, the Eagles have won 26 of the last 32 matchups between the two northeast rivals. Philly narrowly defeated the Giants on Christmas Day this year, but should take of business. However, all eyes will be on the Cowboys vs Commanders game to see who ultimately takes the NFC East.
Additionally, it is worth noting there has not been a repeat winner of the NFC East since the Eagles did it over two decades ago.
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