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Fantasy Football: NFC East Breakout Candidates

Kerry gives his pick for the best 2023 fantasy football breakout from each team in the NFC East.

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - JANUARY 15: Isaiah Hodgins #18 of the New York Giants reacts after catching a pass for a first down during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings in the NFC Wild Card playoff game at U.S. Bank Stadium on January 15, 2023 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys: WR Brandin Cooks 

A so-so contributor on a miserable Houston Texans squad in 2022, Brandin Cooks arrives in Arlington nearly assured of being the WR2 in the high-flying Cowboy offense. This is more of a re-breakout, as Cooks has had productive fantasy seasons in the past, but he is flying under the radar a bit heading into 2023. He should see plenty of volume from Dak Prescott and return to levels seen in his previous seasons.  

New York Giants: WR Isaiah Hodgins

Someone has to catch the ball in New York, right? While TE Darren Waller could end up being the favorite target of Daniel Jones, Isaiah Hodgins looks like the best-positioned perimeter threat for the Giants’ offense. While there are plenty of other receivers in New York, they are mostly smaller slot options, while the 6’4″ Hodgins is a prototypical outside receiver. He could bring some great late-round value in drafts. 

Philadelphia Eagles: RB D’Andre Swift 

Having lost Miles Sanders in free agency, the Eagles acquired running backs D’Andre Swift and Rashaad Penny to re-tool their lethal running game, and while they will likely operate with a committee approach to the position, Swift should get the first crack at being the lead back. A low-risk, high-reward proposition, Swift will have plenty of value regardless of rotation due to the Eagles’ efficiency in the red zone and his receiving skillset. If he gets the bulk of the carries and stays healthy, the sky is the limit for the former 35th-overall pick.

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Washington Commanders: QB Sam Howell

Optimism is running rampant in the nation’s capital. The Commanders have a new owner, a new OC in Eric Bieniemy, and what appears to be a new starting QB in Sam Howell. Receiving the first team reps this offseason and in the Commanders’ first preseason game, Howell has plenty of weapons to work with in an offensive system that loves to throw it around. If Howell holds onto the starting job, he could put up some unexpectedly positive fantasy numbers, as the second-year player out of North Carolina has rushing ability as well as a big arm.