Washington, DC—Poor quarterback play, a revolving door of coaches, and a series of behind-the-scenes problems, including a culture of sexual harassment on the upper management level made them the most talked-about team in the NFL.
Coming off a 7-10 season, Washington enters the NFL draft potentially in the market for a quarterback. Despite trading for Carson Wentz in the offseason, the Commanders could use either of their first two picks to select a young quarterback prospect, maybe Ole Miss Matt Corral in the second round.
The Commanders averaged 19.7 points per game. The offensive line pushed people off the ball but they lack enough explosive plays in the back half of the season. In the latter part of the season, the Commanders had problems with drop passes. The Commanders have to improve in four areas (Quarterback, Safety, Corner, and Wide Receiver).
Even though Heinicke was an upgrade over Alex Smith/Dwayne Haskins Jr./ Kyle Allen rotation, he did not look perform like a top-20 NFL quarterback. But his grit, determination, and toughness are what drew fans to him in the first place. It’s what brought his teammates to his defense whenever called upon. And it’ll be what lands him into another job in 2022 somewhere else if Washington doesn’t work out.
The Commanders only have three picks in the top 180, though, in part due to the Carson Wentz deal, including only one selection over a 140-pick stretch.
Landon Collins was used as a box linebacker, removing him from safety position against his wishes. The Commanders may choose to release him with three years left on his huge contract; he continued to be a liability in coverage. Kamren Curl, a seventh-round pick 2020, was in Washington on a one-year deal in 2021 and was part of the problem with the team’s coverage lapses. They need to find a safety that will compliment Curl in the back end of the defense. The Commanders have their eyes on S Percy Butler from Louisiana-Lafayette.
Kendal Fuller is an invaluable asset, capable of playing inside or outside corner. The rest of the unit was in shambles last year. Third-round rookie Benjamin St. Juste is a physical player, but was a late bloomer needs a lot more work on his press coverage before he’s a reliable pro player. William Jackson, signed to a three-year deal last year offseason, took some time to settle into the system and continued to struggle with inconsistency.
Beyond Terry McLaurin, the Commanders’ wideout rotation was in disarray. A groin injury severely limited Curtis Samuel last season, and while he was out, pending free agents Adam Humphries, DAndre Carter, and Cam Sims failed to make the grade. Rookies Dyami drafted in the third round and Dax Milne (seventh round) barely cracked the rotation. To compensate for the dismal performance of the group TE Logan Thomas and RB J.D.McKissic were used heavily in the passing game.
McLaurin is one of the league’s most promising young wideouts. The fourth-year receiver notched his second consecutive 1,000-yard season. Outside of that, though, Washington’s receiving corps has been lacking over the past few years — no other Commanders player exceeded 400 receiving yards in 2021. With McLaurin expected to hold out, so drafting Ohio State burner Chris Olave in the first round with their 11th pick makes sense.
Commanders Draft Picks 2022:
- Round 1, Pick 11: —
- Round 2, Pick No. 47: —
- Round 4, Pick No. 113: —
- Round 6, Pick No. 189: —
- Round 7, Pick No. 230: —
- Round 7, Pick No. 240: —