Washington Commanders showing signs of hope early in ’22 NFL campaign


Photo by Rick Osentoski/ AP.

Jacob Klassen, Sports Editor

 The Washington Commanders seem to have a solid young team early in the 2022 NFL season.

They had a pretty good draft, picking up a lot of offensive weapons in Sam Howell, Jahan Dotson, and Brian Robison. These were all good healthy players, except Brian Robinson, who on August 29, Robison was shot in the leg in an armed robbery.  Thankfully the shot missed all ligaments, tendons, and bones in the joint.

No massive injuries came up and with a good recovery, he will be back later in the season.

The first preseason game showed a pretty promising season, the Commanders had control over the whole game and just made a few very bad mistakes in turnovers that the Carolina Panthers progressed to win 23-21.

Carson Wentz started and went for 10/13 and 74 yards. Sam Howell got a chance and went 9/16 for 145 yards. Lastly, Taylor Heinicke played a drive and went 4/9, 21 yards, and an interception. Our defense held up well holding the Panther to under 300 total yards and had three sacks. 

In the second preseason game, we held up very well against the Chiefs, who have been a very strong team for over a couple of years now. Sam Howell went 10/18, 122 yards, and an interception, and Taylor Heinicke did a bit better this game going 9/12 for 83 yards and a touchdown.

The defense is who showed up the most this game, holding Patrick Mahomes to only 162 pass yards. This game shows great potential, but Washington just didn’t play well overall on 3rd downs, which can change the whole game.

Our offense went 3/10 on third downs and 0/1 on fourth, and our defense let up 9/15 on third downs. This is where we struggled last year and this team for sure needs to improve on this to do well this season. 

With the final preseason game, this is where they played the best. Although they lost 17-15 to the Ravens, they were in control the whole game, with Sam Howell throwing for 280 yards and a touchdown with zero interceptions it felt almost impossible for the offense not to thrive. But yet again, converting on third down was a huge problem this game, they went 6/16 on third down and 2/3 on fourth.

Not only did Howell throw for almost 300 yards but he also picked up 62 yards on his feet in 8 carries. The defense played very well also, they let up 302 passing yards, but they held a very run-heavy offense to only 21 yards on the ground. Not only did they do well yard-wise, but they also played extraordinary on third down, only letting the Ravens convert once out of eight times.

Overall as a team, we had 82 penalty yards which can change everything in a game, the past few games have been a big issue and it is just another thing that they will need to work on for this upcoming season. 

In Week One the Commanders beat the Jacksonville Jaguars 28-22 at home, this game showed much improvement overall. Carson Wentz threw 313 yards for 4 touchdowns and  2 interceptions. They did much better on 3rd down and went for 7/10, and held the Jags to 3/12  on offense with a goal-line stop.

Week Two saw the Commanders disappointedly lose to the Detroit Lions 36-27.

The Washington Commanders will host the Philadelphia Eagles in Week Three.