Every week, I will try to provide a brief overview of the Commanders' last game and their game coming up. I'll do it in the format of a sports segment I used to watch while I was younger on our local channel where they would break down the outlook into three categories: the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Let's dive in.
Despite the loss, there were a couple of good things to highlight from last week and things to look for this week. For example, the Commanders' offense went toe-to-toe with the NFC defending champions in a week where Washington was coming off one of their worst team performances in franchise history in their loss against Buffalo. Not only were they playing the defending NFC champions, they were playing them on the road. Everything had to be executed well to even have a chance.
This included an opening touchdown drive of 14 plays and 75 yards to start the game which Washington feels like they have rarely seen consistently for a while. Bieniemy's influence continues to show its benefits and potential with this offense. Sunday showed that he and Sam can also rely on Terry, as he got his season-high in targets, yards, and catches against the Eagles. I talked about this on our Commanders Capitol podcast with my co-host Lee.
The defensive line also showed some promise with a solid performance Sunday. They were able to sack the elusive Jalen Hurts three times and hit him eight times. This includes Chase Young who is now at 2.5 sacks on the season. The Commanders are top 10 in sacks and pressures and will look to continue this against a Chicago offensive line that is struggling.
Speaking of struggling offensive lines, the Washington offensive line has shown that it is still a work in progress as they looked like the inferior unit on Sunday. They gave up five sacks and nine QB hits. Granted, the Philadelphia Eagles have top 5 units on both sides of the trenches, but it did not look pretty for this Washington offensive line. Fortunately for the Commanders' offense, Sam has learned from his Week 3 beatdown against the Bills defense and is now getting the ball out quicker.
As I said, the silver lining here is that they went up against some fierce defensive fronts, including an underrated one with Gannon and the Cardinals. But this theory all goes to waste if the Commanders cannot look like a better unit against the Bears Thursday night. Chicago is ranked last in the league in sacks and missing two starting defensive backs. That ball needs to come out quickly and I expect a few big plays because of that.
The O-line needs to also play well for Brian Robinson Jr. to control the game and expand the play action. The only reason the offensive line did not fall into the "Ugly" performance category is because there was a unit that gave up bigger plays than them.
The defensive back unit wasn't an entire disappointment, but they gave up so many big plays that were very costly that I had no choice but to put them here. This includes rookie Emmanuel Forbes who got his welcome to the league moment on Sunday. People need to remember he is still a rookie who previously had three games under his belt and was going up against two Pro Bowl WRs catching passes from an MVP candidate QB. He will be fine. However, if we are going to let Forbes play freely, we need to account for our safeties to have his back especially early on if he is to match up against these Pro Bowl WRs early.
It's not just him. The defense has given up 30+ points in three consecutive games. The Commanders are ranked 29th in the NFL in points per game allowed, as they have allowed 30.0 points per game. They need a dominating performance Thursday night to get back on track to being the elite unit they are capable of becoming.
That does it for the Good, the Bad, and The Ugly: Week 5 edition. Stay tuned for the next edition coming up next week, and hopefully, I'll be writing about them in a winning performance. Also don't forget to tune into our weekly Commanders Capitol podcast and share with your friends.
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