Washington Football Team: 3 key matchups to watch in Week 2

Washington RB Antonio Gibson (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Washington RB Antonio Gibson (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /
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Week 1 vs Chargers (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

1. Charles Leno vs Leonard Williams

Let’s start by saying that we aren’t singling out Charles Leno. The entirety of Washington’s offensive line — kind of like the defensive line, too — was shockingly bullied against the Chargers.

However, Leno will have extra motivation after his blown assignment led to the hit that injured Ryan Fitzpatrick. The 38-year-old QB suffered a hip subluxation on the play and will miss 6-8 weeks on injured reserve.

Unfortunately for Leno, his task won’t get any easier on Thursday night, as he’ll go up against Giants edge rusher Leonard Williams, who enjoyed the finest season of his career in 2020, logging 11.5 sacks, 30 QB hits and 42 pressures.

Though Williams didn’t record a sack in Week 1, he made his presence felt against Denver’s offensive line on Sunday. Over 51 snaps, he managed three tackles (one for loss) and an impressive two QB hits.

Leno performed well vs the Chargers outside of his one lapse in concentration. Yes, it was a monster gaffe, but if he cleans up his act and turns in a complete performance against Williams, that would be huge for Taylor Heinicke. After all, a quarterback with a protected blindside is a confident quarterback, and we all know how much moxie Heinicke oozes has when he’s in a groove.