3 biggest stars from Commanders’ camp practice at FedEx Field

(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) Curtis Samuel
(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) Curtis Samuel /

The Washington Commanders practiced in front of thousands of fans at FedEx Field Saturday night. The practice served as the most noteworthy day of training camp to date and fans really helped create a game-like atmosphere.

Of course, all eyes were on Carson Wentz, who’s endured a rocky start to his Commanders tenure largely due to inaccuracy. While Wentz was always expected to experience growing pains learning a new system, the quarterback’s accuracy has been wonky to say the least over the first two weeks of camp.

That was the theme of Saturday evening, too, unfortunately. Though Wentz wowed fans with some gorgeous deep passes, a worrying number of his throws during individual drills, 7-on-7s and 11-on-11s missed the mark.

With five weeks until Week 1, it would really ease fans’ minds if Wentz started delivering the ball with more accuracy. However, let’s focus on the positives from the practice because several players rose to the occasion.

These Commanders starred in front of fans at FedEx Field

Curtis Samuel

Talk about a sight for for sore eyes. Fans have grown increasingly worried with Samuel and Washington load-managing his practice time. We’d see him for one practice, he’d look elusive and lively, then sit out the next two sessions.

On Saturday, however, Samuel put on a show for the fan base, which has been itching to see him healthy and on the field. During red zone drills, Samuel beat Benjamin St-Juste on a corner route and hauled in the touchdown before falling out of bounds on one of Wentz’s best throws of the summer.


The score encapsulated every reason fans were excited by the Samuel signing last offseason. It’s been a frustrating start to camp for the dynamic WR, but perhaps we should all exercise a little more patience and trust that ramping up his conditioning is in his best interest even if it means he’s a part-time participant.

Marken Michel

Michel just appeared in our “4 Commanders in danger of getting cut” article, but he’s not going down without a fight.

The undisputed biggest star from Saturday’s practice, Michel made a plethora of impressive grabs, including two scores during red zone drills. His signature moment, however, came on a nearly-60-yard deep ball from Wentz. It was tight coverage, but Michel did well to box out rookie DB Christian Holmes and make the catch.

Michel still faces an uphill climb to make the 53-man roster, but he’s firmly in the discussion following Saturday’s performance. Fans would be hard-pressed to name a player on the so-called bottom of the depth chart who’s flashed more than the 29-year-old since the start of OTAs in the spring.

Joey Slye

How about some love for everyone’s favorite kicker?! We haven’t heard much regarding Washington’s special teams since the start of camp, but that’s standard.

On Saturday, Slye got the chance to show off his cannon of a right leg in front of fans and he did just that, converting on field goals of 49, 45, 41 and 33  yards. He also missed a 60-yarder, but it had the necessary distance, which gives a glimpse into how he makes Washington a threat to score points once they cross an opponent’s 40-yard line. Very few NFL teams have that luxury.

Next. 2 alarming developments from Day 9 of camp. dark