Commanders fans will love Bleacher Report’s bold predictions for 2022
By Jerry Trotta
Following the release of the 2022 schedule, BetSided release their projected win totals for NFL teams. As expected, the Washington Commanders were (slightly) disrespected and ranked in the middle of the pack with 7.5 wins, with the over sitting at -125 (bet $125 to win $100) and the under at +105 (bet $100 to win $105).
Our main takeaway? Ron Rivera would be lucky to keep his job if the team doesn’t improve on its seven-win mark in 2020 and ’21.
It’s clear the media isn’t high on Carson Wentz or the make up of this roster, which is understandable given the lack of spotlight it’s had in terms of playoff appearances and primetime games over the last several years.
But what happened to daring to be bold? This already-talented roster is much-improved after free agency and the draft. Surely, some analyst or writer out there is bullish on what the Commanders can accomplish in 2022, no?
Indeed there is. Maurice Moton of Bleacher Report recently revealed nine bold predictions for the upcoming season. His final prediction?
The Commanders supplant the Cowboys as NFC East champs.
Don’t be shocked if the Commanders win the NFC East in 2022.
Moton starts by stating that Wentz is surrounded by more talent on the Commanders compared to last season with the Colts, which is true! Michael Pittman was really Wentz’s only reliable target. In Washington, Wentz has Terry McLaurin, Jahan Dotson, Curtis Samuel and Logan Thomas, among other pass-catchers.
"Terry McLaurin has led the Commanders in receiving yards for each of his three years in the league. The offense may feature another reliable wideout in rookie first-rounder Jahan Dotson, who generated a lot of buzz during the spring as he developed an immediate rapport with Wentz."
Moton went on to rave about the signings of Trai Turner and Andrew Norwell, who will replace Brandon Scherff at right guard and Ereck Flowers at left guard, respectively. While the interior offensive line will face questions early due to their unfamiliarity, the additions of Turner and Norwell should spark a rushing attack led by Antonio Gibson and third-round pick Brian Robinson.
Finally, Moton believes Washington’s defense, which was an abomination last campaign compared to its breakout 2020, will rebound in a big way.
"Led by a strong defensive line with Chase Young, who’s recovering from a torn ACL, Daron Payne, Jonathan Allen and Montez Sweat, the Commanders’ defensive unit can rediscover its stingy form from the 2020 campaign, ranking top-five in points and yards allowed again.The Commanders could finish No. 1 in a division that’s been in flux at the top for nearly two decades."
A top-five finish in both points and yards allowed might be a tall ask, but the Commanders have the talent to get it done. And the expected improvement on the offensive side of the ball will only make the defense’s job easier.
Another one of Moton’s bold predictions? The Cowboys miss the playoffs, citing the team’s weakened pass rush, the uncertainty of how Dak Prescott will perform without top target Amari Cooper, and the offensive line, which lost La’el Collins this offseason and suddenly has questions at left tackle with Tyron Smith missing 20 games over the last two years and clearly on the back nine of his career.
If Moton’s predictions come to fruition, the Commanders will sit atop the division at season’s end while the Cowboys will be dusting the cobwebs off of their golf clubs. Talk about a dream scenario, right? One can only hope.