3 Commanders who’ve gone missing at training camp
The Washington Commanders will break down the 2022 version of training camp soon and shift their focus to the preseason. Thus far, there are three players that no one is talking about and each one will need to quickly step forward if they hope to make any kind of impact this season.
NFL players who find themselves on the roster bubble each summer typically live day to day knowing that they need to put forth their best efforts in every practice and preseason game. Many veterans and rookies understand the daily grind, but very few will make it beyond that final roster cut.
Also, some players that are fully expecting to be one of the 53 chosen in early September can suddenly face the harsh reality of being a roster casualty. This series of events plays out each summer and it is never easy for the players or teams to live out this nightmare. It’s also a part of life in the NFL.
That brings to mind three specific players that have generated little to no interest this summer from the media, fans, and analysts. Even content writers like yours truly tend to forget about certain athletes, but it is not done with malice or purposeful indifference. It is quite the opposite, to be honest, but there is a reason why all of this is happening.
Today, we will focus on these three Commanders that seem to be missing from daily reports from the team and the local media. All three are veterans and each one is probably on the roster bubble for now. Let’s take a look at what all three can do to change their fortunes by the time September rolls around.
3 Commanders who’ve gone invisible at training camp
Offensive tackle/guard Saahdiq Charles has been hobbled by various injuries since he was drafted in the fourth round of the 2020 NFL draft. For most of training camp thus far, he has been on the side field doing individual drills or not participating at all.
Will the coaches place him on the PUP list or short-term IR status to start the season? How much time can the Washington Commanders afford to give Charles? Can he ever regain his full football health and be reliably capable of contributing to the success of this team? Time may not be on the side of Saahdiq Charles.
Jonathan Williams came out of nowhere late in the season and put together a couple of impressive games down the stretch. It earned him the respect of players and coaches alike, but can he carry that momentum into the preseason and a coveted place on the roster a few weeks from now?
As a journeyman running back in the NFL, Williams has played for five different teams and has spent most of his time on practice squads. His solid production late last year came as a nice surprise to fans of the Burgundy and Gold, but can he duplicate that success in 2022?
Williams is all but obscured by the likes of Antonio Gibson, Brian Robinson, and Jaret Patterson thus far in training camp. For now, it looks as if the former Arkansas Razorback will be looking for another team or be placed on the practice squad in a few weeks.
Jeremy Reaves went undrafted in 2018, but he signed with Philadelphia as an undrafted free agent. He was released late in the summer and the Commanders quickly scooped Reaves up and added him to the practice squad. Reaves was activated to the roster late in the season and this is a recurring process each year.
Year after year, Reaves typically makes little to no impact in the preseason and is added to the practice squad. Late in the season, he is added to the roster. Rinse and repeat every twelve months. Guess what? It looks as if history is ready to repeat itself once again. Reaves is all but missing in this training camp and with the emergence of rookie safety Percy Butler and second year player Darrick Forrest. Reaves is likely to duplicate his past. Washington media icon Rick Snider seems to think that Reaves will take that familiar path once again in 2022.
It’s possible that his time in a Washington Commanders uniform is coming to an end, but the former South Alabama standout simply has a knack for his enduring persistence. Can we just “fast forward” to the late season version of Jeremy Reaves?
Saahdiq Charles, Jonathan Williams, and Jeremy Reaves are likely to take divergent paths to start the 2022 season. The coaches continue to be supportive of Charles and while he is not necessarily a roster lock, the former LSU standout adds quality depth along the offensive line.
Jonathan Williams faces longer odds. His direct competition is Jaret Patterson and the battle is favoring the latter at this juncture. Williams will need to have a solid impact in the preseason games, but his odds to make the final roster cut continues to become a steep, rising mountain. Look for Patterson to hold serve.
Jeremy Reaves will need to make his case in the preseason games, but the numbers are not in his favor. He could be a practice squad candidate or the team could decide to move on from him altogether. However, Reaves could continue his unofficial policy of being signed to the roster late in the season. The Washington Commanders would probably recommend that you don’t bet against it.
Yours truly will be busy this month with more analysis, observations, and predictions. See you as we go along.