It wasn’t pretty, but the Washington Commanders are 1-0 for the first time in two years after they defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.
If the game’s script was any indication, Commanders fans are in for a rollercoaster of a season. To make a (very) long story short, Washington dominated the first half to the tune of a 14-3 halftime lead. The Jaguars punched back in the second half, but Ron Rivera’s side had just enough fight to get the job done.
You have to credit Carson Wentz for that, no? While it was ultimately his miss that he mopped up, isn’t there something to be said about how he responded after throwing interceptions (inexcusable ones, if I’m being honest) on back-to-back passes in the second half?
Another Wentz classic seemed to be in the makings: several misfires, moments of individual brilliance before coming up small in the clutch. He rewrote the script with two touchdown passes in the final 10 minutes, including the game-winer to Jahan Dotson with just over a minute left in regulation.
Fittingly, Ron Rivera presented Wentz with the Commanders’ game ball in a fiery speech that set the locker room ablaze. Check this out.
Ron Rivera fired up the Commanders locker room presenting Carson Wentz with the game ball after Sunday’s win.
It’s Sunday night and I suddenly have the urge to run a marathon. What a speech.
That goes for Rivera and Wentz. This isn’t the first time Rivera’s delivered a galvanizing postgame speech, but this is right up there with some of best.
Anyone notice the reaction when Rivera handed Wentz the rock? Seems like a solid dude who’s popular in the locker room. What a shocker!
This wasn’t the speech of a coach, nor reaction of teammates, that lack confidence in their quarterback. The Commanders are going to sink or swim with Wentz and he gave an imperfect but positive first impression in his debut.
At the end of the day, the Commanders acquired Wentz to expand their offense. They’re willing to live with the turnovers — Ron Rivera said as such speaking to reporters postgame — for that expansion. It’s a gamble, but it paid off Sunday.
The interceptions were every bit of ugly and accuracy eluded him on multiple occasions, but 27-of-41 for 313 yards and four touchdowns? When was the last time a Washington quarterback produced a stat line like that? For context, Taylor Heinicke managed two three-TD games and one game with 300 or more yards in 2021.
Wentz deserved the game ball and Rivera did an outstanding job laying out the carpet for his quarterback.
What a game and what a win.