The Washington Commanders were able to pull a rabbit out of a football hat late Sunday afternoon with an amazing bag of magical tricks in the closing minutes of the game against Indianapolis.
The Washington Commanders extended their winning streak to three games with some amazing heroics in the final minutes of Sunday’s game at Lucas Oil Stadium. With this victory, the Burgundy and Gold is solidly in the hunt for a Wildcard playoff berth, but there are still nine games remaining in the 2022 season. After the Chicago victory, yours truly mentioned that the Commanders still had faint playoff hopes. Today, the hopes have increased to a better-than-average chance.
Welcome to our weekly analysis of the previous game. We’ll talk about the 17-16 win over the Colts with five positives, team grades, award four game balls, and we’ll have a prediction for next Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings. It’s nice to be talking about another win, but there are a few concerns. The team was 22 seconds from losing the game and the fans need to keep a positive, but cautious outlook in the coming weeks. Let’s jump right in!
5 positives for the Commanders vs the Colts
1. The first positive from Sunday is probably the most obvious – wide receiver Terry McLaurin. He didn’t score a touchdown in Sunday’s low scoring affair, but the former Ohio State star did have six catches for 113 yards and the biggest catch of all – a thirty-three yard gem to put the Commanders in position to win with less than thirty seconds to go. He is definitely our first positive.
2. The second positive from Sunday’s game is a play from linebacker Jamin Davis. Early in the fourth quarter, Indianapolis had a third and goal literally about six inches from the end zone. Davis tackled all-everything running back Jonathan Taylor for a three yard loss and the Colts had to settle for a field goal. That is a game winning defensive gem.
3. Let’s talk about Darrick Forrest because he is our third positive from Sunday’s victory. In his rookie season last year, the former Cincinnati Bearcat had very little impact, but this year is far different. He is quickly becoming a star safety in his second season. Late in the third quarter, Forrest blasted Taylor deep in Commanders’ territory and forced a key turnover. He has a knack for making big plays and big hits. Sunday was more of the same.
4. Antonio Gibson is the fourth positive. Whether it was scoring a touchdown early in the second quarter or hauling in key receptions, the third year running back continues to play solid football. Gibson had seven catches on seven targets for fifty-eight yards and added nineteen yards rushing.
5. Curtis Samuel continues to bounce back from his injuries in 2021 and had another solid performance on Sunday. The former Penn State star had fifty yards on three receptions and rushed the ball four times for twenty-nine yards. On the Commanders’ final possession, Samuel caught a fourth down, twelve yard pass deep in their own territory to keep the touchdown drive alive.
Grades for Commanders vs. Green Bay
- Quarterbacks – Grade: C-
- Running Backs – Grade: B
- Tight Ends – Grade: C
- Wide Receivers – Grade: A
- Offensive Line – Grade: B-
- Defensive Line – Grade: B
- Linebackers – Grade: B+
- Cornerbacks – Grade: C+
- Safeties – Grade: B-
- Special Teams – Grade: A-
- Coaches – Grade: B
Awarding four game balls to deserving Commanders
- The first game ball this week goes to none other than Terry McLaurin. Obviously, this is an easy choice to make.
- The second game ball is awarded to Jamin Davis. A few weeks ago, the coaching staff was calling him out due to poor play. What a difference from then until the present.
- The third game ball is awarded to Daron Payne. Late in the second quarter, Colts quarterback Sam Ehlinger fumbled the ball in the red zone and Payne alertly pounced on it. Yet, another key play that helped the Commanders to a one point victory.
- The fourth game ball is awarded to Taylor Heinicke. He had a difficult day, but his determination in the fourth quarter will add to the legendary status with many fans. He never stopped battling and led the team on two scoring drives in the last five minutes. On the day, Heinicke went 23-31, 279 yards, a passing touchdown, a rushing touchdown, and an interception.
- Honorable Mention – Antonio Gibson, Jonathan Allen, Trai Turner, Joey Slye, Curtis Samuel, Darrick Forrest, Kamren Curl, Casey Toohill, and Tress Way.
Commanders Next Game Prediction, Final Thoughts
The Commanders return home to FedEx Field next Sunday for a home game against the Minnesota Vikings and old friend Kirk Cousins. Can the Burgundy and Gold make it four in a row?
Vikings 31 Commanders 19
KJ Record: 3-5
Joey Slye quietly had a perfect day against the Colts. He connected on his only field goal attempt (28 yards), made both of the extra point attempts, and each of his four kickoffs were touchbacks.
In other news, the 21 day window for Chase Young’s return is set to begin this week.The Jim Irsay-Dan Snyder “feud” took a huge backseat on Sunday, but the fireworks will continue.
We’ll return after the Vikings game. See you as we go along.