4 Commanders role players on course for contract extensions in 2023
By Jerry Trotta
3 and 2. James Smith-Williams and Efe Obada
The Commanders have formed a platoon at defensive end while Chase Young is eased back following major knee surgery.
To say Efe Obada and James Smith-Williams have exceeded expectations in their respective roles would be an understatement. It definitely helps that they’re complemented by three potential Pro Bowlers in Jon Allen, Daron Payne and Montez Sweat, but Obada and Smith-Williams have made the most of their opportunities.
Another free agent who played for Ron Rivera in Carolina, Obada is tied for fourth on the Commanders with three sacks. He also has three tackles for loss, seven quarterback hits, 21 pressures, and 12 hurries.
Smith-Williams’ been no slouch, either, compiling two sacks and four tackles for loss. In fact, his 13 QB hits rank fourth on the team and are only three and four behind Payne and Allen, respectively, for third and second place.
The value of having quality edge rushers cannot be understated, and Smith-Williams and Obada have the versatility to kick inside on passing downs. Both players have performed well enough to re-up their contracts after the season.