The Washington Commanders are currently resting up on their bye week. It’s insane to think they played 13 games before getting their one-week break. The bye week carousel started way back in Week 6. While a late bye typically isn’t ideal, it comes at a perfect time with Washington coming off consecutive shaky performances.
They’re 6-1-1 in their last eight games, but they could’ve easily lost to both the Falcons if not for Daron Payne’s goal-line heroics, and Giants if not for Jon Feliciano’s boneheaded unsportsmanlike conduct penalty with New York approaching field goal range with a chance to go up 23-13 late in the fourth quarter.
Luckily, the Commanders avoided disaster in both contests. Their playoff hopes are still alive and well, and a win over the Giants in Week 15 would put them in a great position with three games left on the schedule.
Since that clash is two weeks away, let’s assess Washington’s performance by highlighting the team’s highest-graded players from PFF after 13 games.
Who are the Commanders’ highest-graded players from PFF this season?
The Commanders’ highest-graded defenders are as follows:
- Montez Sweat: 87.3 player grade, 81.3 run-defense grade
- Kam Curl: 85.0 player grade, 85.3 run-defense grade
- Jonathan Allen: 81.7 player grade, 86.4 pass-rush grade
- Darrick Forrest: 75.1 player grade, 79.4 coverage grade
- Kendall Fuller: 69.3 player grade, 67.3 coverage grade
It’s downright shocking Daron Payne isn’t included among these players. The world-beater lineman owns just a 59.2 player grade and 71.0 pass-rush grade despite leading Washington in sacks (8.5) and tackles for loss (15), while ranking third in QB hits (15) and pressures (36) and first in run stops (36).
Let’s take a look at Washington’s highest-graded offensive players.
- Brian Robinson Jr.: 86.4 player grade
- Terry McLaurin: 80.1 player grade
- Antonio Gibson: 78.2 player grade
- Curtis Samuel: 71.4 player grade
It’s admittedly a little stunning McLaurin isn’t the highest-graded offensive weapons since everything he touches turns to gold, but Robinson’s been an absolute menace in terms of rushing yards after contact, missed tackles forced, and first downs accounted for.
Jahan Dotson likely would’ve made the cut if he didn’t suffer a hamstring injury, but it’s pretty telling a quarterback didn’t sniff the list.
How about the offensive line? Here goes …
- Charles Leno: 75.9 player grade, 85.3 pass-blocking grade
- Sam Cosmi (8 games): 77.0 player grade, 78.6 run-blocking grade
- Cornelius Lucas: 65.6 player grade, 67.8 run-blocking grade
- Trai Turner: 62.1 player grade, 65.1 pass-blocking grade
- Andrew Norwell: 58.7 player grade, 60.4 run-blocking grade
No surprises here. Leno’s been a bookend left tackle for the second straight season, allowing 27 pressures, five sacks and six QB hits. The rest of the line, however, has been underwhelming, and further underlines the notion that Washington must revamp the unit in the offseason, especially along the interior.
The offense and defense, meanwhile, are in great hands. If only they had a quarterback to maximize their playoff potential.