4 players the Commanders should hold off giving new deals in 2023

(Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports) Chase Young
(Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports) Chase Young /
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(Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports) Antonio Gibson /

Antonio Gibson – Commanders RB

Gaining more than 1,000 rushing yards and seven touchdowns in 2021 clearly didn’t impress the Washington Commanders all that much. The team moved quickly to select Brian Robinson Jr. in the third round last year, which left Antonio Gibson forced into rotational duties as part of a newfound multi-back approach.

This was surprising to a certain extent. But one cannot dispute the immense gifts Robinson has after overcoming significant adversity to make a large impression as a rookie.

Gibson had his moments, too. The Memphis product rushed for 546 yards and three touchdowns from 149 carries, but the clear shift towards Robinson means his future looks murkier than ever heading into the final year of his deal.

Paying running backs is a contentious issue around the league. Many succumb to injuries or decreases in performance levels soon after lucrative contracts get signed, so the Commanders would be wise to approach Gibson’s situation with extreme caution.

In all likelihood, Washington will wait it out and see how Gibson gets on when carries come his way. Even if they could reach career-low numbers if Robinson becomes the primary option as expected.