4 Commanders draft needs after early free-agent moves in 2023

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Ron Rivera
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Ron Rivera /
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(Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports) Broderick Jones /

Commanders need a franchise LT

It didn’t take long for the Washington Commanders to begin their offensive line makeover once the legal tampering period began. The moves weren’t jaw-dropping by any stretch, but Nick Gates and Andrew Wylie provide versatility and genuine starting experience that should help in 2023.

However, there is one glaring thing missing.

A franchise left tackle.

Charles Leno Jr. is a capable swing presence. But for the Commanders’ offense to take that next leap under Eric Bieniemy, they need a blindside protector to build around for the next decade.

This is something they’ve been devoid of since the Trent Williams trade. And to be honest, it’s something that cannot go on for much long no matter if it’s Jacoby Brissett or Sam Howell manning things under center.

Washington has officially run out of decent options on the open market. Therefore, spending one of their first two selections in the 2023 NFL Draft on a promising left tackle looks like a foregone conclusion at this juncture.

Anything else is borderline malpractice and could lead to the same complications as fans witnessed in 2022. All it takes is one weak link on the protection to throw plans into tatters, which the Commanders cannot afford with so much on the line for Ron Rivera next season.

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