Commanders News: Sam Howell, OT target, Ron Rivera and Martin Mayhew

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Martin Mayhew
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Martin Mayhew /
1 of 4

Which Washington Commanders’ news stories are causing debate as the fanbase continues to bask in the glory of life without Dan Snyder?

The Washington Commanders offseason program officially gets underway with voluntary workouts today. This is the opening stage of preparations for the 2023 season, which promises to be a landmark one for the franchise and the first under new ownership.

Dan Snyder’s acceptance of the $6.05 billion bid from Josh Harris’ group completely galvanized the fanbase on social media. But this is just one of many headlines currently surrounding the Commanders in recent days.

Among the latest stories include building around Sam Howell, a potential offensive tackle target at No. 16, Martin Mayhew’s ranking among other NFL general managers, and the increasing pressure on Ron Rivera to show improvements next season.

Let’s delve into each topic in more detail.

Story No. 1

(Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Howell /

Commanders to ‘build around’ Sam Howell

With a new ownership group potentially influencing personnel decisions, there is an obvious temptation to examine a daring trade-up for one of the better quarterback prospects in the 2023 NFL Draft. However, this is not a sentiment echoed by John Keim of ESPN, who stated the Washington Commanders plan to build around Sam Howell and see how things go next season.

"“They believe in quarterback Sam Howell enough that it’s unlikely they will trade up for a quarterback, especially not into the top 10. It’s also unlikely they’ll draft a quarterback in the first round, unless a top guy unexpectedly falls into their lap. They are reluctant to relinquish a lot of draft capital and would rather use that to build out the roster around Howell. If he fails, the organization can try again next year with a stronger squad around a new quarterback.”"

This seems like the most sensible strategy. But if Howell fluffs his lines in the face of such a fantastic opportunity, Ron Rivera is unlikely to be the one picking Washington’s next quarterback in 2024.