Can the Commanders count on Sam Howell?
Perhaps the biggest factor above all else standing in the Washington Commanders' way of offensive efficiency is the quarterback spot. This is football's most important position for a reason, which means the onus is squarely on the shoulders of Sam Howell to spearhead Eric Bieniemy's unit to bigger and better things in 2023.
Howell looked like a promising player during his one career start against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 18. Trusting him with a full 17-game slate is a trip into the unknown for all involved, but Ron Rivera seems confident this can bring more from the former fifth-round selection if everything goes well during preparations.
Everything is seemingly set up to drop Howell in and take off. The Commanders have an abundance of wide receiver talent, a one-two punch at running back with Brian Robinson Jr. and Antonio Gibson, an offensive line that should improve, and tight ends that have Bieniemy's supreme confidence for good measure.
Couple this with Bieniemy's proven credentials when it comes to developing quarterbacks, and there are no excuses. How the North Carolina product performs throughout camp will be telling and should give fans a broader indication of how far the Commanders can go with Howell leading the charge.
Howell's got a lot of jobs in his hands heading into the campaign. It's a sink or swim scenario Rivera's thrust upon the second-year-pro and how he copes is going to come with franchise-altering consequences one way or another.