4 Commanders players fighting for their jobs after 2024 minicamp

Emmanuel Forbes Jr. is among the group of four players who face a fight to keep their jobs with the Washington Commanders after 2024 minicamp.
Cornelius Lucas
Cornelius Lucas / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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Mandatory minicamp should have been the moment for a few fringe players and underperforming starters to remind the Washington Commanders of their value. Instead, four members of the roster face a fight to keep their jobs amid ongoing struggles and increased competition.

The quartet is headlined by cornerback Emmanuel Forbes Jr. Washington's first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft continues to appear overmatched physically, despite showing an increasing willingness for the rough and tumble of the game during OTAs.

Forbes needs to get on track because the Commanders aren't short of more physical players in his position. A plethora of options also spells trouble for a veteran wide receiver and versatile defensive lineman.

First, left tackle remains a problem spot. An incumbent starter isn't doing enough to make a case for the Commanders sticking with what they have at a vital spot on their offensive line.

Cornelius Lucas - Commanders OT

Counting on Cornelius Lucas to go from swing backup to competent starting left tackle is the biggest leap of faith the Washington Commanders' new regime is taking. That looks like a short-sighted gamble by head coach Dan Quinn, based on how the veteran fared at the team's mandatory minicamp.

It's not as though Lucas performed horribly during OTAs, but he didn't stand out. There haven't been glowing reports the 32-year-old is looking comfortable, even dominant, at the second-most important position on the team.

Perhaps dominance is too much to ask for from an 11-year veteran of five teams. The Commanders need a blue chip presence on the blindside to keep would-be franchise quarterback Jayden Daniels clean in the pocket.

Believing Lucas can be the guy is a bit of a stretch, even though he put some good things on tape last season. Like a solid showing during a win over the Atlanta Falcons in Week 6, per PFF Commanders.

Performances like this one aside, there's a reason third-round pick Brandon Coleman is also in the mix to start. The former TCU stalwart got first-team reps during practice on Wednesday, June 12, according to those in attendance.

Zach Selby from Washington's website also noted how second-year edge rusher Andre Jones Jr. had a couple of successes versus the blindside presence. It's early, but it's still concerning.

Things will remain fluid at left tackle, likely through training camp and preseason. But Lucas won't stick around if he can't distinguish himself next to an untested, mid-round rookie.

The pressure is also on a familiar wideout.