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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Commanders need more from Emmanuel Forbes

Emmanuel Forbes moonlighting as a returner doesn't have to spell doom for his career. It could show the Washington Commanders' commitment to getting a premium draft pick involved and making the most of his run-after-catch skills.

Certainly, Forbes didn't look out of place when Nicki Jhabvala of The Washington Post captured this footage of him working as a returner.

This could be a good fit for a defensive back who set the FBS record for pick-sixes. Forbes knows how to thrive as a runner in traffic.

That's the positive interpretation of Forbes' potential new role. A more negative, but perhaps realistic, view is the Commanders finding different ways to use the cornerback is the start of a steady and inevitable decline for a player who lacks the muscle and tenacity to play corner in Dan Quinn and defensive coordinator Joe Whitt Jr.'s defense.

Forbes has to shake the stigma of being bullied by receivers like A.J. Brown. He's been more willing to jam wideouts at practice, but rookie Mike Sainristil is further along as a physical force.

The same is true of incumbent Benjamin St-Juste, along with veteran arrivals Michael Davis and Noah Igbinoghene. Quinn liked to leave his corners on an island when calling defenses for the Seattle Seahawks and Dallas Cowboys. Expect the same trend to continue in Washington.

That approach demands cover men being able handle one-on-one scraps on the perimeter and between the numbers. Forbes has a ways to go to prove he's added enough of a necessary rougher edge to his game.

Like Forbes, another member of the defense could be overtaken in a suddenly crowded rotation.