4 critical observations from the Commanders initial 53-man roster in 2023

Ron Rivera
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Commanders kick returner dilemma

After all the supposed competition and improvements to the Washington Commanders' kicking options, it's got more of a status quo feel to it than ever before. Those in power opted to keep faith with Dax Milne for the time being, which was met with dismay by some sections of the team's fanbase who've seen enough of the BYU product.

Whether Milne is good enough is up for debate. But the fact is that nobody seized their opportunity and took his job during camp or Washington's three preseason games made this outcome a foregone conclusion.

It looked for a long time as if Kazmeir Allen would be the guy hand-picked by the Commanders to take over return duties. Washington made him a high-priority signing once the 2023 NFL Draft came to a conclusion, but he faded at the most crucial time after a promising start.

Allen dropped two passes and fumbled a punt in the Commanders' preseason finale against the Cincinnati Bengals. That wasn't the best way to earn coaches' trust, so a potential spot on the practice squad now beckons for the one-time UCLA star provided he clears waivers.

What the Commanders can expect from Milne is anyone's guess. There's also a slight chance they find someone better on waivers before the campaign gets underway, which might not be that difficult when one considers the standard of previous performances.