4 critical observations from final open Commanders 2023 training camp practice

Saturday's practice marked the end of fan involvement at Commanders' training camp.
Emmanuel Forbes
Emmanuel Forbes / Nick Cammett/GettyImages
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Commanders atmosphere shift

It was only fitting that the buzzing atmosphere continued to conclude the Washington Commanders' public training camp sessions. A bumper crowd descended on Ashburn to mark the occasion, which also saw the team giving out free ice cream and other goodies to those in attendance throughout.

Players spent considerable time signing everything from shirts to Bye Dan beer cans after practice. There is a real sense of belonging and community across the Commanders these days, which is a stark contrast to the sparse audiences and complete disillusionment that enveloped the franchise during the previous owner's 24-year reign of terror.

This feel-good factor might not seem like much, but the knock-on effect this might have cannot be ignored. The players look energized, head coach Ron Rivera is walking around with an extra spring in his step, and influential figures within the organization know exactly what their roles are under Josh Harris' ownership group.

Again, that hasn't always been the case. But this improved infrastructure might be enough to tip the scales in Washington's favor during a make-or-break campaign for many.

Having fans back in their numbers was a refreshing change of pace. They had good reasons for staying away, but it's clear their unrivaled passion for Commanders football never wavered.

Now, the important thing is giving them a product to be legitimately proud of.