Sam Howell's slow start
It was a slow start to the game from second-year quarterback Sam Howell. Perhaps the bye week added some extra rust after an extended period away from the practice field, but there was just something missing over a disappointing first half.
Howell looked hesitant in the pocket. The timing was off with his wide receivers. He was unfortunate not to throw another interception when attempting to get the football downfield during a two-minute drill.
This was not the confident Howell we'd been accustomed to seeing against high-octane offenses earlier in the campaign. There were some flashes of his impressive arm strength. Unfortunately for the Washington Commanders, these were fleeting as they went into the interval deservedly behind.
The statistics over the opening two quarters spoke for themselves. Howell's performance was shaky right out of the gate and things didn't get much better as the half progressed.
- 43.75 percent completion
- 52 passing yards
- 0 TDs
- 0 INTs
- 1 sack against
- 19 rushing yards
- 52.1 passer rating (ESPN)
Remarkably, the Commanders were only down 13-0 at the break despite their lack of offensive efficiency. This was thanks in no small part to Washington's defense. They created two turnovers and played relatively well overall versus a dynamic Los Angeles Rams attack.