Commanders backup QB
The common wisdom in the league this off-season has been that the Washington Commanders have among the weakest starting quarterbacks, but also boast one of the NFL's best backups. If you watched Jacoby Brissett play on Monday, you would have to seriously question that assumption.
Simply put, Brissett was awful. He missed – badly – on more than half of his throws. With a veteran player it is easy to write this off as one bad game and move on. But there is something else going on here, and the offensive coaches had better be cognizant of it.
Brissett is a big strong guy who can take hits and runs if needed. He has a good arm. When he can stand in the pocket – even in a collapsing pocket – he makes quality throws.
However, Brissett has never been very good at distributing while on the move. All of his really bad throws against the Baltimore Ravens came when he was moving.
You can scheme this a little bit, meaning the implementation of designed rollouts for Sam Howell. If Brissett has to come into the game, those plays should go in the garbage.
There will be times when Brissett has to move around a little bit. I think new quarterbacks coach Tavita Pritchard either has to figure out why his throws on the move are so inaccurate and correct it, or else instill in him the wisdom of simply not taking risks in such situations.
This, of course, is the exact opposite of what you would normally want from your quarterback. It is the opposite of what you would ask of Howell.
Usually, you want your quarterback’s eyes constantly downfield looking for the split-second opening that results in a big play. But if he can’t make that throw, don’t ask him to.
This isn’t a new thing for Brissett. From what I have seen, he has never been very accurate on the move. If he is going to have to play serious minutes, the game plan will have to acknowledge that reality.
The Commanders are making strides in the right direction. But they will be confronting assorted weaknesses throughout the season. Minimizing those weaknesses will have a major impact on how successful they can be.