5 overlooked storylines to watch at Commanders 2024 training camp

There are storylines aplenty for fans to watch.
Dominique Hampton
Dominique Hampton / Tom Hauck/GettyImages
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Dominique Hampton's early development

None of the Washington Commanders 2024 draft picks may have been a bigger surprise than Dominique Hampton. Johnny Newton in round two was unexpected but was seen as too good a prospect to pass up. The safety, however, had stayed below his projection.

Before the draft, he was seen as a late-round dart throw. That’s essentially what Washington did in the sixth round. The surprise was that they did not make that gamble at a position of need, like cornerback or offensive line.

The Commanders may not have the best safety room in the league. But with Jeremy Chinn, Darrick Forrest, Percy Butler, and Jeremy Reaves, as well as the versatile Quan Martin, the deep-end cupboard was not exactly barren.

I speculated initially that Dan Quinn may be seeing the second coming of Kam Chancellor in Hampton. He was an oversized, late-round draft pick for the Seattle Seahawks when the Commanders' new man at the helm developed him into a top-tier safety.

Chancellor could hit like a truck but had the speed and athleticism to perform in coverage. Early indications suggest Hampton might be that kind of player.

Washington probably has its starting safeties in place with Chinn playing in the box and Forrest occupying a deeper role. But the free-agent signing from the Carolina Panthers has been more effective throughout his career staying closer to the line of scrimmage in a hybrid linebacker-safety role.

Both Butler and Reaves could fill in as a traditional strong safety, but Hampton may surpass both rather quickly. If he takes to the role, it would allow Joe Whitt Jr. a great deal of flexibility in trying Chinn, and perhaps other defenders, in different positions.

Plenty of other questions are yet to be resolved. Will the team sign a veteran at left tackle and/or cornerback? Who is the kicker? Should we start buying our Brandon Aiyuk Commanders jerseys?

Those are major issues. But some of these smaller questions may turn out to be just as interesting, and just as important.