5 starters Commanders GM Adam Peters must find in the 2024 NFL Draft

The pressure is on...
Adam Peters
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Commanders must find a wide receiver

Jahan Dotson’s subpar 2023 season is a cause for great concern. Whether his performance was due to skill, scheme, or some other unknown reason scarcely matters. He was supposed to emerge as a potent complement to Terry McLaurin and didn’t. His reclamation is essential in 2024.

Even if Dotson has a strong bounce-back year, the Washington Commanders need another weapon at wide receiver, either in the slot or lining up opposite McLaurin at the Z position. This is the role that Curtis Samuel filled last season when he was the second-best wideout on the team.

Washington will likely be running three-wideouts packages frequently in 2024. As the roster stands now, either Jamison Crowder or Olamide Zaccheus would be playing this role. Both are serviceable veterans but neither will scare a defense.

If all goes to plan, Dotson will play well this year. Crowder, Zaccheus, and a youngster like Mitchell Tinsley provide quality depth, and a rookie makes an impact as the No. 3 option.

It might be a small, lightning-fast slot player like Arizona’s Jacob Cowing or a giant target like Florida State’s Johnny Wilson. It might be anyone in between. Fortunately, this is a deep draft for receivers and the Commanders should be taking one somewhere in the middle rounds.

Commanders must find a left tackle

The offensive line was a weak link in 2023. Adam Peters has begun his rebuild by signing a couple of young veterans to start in the middle. Tyler Biadasz will play center and Nick Allegretti will get a long look at left guard. They will be replacing Nick Gates and Saahdiq Charles.

Peters also released veteran left tackle Charles Leno Jr., who had manned that crucial spot since 2021 and had been Washington’s steadiest lineman during that time. Another veteran, Cornelius Lucas, is currently penciled in to assume the starting job.

Lucas has done this before. In 2020, his insertion into the lineup in place of the ineffective Geron Christian helped turn the season around. But that was four years ago. He will be 33 years old when the 2024 season begins and his mobility has never been great. He remains an adequate pass blocker on the left side, but he will struggle with speed and will limit the running game if he has to play a lot. 

Behind him, Trent Scott is a journeyman depth piece. Everyone else is young and utterly unproven.

The Commanders need a quality, young left tackle almost as much as it needs a quarterback. Fortunately, as with receivers, there are a lot of talented prospects at offensive tackle in this year’s draft. Prospects like Tyler Guyton and Jordan Morgan could well be on the board when Washington picks in the second round.