Commanders 2023 midseason awards and superlatives

Who came out on top?

Sam Howell
Sam Howell / Lauren Leigh Bacho/GettyImages
4 of 6

Commanders 2023 midseason awards: Defensive Player of the Year

  • Kamren Curl - Safety

Just pay the man already.

Kamren Curl was a seventh-round gem for the now-Washington Commanders and continues to pace the defense. He has gone 350 coverage snaps without allowing a touchdown in 2023, per Pro Football Focus. This represents a good indicator of the improvements he's made in this critical area since joining the team out of Arkansas.

Curl leads the Commanders in tackles and has the second-most among safeties around the league. He is also one of the top-rated players at his position using advanced analytics and has far surpassed his contract value according to Over the Cap.

The defensive back is currently playing at a $9 million-plus valuation while only going a little more than $3 million on the salary cap. This has been a bargain for the Commanders up to now, but that is about to change with Curl's contract up for renewal next spring.

Washington has looked to reward key contributors they drafted with new deals aside from the odd few. Of all the free agents who could get new contracts when the time comes, Curl should be the team's biggest priority given his ever-growing emergence.

Letting Curl leave is not an option for the Commanders. Something that should be recognized by Josh Harris' ownership group whether a new coaching regime is installed or not.