Commanders News: Sam Howell, Jonathan Allen, Jeremy Reaves and power rankings

Looking closer at the latest Commanders news and rumors from around the media.
Jeremy Reaves
Jeremy Reaves / Brent Skeen-USA TODAY Sports
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Commanders DT Jonathan Allen's confidence

Seeing the Washington Commanders' defense struggling through five weeks is surprising and concerning in equal measure. This unit has the talent to become one of the league's best in 2023, but they've failed to meet lofty expectations as yet and pressure is mounting on defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio as a result.

Del Rio is sticking around, for now at least. But it's imperative every single defensive player takes a good long look in the mirror and shows some fight heading into Week 6 against the Atlanta Falcons and their vaunted rushing attack led by first-round sensation Bijan Robinson.

Things aren't looking too promising right now. However, defensive tackle Jonathan Allen is confident things can start trending upward based on his comments via USA Today Sports.

"In the NFL, one thing about defense is any plays you struggle with, you are going to see them again…so we have to get better at the things we are struggling with. We are definitely struggling right now, but we are going to improve. I need to play with more energy, more effort, better technique, go back to the fundamentals. Obviously, when things are going well, people want to see the passion. They want to see that we care. One thing I can guarantee without a shadow of a doubt is we care. Obviously, this one hurt for the fans. It hurts for the players and coaches as well. I understand the frustration, I’m not calling out anybody, not blaming anybody, but I promise you, this isn’t going to continue."

Jonathan Allen via USA Today Sports

Allen knows he has to do better. But his leadership will be integral to Washington getting out of a difficult slump and back to their usual standard.