Free-agent edge rusher is the perfect piece for Commanders HC Dan Quinn

The Commanders are in desperate need of edge rushing help this offseason.

Josh Allen
Josh Allen / Morgan Tencza-USA TODAY Sports
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Could free-agent edge rusher Josh Allen be the perfect piece for new Washington Commanders head coach Dan Quinn?

It's no secret that the Washington Commanders will be looking to improve their pass-rushing options this offseason. After trading Montez Sweat and Chase Young before the deadline, anything less would be malpractice of the highest order.

The Commanders are in a healthier position than most right now. They have a bevy of high-end draft picks - six in the top 102 to be precise. Those in power also have the league's most salary-cap space, which stands at $83.54 million according to Spotrac.

Although general manager Adam Peters wants to build through the draft and supplement through free agency, it would be a surprise if the Commanders weren't big players when the legal tampering period officially begins. There also happens to be one edge defender potentially on the market who could become the team's Micah Parsons under new head coach Dan Quinn.

Commanders named as potential landing spot for Josh Allen

Dan Pizzuta from The 33rd Team named the Commanders as one potential fit for Josh Allen, who's looking for a big payday from the Jacksonville Jaguars or elsewhere. The writer believes if he ended up in Washington, it could provide Quinn with an athletic weapon similar to Parsons, whom he helped mold into an All-Pro during their time together on the Dallas Cowboys.

"No team needs pass rushers more than the Washington Commanders, who traded Montez Sweat and Chase Young at the deadline. The Commanders have holes to fill across the defense, but grabbing a top-of-the-market pass rusher would be at the top of their wish list. Dan Quinn, Washington’s new coach, just spent the past few years developing Micah Parsons as a pass rusher with the Dallas Cowboys. Allen won’t be Parsons, but he’s not as far away as expected. [Josh] Allen can move around the formation as Parsons did and use speed off the line to wreak havoc on opposing offenses. With Allen paired with Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne, Washington could instantly build back its dangerous defensive front that powered the defense for the past few seasons."

Dan Pizzuta, The 33rd Team

Allen is one of the league's most explosive edge rushers. He's notched 45 sacks in his first five NFL seasons. His 17.5 quarterback takedowns in 2023 couldn't have come at a better time for the player with a bumper new deal on the horizon.

If Allen tests the market, the Commanders should be among the first to pick up the phone. His athleticism makes him a potentially unique asset for Quinn and defensive coordinator Joe Whitt Jr. Similar to how they used Parsons, the former first-round pick out of Kentucky can be moved around to create mismatches. This versatility is something Washington hasn't benefitted from for a long time.

This would be a marquee acquisition and a major statement of intent from the new regime. However, some factors outside of their control could make this a non-starter.

The Jaguars could extend Allen despite having just $11.29 million in available salary-cap space currently. They also have the option of placing the franchise tag on him. This would prevent his representatives from speaking to other teams.

Peters must be ready to strike if Jacksonville lets Allen walk, which is genuinely hanging in the balance. The general manager will be forming a concise shortlist of options for different position groups. Some will work out, others won't. After Dan Syder's reign of terror, panicking through reactionary moves is simply not an option.

Will this lead the Commanders to Allen in free agency? Unlikely, but it couldn't be completely dismissed given their dire need for pass-rushing assistance.

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