Micah Parsons' recent comments should serve as a stark warning to the Washington Commanders offensive line ahead of their Week 18 clash.
The Washington Commanders have some extra incentive to finish their season on a high. Most fans are worrying about draft status given they currently possess the No. 2 overall selection. Ron Rivera's primary objective is to prevent the Dallas Cowboys from clinching the NFC East at FedEx Field this weekend.
Limiting the influence of star edge rusher Micah Parsons would go a long way to achieving this feat. The former first-round pick out Penn State's recent comments suggest he is willing to do whatever it takes to help the Cowboys triumph. He also has an individual milestone in mind heading into the regular-season finale.
Commanders cannot take Micah Parsons' comments lightly
Parsons sits on 13 sacks on the season. His career high is 13.5. Considering he's only attained 1.5 quarterback takedowns in the last five games, the two-time All-Pro hinted he may look to bend the rules a little in pursuit of achieving his career-high based on comments via John Machota from The Athletic.
"I know, I know. I literally just had this conversation with the guys today. At this point, it’s any means necessary. I might jump offsides twice this week. Something has to change. Something. It’s coming. It’s coming for sure."- Micah Parsons via X/Twitter
This might be a little tongue-in-cheek from Parsons. Openly flaunting the desire to cross the line isn't the smartest thing to do. But make no mistake, the Commanders' offensive line must be ready for anything.
Washington's protection has been abysmal for the most part this season. Quarterback Sam Howell is under constant duress whenever he steps back to pass. Some sacks are his doing, but the offensive line must carry the can for their underperformance. Ron Rivera's failure to prioritize this critical area of the field represents a glaring flaw in his four-year reign.
Parsons helped himself to 1.5 sacks and three quarterback hits versus the Commanders during their Thanksgiving Day annihilation. His additional motivation alone suggests something similar unless there's a miracle turnaround from the depleted unit before embarking on a long break.
Long-suffering Washington fans are stuck between a rock and a hard place in this one. Some want the Commanders to continue their torrid run of results to cement their chances of adding a top quarterback prospect such as Drake Maye or Caleb Williams in the 2024 NFL Draft. Some cannot remove their Cowboys hatred for long enough to make losing tolerable.
It's going to be fascinating to see how the Commanders approach the contest. It'll also be interesting to see which veterans participate looking at how things currently stand on the practice participation report. Of course, the Cowboys will have everyone out on the field, firing on all cylinders until a positive result is all but guaranteed.
Parsons is a big focal point. He's also got a reputation for talking big but backing it up with exceptional contributions. The higher the stakes, the better he performs.
This warning about wanting to finish strongly shouldn't be taken lightly. Whether the Commanders can do anything to prevent the seemingly inevitable is another matter.