“It’s tough whenever you have a young [guy] like that go down so early in the season,” defensive sort out Jonathan Allen stated of Mathis. “It’s unfortunate. … We’re going to be fine. We’ve been through this before. We have players who are going to step up and play well. … I feel bad for him having to go out so early in his career.”
Mathis’s harm, coupled with Allen’s groin harm, prompted the Commanders to hunt a reinforcement. On Monday afternoon, they signed Donovan Jeter, a first-year defensive sort out out of Michigan who stands 6-foot-3, 325 kilos and also can contribute on particular groups.
However on Sunday, the crew needed to get inventive in the way it compensated for Mathis’s exit. Allen performed 54 of the crew’s 70 defensive snaps towards Jacksonville, greater than he usually does. Late within the recreation, he exited with the groin harm, and he stated he’s “feeling good” and underwent an MRI Monday morning as “more of a precaution.”
The Commanders additionally used defensive finish Efe Obada inside because the three-technique (aligned on the skin shoulder of an offensive guard) and as soon as because the one-technique (aligned on the skin shoulder of the middle).
“That’s his versatility, and that’s really his worth for us,” Rivera stated. “That’s where you find value in players like that, that can switch positions.”
Hail or Fail: Quick begin, massive end assist Commanders overcome three turnovers
After watching the movie of the Commanders’ 28-22 win over the Jaguars, Rivera stated he observed the advantages of the crew’s versatility throughout the board, be it the D-line and secondary, the place the excellence between a security and cornerback is commonly blurred, the tight ends who’ve but to totally present their potential or the receiving corps.
The Commanders performed to their assorted talent set, and although the sport was affected by errors and three turnovers, it served because the closest look but at what Washington’s offense might be with offensive coordinator Scott Turner.
“As those young [tight ends] continue to develop, that’s going to be a pretty good position for us, I believe,” Rivera stated. “And the running back position, when Brian [Robinson Jr.] returns, is going to be a pretty good position for us. And we already know the wide receiver position is solid. So we have an opportunity to continue to work and spread the ball.”
Wentz focused 10 move catchers Sunday — seven caught passes — and Washington adopted a recreation plan that included many new performs and created confusion for the Jaguars’ protection. On the Commanders’ first third down try of the sport, they aligned 4 gamers — Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel, J.D. McKissic and Jahan Dotson — in a bunch formation on the left facet, and Thomas was alone on the correct facet. On the snap, the 4 on the left took off on completely different routes, forcing Jacksonville’s protection to account for all of them in its delicate zone. Wentz hit Samuel on a dig route, and the receiver picked up practically 9 extra yards after the catch.
Wentz later linked with operating again Antonio Gibson on a put up path to arrange the crew’s second landing. He additionally discovered McLaurin for a 49-yard rating on a go route and commenced to construct a rapport with Thomas, who had three receptions for 45 yards.
Rivera believes Washington’s offense can and must be much more explosive. First it has to iron out the lingering errors — errors that almost price the crew Sunday.
Wentz threw interceptions on consecutive performs to start out the fourth quarter, the second of which the Jaguars was a rating that expanded their result in 22-14.
Rivera stated the primary interception was due partially to Wentz holding the ball too lengthy earlier than throwing to Dotson on an out route. Jacksonville cornerback Tyson Campbell jumped the route and picked it off. The second interception was a display screen move through which Travon Walker, the highest choice on this 12 months’s draft, turned a mistake into an enormous play.
“It looked like the defender was actually in the wrong crease,” Rivera stated. “ … But he came underneath and made a hell of a play. Maybe if Carson sees him coming, he throws it into the ground as opposed to throwing it, trying to throw it to the back.”
Rivera added: “It’s one of those things you tell him, ‘Hey, if you’re going to hang on the guy, throw the ball to him. If not, you’ve got to go a little bit quicker through your progression.’ ”
In response to Subsequent Gen Stats, Wentz’s common time to throw was 3.14 seconds, the second-longest within the league by Sunday’s video games. (Chicago’s Justin Fields averaged 3.27 seconds towards the 49ers.)
Rivera stated the crew will proceed to regulate, particularly within the early a part of the season. As a result of starters usually play 20 or fewer snaps in preseason, and since Washington didn’t maintain joint coaching camp practices, their stay reps towards different groups have been restricted. As well as, the Commanders tweaked their methods to raised match their personnel. On protection, the crew ran extra stunts and rush video games up entrance to get extra stress on the quarterback whereas nonetheless solely dashing 4.
Coming off a profession 12 months, Commanders’ Jonathan Allen is considering even greater
“I feel like we were rushing four as one, and I feel like last year and the previous years we really got away from that,” Allen stated. “It was more four one-on-ones, as opposed to us working together and playing well together.”
Though Allen was typically happy with the protection’s displaying, he got here away dissatisfied by the way it performed towards the run. The Jaguars totaled 123 dashing yards (averaging 6.8 per carry) and a dashing landing and picked up chunk performs on the bottom that Allen felt had been preventable. Travis Etienne had a 27-yard run within the fourth, and James Robinson added a 22-yarder.
“You just want to be more consistent,” Allen stated “You want to have more discipline in your gap control. It wasn’t terrible at all, but from my point of view, any time you give up a run of 10, 15 yards, that’s something you wish you can have back. So there’s definitely room for improvement.”