If there’s a shock within the group, it’s Apke, a fifth-year defensive again whom Coach Ron Rivera described as a particular groups “ace.” Apke, who switched from cornerback to security on protection, has been coping with a calf damage and didn’t take part in a lot of camp.
As a result of Reyes and Armah have been positioned on the reserve record earlier than the ultimate discount to 53 gamers, their seasons are over until they attain damage settlements with the workforce. But when both participant reaches a settlement within the subsequent seven enterprise days, he can return later within the season, as soon as he misses three common season video games plus the variety of video games lined by his settlement. Neither participant would depend in opposition to the Commanders’ roster cap whereas on IR.
Reyes and Armah have been coping with hamstring accidents; Reyes performed two particular groups snaps within the Commanders’ preseason loss to the Carolina Panthers, and Armah was held out.
Rivera mentioned a number of components affect the choice on cuts: a participant’s talent set, his capacity to play a number of phases and the workforce’s wants elsewhere.
“Going through preseason, you look at guys for their value on special teams,” Rivera mentioned. “You look at their value for developmental, their ability to get better as a player. And then you look at their value for depth when you’re looking at the young guys. Some of the other battles are a little bit different, because you’re looking at the potential for starting, and that’s a pretty intense one.”
5 takeaways from the Commanders’ preseason loss to the Panthers
A participant’s worth may very well be depending on the assorted combos the workforce needs from sure place teams. It additionally will depend on the well being of different positions; including a fourth tight finish, say, means taking away a defensive lineman or perhaps a defensive again to maintain the roster at 53.
“Tight end will be a tremendous discussion; running back will be an unbelievable discussion,” Rivera mentioned. “Is it going to be nine, 10 or 11 DBs? But if you do that, what happens to your linebackers numbers? Is it seven, six or five? . . . We go through that exercise pretty often right now.”
Washington technically has 86 gamers on its roster, moderately than the allotted 85; as a result of defensive finish David Bada joined by the Worldwide Participant Pathway program, he doesn’t depend in opposition to the restrict. Groups must additional pare their rosters to a most of 80 by Aug. 23, then lower to 53 by Aug. 30.
After apply, Rivera gathered his gamers and coaches in a huddle and lit into them for about six minutes, showing animated and at occasions furious. When requested about it, Rivera refused to supply a lot element, saying, “I don’t like some of the things that happened.”
The Commanders went 12 intervals in pads, at occasions taking part in at a reside tempo and at different occasions taking part in at extra of a “thud” fashion, the place they don’t absolutely convey gamers to the bottom.
The trash-talking was typically heated, notably after Terry McLaurin caught a cross by leaping above the heads of cornerback Kendall Fuller and security Kam Curl. Fuller and McLaurin continued to speak by the subsequent play.
All through camp, Rivera has pressured limiting the trash discuss, so it doesn’t eat into apply time, and taking part in neatly, in order to not unnecessarily threat damage with hits or poor selections.
Close to the tip of workforce drills, competitors intensified, and an offensive lineman fell into the leg of quarterback Sam Howell. Touching the quarterback, not to mention bringing him to the bottom, is usually off limits in camp and apply.
Rivera threw in a shock for camp Tuesday. Working again Antonio Gibson labored with the third-string offense for a bit and helped out in punt protection on particular groups. It’s uncommon to see a beginning working again be part of particular groups in that capability, but Rivera brushed it off as not a giant deal.
“Antonio worked with the ones, the twos and the threes,” he mentioned. “He’s working with the special teams. Brian Robinson worked with the ones, the twos, and he’s worked with the threes as well. And he’s also worked with the special teams as well. So that’s what we’re doing. … We want to be able to use all our players.”
It’s believable to marvel if the transfer can also be associated to Gibson’s play Saturday. He fumbled within the first quarter of the preseason opener, which helped arrange the Panthers’ first landing. Gibson has a historical past of points with ball safety, final season main all backs with six fumbles.
Antonio Gibson is leaner, assured and able to assist carry Washington’s offense
Robinson, a rookie, changed Gibson for the next collection and scored on a one-yard run.
When requested if there’s a contest for the beginning job, Rivera mentioned, “There’s always been a competition for the positions on this team.”
Veteran guard and middle Wes Schweitzer went to the coaching tent early in apply and didn’t return to the sideline or area afterward. Rivera mentioned there’s “some concern” as a result of Schweitzer is coping with a hip damage. Schweitzer was despatched inside to start remedy.
Taking part in time in Kansas Metropolis
The Commanders have began to work by their plans for the second preseason sport, at Kansas Metropolis on Saturday. Rivera mentioned they “most certainly” are going to play their wholesome starters, however “how far they go is still up for debate.”
He mentioned some gamers, similar to middle Chase Roullier (ankle), can be on pitch counts, so as soon as they hit their allowed variety of reps, they’ll be pulled. Roullier is certainly one of a number of Commanders gamers recovering from accidents.