Thursday, September 21, 2023

Washington Commanders Week 3 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

Throughout the 2023 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Below you will find a Week 3 roundup for the Washington Commanders in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 12

Player: DE Montez Sweat
Current contract situation: Under contract through the 2023 season

Sweat and fellow end Chase Young will be free agents after the season. But Washington has made it clear the Commanders would like to extend Sweat, playing on his fifth-year option, at some point. Any movement toward an extension, though, was slowed by the ownership change with the group having more urgent matters to focus on. Sweat has been a terrific edge run defender, but his highest sack total is nine. However, through two games this season, Sweat has two sacks and two forced fumbles. He's learning from assistant line coach Ryan Kerrigan, the franchise's all-time sack leader. "RK has been helping him to finish at the top of the rush," said defensive line coach Jeff Zgonina. "He's doing a hell of a job doing it." -- John Keim -- Rank: 19

The Commanders are 2-0 for the first time in a dozen years. Coming back from down 18 on the road and going on a 32-6 scoring run are pretty positive signs; Sunday's win over Denver was far more impressive than the smaller comeback against the lesser Cardinals at home in Week 1. Washington has played better in the second halves of games than in the first. That pattern might work against Arizona and Denver, but will it stand up against the Bills in Week 3? What gives the Commanders a chance is the play of Sam Howell. Kid has some guts, doesn't he? After some empty series early, he was battered around, but Howell was dialed in down the stretch, confidently leading five scoring drives in the final 32 minutes.

CBS Sports -- Rank: 8

They are 2-0 after rallying to beat the Broncos. Sam Howell came up big to bring his team back, which is a good sign.

USA Today -- Rank: 23

Sam Howell is the first Washington quarterback to win his first three career starts in the Super Bowl era. That's included a pair of fourth-quarter comebacks in this season's 2-0 debut. Still, concerns remain about what's going on before the fourth quarter and the level of opposition those struggles are occurring against.

The Athletic -- Rank: 12

Maybe it's smoke. Maybe it's mirrors. Maybe it's playing Arizona and Denver. But it's not offense that has Washington undefeated. Running back Brian Robinson had 87 grueling yards and two touchdowns Sunday, so maybe it's a little bit of him.

FOX -- Rank: 17

This pass rush is going to keep the Commanders in a lot of games. If Sam Howell can step up and be an active part of the offense, as he was in Denver, then the ceiling for this team becomes appreciably higher. There's a huge opportunity to show exactly how legit they are on deck, as the Bills come to town for Week 3.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 17

Sam Howell has a long way to go as a quarterback. For starters, he holds the ball way too long. But he also has an innate playmaking ability. He brought the Commanders back from a 21-3 deficit with 299 yards passing. This 2-0 start hasn't been pretty for the Commanders but there are some positive signs.

PFT -- Rank: 15

Eric Bieniemy's star is rising.

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