Thursday, October 19, 2023

Washington Commanders Week 7 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 7 roundup for the Washington Commanders in our consensus 2023 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 21

Lesson learned: The secondary is holding them back.

Washington ranks ahead of only five teams in yards per pass attempt allowed (7.6), and the Commanders have allowed the most pass plays of 25 yards or more (16). This from a group that limited such gains in the second half of last season (11 in final 8 games) and added first-round corner Emmanuel Forbes and second-round safety/slot corner Jartavis Martin. However, Forbes, the Commanders' third corner, was benched after five games, and Martin has played just six snaps from scrimmage. The group excelled in the zone match coverage last season but has struggled with it in 2023. Washington's run defense has been good at times -- it shut down Philadelphia's D'Andre Swift and Atlanta's Bijan Robinson. But the inconsistencies in the pass defense remain the biggest issue. -- John Keim -- Rank: 24

This was a hidden-yards victory in Atlanta, if there ever was one. Jamison Crowder's 61-yard punt return tilted the game back in Washington's favor early, setting up a Commanders touchdown that put them ahead for good. Kendall Fuller's pick and 23-yard return stunted the Falcons' momentum two minutes into the second half. Washington also stymied Atlanta twice on fourth down, grabbed a red-zone interception and stopped a late two-point attempt. The defense picked off Desmond Ridder three times and consistently gave the offense great field position. It was just strong, complementary football for four quarters -- and a massive departure from the egg the Commanders laid against the Bears in Week 5. But, please, can we keep Sam Howell from getting hit so much?

CBS Sports -- Rank: 19

That was a big-time road victory against the Falcons. The defense, which had been awful, came up big.

USA Today -- Rank: 23

With four of their next six against NFC East opponents, including both games against the Giants, Washington could well be entering a stretch that determines its season ... and quite possibly HC Ron Rivera's viability beyond 2023.

The Athletic -- Rank: 22

The Commanders have won one of their last four games, and that came Sunday when they were outgained 402-193 by a Falcons team that turned the ball over three times. Sam Howell, who is on pace to be sacked an NFL-record 96 times, has been a roller coaster, but the defense has been a disappointment, allowing 5.7 yards per play, which ranks 27th in the league.

FOX -- Rank: 20

All three of Sam Howell's touchdowns came on short fields that were provided by Atlanta miscues, but that's not his fault. The Washington offense didn't need a big day when the defense nearly doubled its takeaway total for the season.

Yahoo! -- Rank: 24

The Commanders are a weird 3-3 team. They seem much worse than their record. On Sunday they were outgained by the Falcons 402-193 and somehow won. It's not the time to buy the Commanders as a team that can slide into the playoffs.

PFT -- Rank: 21

They're staying in the hunt for the No. 7 seed.

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