The Washington Commanders have the easiest strength of schedule heading into the NFL this season, but NFL Network analyst Adam Rank still believes the team will struggle. In a game-by-game breakdown of the team's schedule, Rank does not view the Commanders in a favorable light.
Despite facing the two worst teams in the NFL from a year ago in the first two weeks (Jacksonville Jaguars and Detroit Lions), Rank has Washington falling to 0-2 to start the season. Those two losses trickle into eight straight to begin the season.
Week 9 is when Rank believes the Commanders snap their losing streak, pulling out a win against the Minnesota Vikings.
To round out the season, Rank predicts just two more wins for the Commanders in Weeks 12 & 13 against the Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants, but has the team ending the year on a four-game losing streak to finish 3-14.
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Rank's predictions eerily mirror the team's 2019 season, where the team started 0-5, fired head coach Jay Gruden, won in Weeks 12 & 13, only to lose the final four games of the season.
It's hard to see Washington fall into that path again with a better quarterback (Carson Wentz over Case Keenum), better defense (Chase Young over Matt Ioannidis) and better coaching.
A three-win campaign would be the worst of Ron Rivera's career and likely would put his job in extreme jeopardy. It would also signal to the franchise the need to truly hit the reset button and find a franchise quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft.