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Commanders Three-Year Outlook Holds ‘Major Questions’

Tied to the move for quarterback Carson Wentz, the future in Washington is in doubt.

After the Washington Commanders press conference to celebrate receiver Terry McLaurin’s new contract, coach Ron Rivera met with media on the side for about 10 minutes.

During that time he mentioned having a three-year plan. In fact, he said, the team is always operating on a three-year plan.

So what do the next three years look like for the Commanders? Not good, according to ESPN.

“The Commanders made a bet this offseason on QB Carson Wentz, one that figures to shape their fortunes for the next three seasons,” says ESPN when ranking Washington 27th in the league in terms of their three-year outlook. “Wentz is unlikely to rediscover the form he showed in 2017…but he's also capable of being a much better player than he has been over the past two years…Beyond Wentz, organizational stability must be accounted for, as owner Daniel Snyder remains embroiled in accusations that he fostered a toxic work culture.”

Forecasted as the sixth-worst team in the league when looking ahead a few years is a far cry from the national opinion this team was slotted to be a contender just last season.

And if that projection starts to develop in reality, then Rivera likely won’t be around to set the next three-year plan, two years from now.

Of course, much of this lives on the analysis surrounding Wentz.

In ESPN’s formula, quarterbacks carry a grade all their own while the rest of the roster is grouped into another.

For the Commanders, the roster around Wentz is ranked 21st in the NFL, while the quarterback himself is 27th.

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According to this, Wentz is the lowest-ranked part of the actual football team.

“I still don't think the Commanders found the long-term quarterback answer,” the article continues. “And while I thought the defense -- and specifically the defensive line -- was a strength, I now have major questions about that unit going forward, too. Not the kind of progress I had hoped to see in Washington.”

But what if Wentz is just middle of the road?

The 16th ranked quarterback (Matt Ryan, Indianapolis Colts) carries a grade of 78 compared to Wentz’s 69.5.

Tallying that into Washington’s score, they jump to an overall grade of 75.7 compared to 74.5.

A small jump, but enough to put the team on the verge of entering the top 20.

The Commanders have doubters. They know that. 

And while the suits continue to shine a troubling shadow over the franchise, it’ll be up to the guys wearing pads, and the men and women training them, to prove everyone wrong.