NFC Notes: Commanders, Cowboys, Giants


The Commanders have dropped two straight games and in both they have fallen behind by multiple scores. The offense fought back to make things close against the Lions in Week 2, but didn’t have as much success in Week 3 against the Eagles. In both games, Washington has struggled to protect QB Carson Wentz, as he’s gone down 14 times — although he shares some responsibility for that. The Commanders have a 65/35 run/pass ratio through three games, and while that’s a product of playing from behind so much, HC Ron Rivera adds that’s not a sustainable offensive identity. 

“We can’t feel that our best three offensive players are our three wide receivers,” Rivera said via the Athletic’s Ben Standig. “Because if we go into that with that mindset, the tendency is gonna wanna throw the ball to get it in their hands. With what we can do with our ability to run the ball, we have to give that a shot as well.”

Although the trio of Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel and Jahan Dotson are probably Washington’s best strength on offense, they do have RB Antonio Gibson, an offensive line that’s had success run blocking and potential reinforcements in burly third-round RB Brian Robinson who can come off injured reserve next week. Being more balanced is the key to taking pressure off of Wentz, per Rivera, and finding an offensive identity they can win with. 

“Whether it starts with running the ball, whether it starts with throwing the ball early on,” Rivera said. “Throwing shorter passes with the intermediate passes. Take a little bit of pressure off the quarterback, and then every now and then, throw a deep one. It’s a combination of things we’re working through and trying to find.”

  • Commanders OC Scott Turner said they are not considering any changes to their offensive line ahead of Week 4: “We’re not thinking of making any changes on the lineup. Just to make that clear.” (Standig)


Cowboys HC Mike McCarthy praised QB Cooper Rush for how well he has done in the absence of QB Dak Prescott. Rush moved to 3-0 in relief of Prescott with the win on Monday night against the Giants. 

“Well, he doesn’t get rattled,” McCarthy said via “He’s the same, every day. So consistent. But yeah, he’s playing good football right now. I’m glad to recognize him for it. He’s giving us the boost to just keep playing on offense. It tells you the kind of team you have. These guys have been leaning on one another. This is an outstanding locker room. The accountability is very high. The resilience is there, you can see it every step of the way. It’s just like anything, sometimes you have to go through some hard times to get to where you want to go, and hopefully we’ve built a good foundation to get to where we want to go.”

“Yeah, that’s the job,” Rush said. “You’ve got to come in and you’ve got to play well every week. That’s how this league works at every position. Week-in and week-out you’ve got to show up and you know we were able to build some momentum last week and it carried into this week, and we just don’t hurt ourselves and keep staying on track and making plays, I think we’ll do alright.”

  • Cowboys OL Jason Peters‘ one-year deal is worth $1,760,556. Peters received a $765,000 signing bonus and $995,556 of his $1.12 million base salary is guaranteed. There’s also up to $75,000 in per-game active roster bonuses. (Over The Cap)


  • The Athletic’s Dan Duggan writes Giants third-round CB Cordale Flott (calf strain) was using a walking scooter at Thursday’s practice and there’s currently no word on his timetable of recovery.
  • Giants DC Don Martindale said their inside linebackers must be able to run and tackle effectively: “If you have a slow Mike, you got a slow defense.” (Pat Leonard)
  • Leonard notes that LB Jaylon Smith may be elevated from the practice squad for Week 4. 

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