Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NFL. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in Washington Commanders fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to participate in regular email surveys.
The Reacts survey is back on Hogs Haven!
When the season ended, I quietly promised myself that I wouldn’t publish another survey until the sale of the team was announced, or at least ‘til we had a clear idea about the identities of all the bidders and a timeline for the finalization of the process.
With the hiring of Eric Bieneimy as Assistant Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator this week, it seemed like I should break that promise to myself and take the temperature of the Hogs Haven as we approach the end of February. Who knows? With free agency right around the corner, I may even be back again in short order with another survey.
In any event, this week’s survey offers three simple “yes or no” questions.
The first one is probably the one I’m most interested in seeing the answer to. It asks whether or not Hogs Haven members believe that the arrival of Eric Bieniemy will make a genuine and positive difference for the franchise.
The second question asks whether you believe the sale of the team will be approved by the owners before the end of March. This comes against a background of recent reports that the sale process may not be completed until sometime in the summer.
A.J. Perez tonight on Craig Hoffman's show: "April, May, June" for a team sale, "if we get to that point."— SkinsDraft (@SkinsDraft) February 23, 2023
A.J. Perez, who writes for Front Office Sports has been all over everything related to Dan Snyder and the Commanders for many months now; he is considered a highly credible and well-informed national sports reporter, so when he says “April, May, June”, I take it seriously, and start groaning softly, holding myself and rocking. Our own Jamual Forrest interviewed La Canfora on his podcast, and his guess regarding the sale of the team was May/June.
Our third question is about your belief that Ron Rivera and Eric Bieniemy will show up Week 1 of the 2023 season with Sam Howell as the starting signal caller. While Ron Rivera has made noises about going into training camp with Howell as the designated #1, he has also talked about competition, and with Taylor Heinicke seemingly set to leave in free agency and Carson Wentz likely to receive his walking papers sometime in the next 17 days or so, the future of Washington’s QB position is uncertain, and a lot of possibilities would seem to still be on the table. Mike Florio recently floated a click-generating thought that Lamar Jackson could end up in Washington in the coming weeks. More realistic possibilities would seem to revolve around a veteran mentor for Howell or a mid-round draft pick to back up #14.
The decision-making on that position will presumably now integrate Bieniemy as a key element, which may change the dynamic from where it was when we last heard from coach Rivera on the QB issue.
In his first public statement about the 2nd year quarterback, Eric Bieniemy finished up with a lot of enthusiasm, but the earlier part of his answer struck me as being pretty lukewarm.
“I’m still going through the evaluation process. When it’s all said and done with, you know... Sam has some stuff to him, but like I said, you always want to create competition.”
I asked Eric Bieniemy directly about working with quarterback Sam Howell.— Scott Abraham (@Scott7news) February 23, 2023
Let's just say, he's excited!
"He's a heck of a player. Sam has some stuff to him. You always want to create competition. I watched that last game that he played, I saw that flex and that got me fired up" pic.twitter.com/NVJBbhivxg
Despite the enthusiastic ending to that question that he “had to admit”, the part that came before sounded like a pretty tepid endorsement, and the focus on “competition” makes me go, “hmmmm”.
But enough about what I’m thinking. Today, I’m interested in getting your thoughts and comments on our 3 “Yes-No” questions.
Results & comments
We’ll publish results of the survey later this week.
Feel free to leave comments below, as I rely on them when I report the survey results.