The Washington Commanders are back on the practice field for mandatory mini-camp. This will be their last set of workouts, along with a single practice day next Tuesday, before the team goes on break before training camp next month. Chase Young, Montez Sweat, and Charles Leno Jr. were the three veterans who skipped OTAs and worked out on their own the last few weeks. They’re all back with the team today, and Ron Rivera said that they want Young to pick up where he left off last year when he finally returned from a complicated ACL surgery. The former DROY enters his contract season as a starter, but Rivera wants to see him play less tentatively, and will be assessing how he looks over the next three days of practice.
Rivera says there is a QB competition, but second-year QB Sam Howell has been getting all of the 1st team reps during offseason workouts. The coaching staff will evaluate how the reps are split during training camp, but for this part of the offseason, Howell is the man under center. Jacoby Brissett is a strong veteran presence, which is a big reason the Commanders made him a priority free agent signing.
LIVE: HC Ron Rivera speaks with the media before Day 1 of minicamp https://t.co/aRhVXUBekj— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) June 6, 2023
Veterans showed up for mandatory mini-camp:
Ron Rivera said he's an opportunity to see Chase Young, Montez Sweat and Charles Leno after all three missed OTAs: "I'm excited to see them as they work"— Matthew Paras (@Matthew_Paras) June 6, 2023
Ron Rivera said they will ramp up Chase Young, Montez Sweat and Charles Leno to get a feel for where they're at physically before throwing them in there fully. The three trained elsewhere during voluntary OTAs.— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) June 6, 2023
On Chase Young, Commanders coach Ron Rivera said "he started to get healthy by the end of the year... want to see him pick up where he left off...not be tentative."— John Keim (@john_keim) June 6, 2023
Asked if Chase Young is automatically back in the starting lineup, Ron Rivera responds “absolutely.” That settles that folks.— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) June 6, 2023
"And again, I know part of the reason for him not being around is he wanted to really focus in on just that specifically and he wanted to do that. ... The proof will be in the pudding when you watch him in practice."— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) June 6, 2023
NFL gambling policy:
Rivera said that the NFL is having teams remind players of its gambling policy. The Commanders have already presented a power point about the policy and plan to do so a few more times this summer, starting tomorrow.— Matthew Paras (@Matthew_Paras) June 6, 2023
Rivera said of Daron Payne now that he got paid: "He's doing it like he did last year and the year before. He works hard the same way. Same thing with Jonathan; been the same with Terry. They haven't changed who they are. That's the best thing about it."— John Keim (@john_keim) June 6, 2023
Less time for Installs:
Rivera says by the end of the week commanders will have everything installed. “We’ve gotten the work we want out of it.”— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) June 6, 2023
Rivera "losing a week effects our instillation. had to speed things up that we'd have a couple more days to do. one thing we've seen is put more on players plates and guys are handling it nicely. Now looking for the retention of it." #Commanders— Sherree Burruss (@SherreeBurruss) June 6, 2023
Sam Howell has taken all the first-team reps this offseason, but Ron Rivera says that he still considers it to be a competition between Howell and Jacoby Brissett.— Matthew Paras (@Matthew_Paras) June 6, 2023
More: "Until we play games it would be unfair to make assessments; there is a lot of confidence [in Howell]."— John Keim (@john_keim) June 6, 2023
Not just about rotating reps, it's also about what they see in meetings, around teammates etc. All goes into the equation.
Rivera likes the dynamic between the quarterbacks this off-season. Jacoby Brissett has been a good teacher to the younger players, and Howell has been just as encouraging to his teammates— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) June 6, 2023
Ron Rivera, on if Jacoby Brissett will get any 1st-team reps in training camp: "That'll be something that we'll sit down and talk about once we finish up. I know Eric [Bieniemy] likes what he's seeing right now from both guys, so we'll just continue to work."— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) June 6, 2023
QB Dyanamics "you watch the cooperation between all those guys. Jacoby is a great teammate and see how he handles communication with Sam and you can tell he's a legit team guy. Sam is encouraging and giving praise to Jacoby and other guys. You want a room like that" #Commanders— Sherree Burruss (@SherreeBurruss) June 6, 2023
Ron Rivera said Washington will take advantage of all three days of mini-camp this week and one day of practice next week. Coaches often let players leave a day early as a reward, but the team was stripped of one 3-day OTA session by the league.— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) June 6, 2023
Ron Rivera said how the team handles their final workouts (their last one is next Tuesday) before leaving for a break will show him a lot about where they are as a team.— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) June 6, 2023
Chemistry within the offensive line will be important, Rivera. Cornelius Lucas has done a good job of communicating with Saahdiq Charles and Chris Paul, and he expect Leno will do the same— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) June 6, 2023