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Commanders Reacts Survey - WR & DE: Which Washington players don’t make the cut?

Poll questions!!

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.

With the first preseason game coming up on Friday night against the Browns, the roster numbers game starts to get real. The Commanders currently have 90 men on the roster, but at the end of the month, the regular roster gets trimmed to 53 players, with another 16 going to the practice squad.

In today’s Reacts survey, I want to focus on guys who may be ‘on the bubble’ at two positions: wide receiver and defensive end.

Wide Receivers

The Commanders have talented starters at the receiver position, and good depth. It seems reasonable to think that a player could be cut from the team’s roster and end up getting snatched up by another team. The top-4 positions seem to be set: Terry McLaurin, who seems to be the face of the franchise; last year’s top draft pick, Jahan Dotson; 2020 free agent offensive weapon Curtis Samuel, and Dyami Brown, a former 3rd round draft pick who played with Sam Howell in college and who has received praise from coaches and media members alike.

The team will most likely open the season with 6 receivers, but could limit the room to only 5 guys if they think that RB Antonio Gibson could double as a part-time receiver. That means that a bunch of guys are competing for just one or two available roster spots.

Today, we’ll ask you to pick one guy from a list of three that you think won’t make the initial 53-man roster for the team’s home opener against the Arizona Cardinals. The choices are:

Byron Pringle - a former Kansas City player who had the best year of his 4-year career in 2021, playing for Eric Bieniemy.

Marcus Kemp - Washington’s first free-agent signing of 2023, Kemp is a big-bodied receiver with limited production — 8 catches in 5 seasons — who is primarily a special teams player who would likely step into the roster spot left vacant by Cam Sims.

Dax Milne - drafted by Washington in the 7th round of 2021, Milne is a competent receiver and was last year’s primary punt returner. As a return man, he exhibited ‘safe hands’ but was uninspiring in terms of his return yards.

Defensive ends

Nearly every DE on Washington’s roster is in a contract year. We know who the starters are — Montez Sweat and Chase Young. I don’t think anyone doubts that James Smith-Williams is the #3 guy in the unit. The team will likely keep 4 or 5 guys, so that leaves one or two spots to be filled from a significant pool of candidates, including two of this year’s draft picks.

Today, we’ll ask you to pick one guy from a list of three that you don’t believe will be on the roster for Week 1.

KJ Henry - It would be unusual for a 5th round pick not to make the roster, especially after the team traded up to select him, but the competition in the position group will be stiff, and the team will be struggling for depth at other positions.

Casey Toohill - Toohill has spent nearly three full years in Washington after being picked up off of waivers from the Eagles. He has appeared in 40 games for Washington, and he can be relied on to drop into coverage as part of the defensive disguise of coverage schemes. He will be tough to dislodge from his roster spot.

Efe Obada - Obada was a free agent signing a year ago, but he proved to be a very valuable member of Jack Del Rio’s high-performing defense. At 6’6”, 265 pounds, he is able to move inside in certain defensive packages, so the coaches love his versatility and high level of motivation and performance. He had 24 tackles, including 4 sacks in his sole season in a Commanders uniform.

Comments & Results

Of course, we invite you to answer the survey questions below, but also feel free to expand on your answers in the comments section. When the results are posted in the next few days, your comments will be very useful; I rely on them when discussing the results of the survey.