- By Josh Clark
The following grades reflect needs, losses and cap space available.
If you count the investigation looming over Commanders’ owner Dan Snyder as a move and the head-scratcher for the un-coachable Carson Wentz, the 2022 free agency period would be graded as almost a complete failure.
But we’ll just stick with the moves here.
The Commanders went into the offseason with needs at linebacker, wide receiver and offensive line – but limited cash.
The team deserves credit for focusing on its line after losing Pro Bowl Guard Brandon Scherff to the Jaguars and basically a yacht full of cash.
Bringing in another pro bowler, Andrew Norwell, was a sound move. Norwell is a mauler in the run game and there’s no doubt Coach Ron Rivera recognized that when the team brought him on board.
He’s also familiar with Norwell, having coached him from 2014 through 2017.
He fits the scheme Offensive Line Coach John Matsko will be preaching. Matsko, too, coached Norwell during his early years.
Two other moves on their line help solidify depth.
Tackle Cornelius Lucas has started 15 games over the past two years, filling in at both tackle positions making him a valuable swing tackle and a nice bargain at 2 years, $8 million.
Tyler Larsen, their backup center will also return, although he’s returning from a ruptured achilles tendon.
Behind the line, J.D. McKissic’s signing was sort of a homecoming.
McKissic was set to join the Bills before shifting gears and heading back to Washington. The sure-handed third-down back is known as a locker room leader – something that may be needed in large doses during what could be a tumultuous season with the renewed investigation looming.
On defense, Bobby McCain brings back a safety who had four interceptions in 2021 and logged a 70.9 overall PFF grade.
Still 28 years old, he held opposing QB’s to a 65.5 QB rating in 2021 – an impressive feat.