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  • Chappell Wilson

Washington wins in second half comeback 20-17

Washington knew that Sunday’s game against the New England Patriots was a must-win if they had any plans on staying in the playoff hunt. Coach Ron Rivera was figured to be on the hot seat entering Sunday after Washington dropped four of its last five games. The Commanders faced the Patriots after moving on from their two starting outside linebackers and former first-round picks Chase Young and Montez Sweat.

New England exposed the Commanders lack of a pass rush with two consecutive touchdowns in the first half. In the second half, both teams went back and forth as Sam Howell threw the ball all over the yard for 325 passing yards. The ground game was effective as Washington rushed for 124 yards, and second-year receiver Jahan Dotson caught his third touchdown pass of the year. Star receiver Terry McLaurin led the team in receiving yards with 73 on only 5 receptions, and Washington converted 9 of their 15 third downs.

The Commanders defense stepped up big in the fourth quarter as they held New England scoreless and propelled the team to its fourth victory of the season. Offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy was praised by Commanders fans for putting together a game plan that protected quarterback Sam Howell and still allowed him to throw the ball deep. The offense clicked on all cylinders as the ball was spread around, even to the running backs and backup receivers. The Commanders will be heading across the country to play the 5-3 Seattle Seahawks, who will be looking for a win after getting blown out by the Ravens. Washington will be fighting an uphill battle throughout this season as they are in a division that will be nearly impossible for them to win, but they will have plenty of opportunities as they still have divisional opponents on their schedule. Coach Ron Rivera will continue to coach his team to be tough and hard-nosed, just like himself, as they look to maybe sneak into the playoffs.

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