What We Saw: Week 2

The What We Saw team recaps everything you missed from a crazy Week 2

Commanders @ Lions

Final Score: Lions 36, Commanders 27

Writer: Chuck Steele (@ChuckSteele_T2T on Twitter)

 

This week Washington hit the road, looking to keep the momentum rolling after a week one win and a strong performance from their new Commander of the offense in Carson Wentz. However, it was the Lions who were hungry for their first victory of the season in a game where the Jarod Goff and Amon-Ra St. Brown connection, yet again, was something that couldn’t be contained. They continue to show that the end of last year’s breakout wasn’t just a lack of the Lions’ starters. With the Lions jumping out to a big 22-0 lead at halftime, it seemed like Detroit would coast to an easy victory, but the Commanders tightened up the defense and started setting the tempo on offense. Wentz aired it out and was leading the comeback, bringing it to what would have been a one-possession game late in the fourth, if it weren’t for a missed extra point by the Commanders. On another historic day for St. Brown (that we will touch on shortly), the Lions found success offensively and defensively, being able to show resilience, holding off the comeback from the Commanders, advancing to 1-1 on the season. 

 

Washington Commanders

 

Quarterback

 

Carson Wentz: 30/46, 337 Yards, 3 TD, 1 Int | 2 Carries, 23 Yards

 

After his debut with the Commanders ended up in a win, with four touchdowns and just over 300 yards, Carson Wentz was able to follow it up with another solid performance, this time in a losing effort. Facing a stiff Lions pass rush, Wentz was able to do nothing in the first half. He even was sacked and fumbled in the opposite endzone, with the ball going out the back of the endzone for a safety for the Lions. With nothing positive in the first half, Wentz into halftime down 22-0.

 

 

The second half was a different story. Coming out firing, looking like he did in week one. Wentz threw his first touchdown pass to wideout Curtis Samuel. Taking advantage of a defensive end covering the wideout, Wentz was able to hit him down the sidelines, holding onto the ball as he took a shot from the safety as he was crossing the goalline, completing the catch. For being pressured all game, Wentz was able to show poise in the pocket when he had time. On his second touchdown toss of the game, Wentz was standing in a clean pocket and was able to find Logan Thomas, hitting him right on the numbers for an easy 20-yard score, making it 14-22.

 

 

With Wentz not going down without a fight, he gave the Commanders a chance. Hitting Jahan Dotson for a one-yard touchdown score, the Commanders had a chance to make it a possession game but missed the extra point. On top of his touchdowns, it was great to see the quarterback spreading the ball around, with four receivers getting at least five targets., and the three touchdowns to three different players. His two blemishes weren’t fully his fault. Wentz was sacked from behind in the first half in the opposing team’s endzone, fumbling the ball. The ball ended up going out of the back of the endzone resulting in a safety for the Detroit Lions. His other turnover came in the second half. On a pass high to Logan Thomas, the ball bounced off his hands and into the air, a lions defender tried to make the pick but ended up also tipping the ball. The play was finished off by a diving interception by William Harris. Finishing with another game over 300 yards, and adding another 3 touchdowns to his belt, Wentz had a solid game, (or you can say second half) for the second week in a row. Wentz will look to keep his strong start going against his former team, the Philadelphia Eagles, next week.

 

 

Running Back

 

Antonio Gibson: 14 Carries, 28 Yards, TD | 4 Targets, 2 Receptions, 13 Yards

J.D. McKissic: 3 Carries, 9 Yards | 7 Targets, 7 Receptions, 54 Yards

 

In a game where the Commanders were playing catch up, the game script wasn’t in favor of starting running back Antonio Gibson. The touches he did have, he couldn’t find much room for anything, and the same goes for J.D McKissic who only tallied three carries. The Lions’ defensive front was ferocious all night, holding all Commanders running backs to a total of 37 yards with an ugly 2.2 yards per carry. However, Gibson was able to punch it in from one yard out. He had two back-to-back carries at the goal line later in the game from a yard out, only to be stopped both times by the Lions, so it still could have been  a better day.

McKissic however, was able to find success as the Commanders receiving back, playing catch up for the whole game. With Wentz facing serious pressure, he looked often to J.D for quick releases and easy completions, racking up seven receptions on seven targets. The Commander running game will look for a better outing, hoping to take off some of the pressure on Carson Wentz next week.

 

Wide Receiver/Tight End

 

Curtis Samuel: 1 Carry, 21 Yards | 9 Targets, 7 Receptions, 78 Yards, TD

Terry McLaurin: 1 Carry, 7 Yards | 8 Targets, 4 Receptions, 75 Yards

Jahan Dotson: 5 Targets, 4 Receptions, 59 Yards, TD

Logan Thomas: 5 Targets, 3 Receptions, 37 Yards, TD

John Bates: 3 Targets, 2 Receptions, 15 Yards

Dax Milne: 1 Target, 1 Reception, 6 Yards

Cam Sims: 2 Targets

 

Washington’s receiving core is a fun one to watch. Curtis Samuel was their leading receiver in this one, showing he’s still the same caliber player that he was when Washington signed him. He’s picking up quick chemistry with Wentz, scoring for the second game in a row. Samuel beat a defensive end after lining up in the backfield and even held control of the ball as he was popped by the safety coming over to help, securing the touchdown.

 

 

He was targeted often by Wentz in this one, needing to move the ball in the second half, Samuel was there, racking up seven receptions, one being a beautiful 27-yarder down the sideline, beating the coverage on play action. Samuel even took an end-around toss from McKissic for a 27-yard run. Samuel seems to be an integral part of the Washington offense.

Terry McLaurin took in only four receptions but made the most out of them. He wasn’t able to score like he did last week, but he was able to rip off good chunk plays for the Commanders, his biggest being a 33-yard diving catch off a Commanders play action. It’s discouraging to see such a game from a player we are usually seeing more from, but considering how Wentz is spreading the ball out, it seems the wideouts will have to wait for their turns for the big games.

Jahan Dotson is settling in nicely into the NFL. He seems to be phased, putting together another solid start. After two week-one touchdowns, Dotson was able to turn one of his four receptions into yet another score. One yard out from the endzone, Dotson made a nice move at the line of scrimmage to create just enough separation on a slant to Wentz to find him in the middle of the endzone for the score. The rookie will look to build off his 59-yard, one touchdown performance next week.

Converted Tight End Logan Thomas had one touchdown in this game, getting hit with a pass right in the numbers for an easy 20-yard score. Logan will be a touchdown-dependent start in the tight end position, as Wents seems to be building good chemistry with his three starting wideouts. 

 

Detroit Lions

 

Quarterback

 

Jared Goff: 20/34, 256 Yards, 4 TD | 2 Carries, -2 Yards

 

Jarod Goff had a great game tonight, leading the Lions to their first win of the year behind his four-touchdown performance. Goff did a great job spreading the ball around, connecting with seven different players in the game, but none were more preferred to him than his new shiny toy in Amon-Ra St. Brown, looking his was 12 times, for nine receptions and two scores. His other scores came off a three-yarder to Josh Reynolds and a pass that was deflected at the line of scrimmage that D’Andre Swift was able to turn to a catch and run for a touchdown. More on that later! Goff did a great job with his ball deliveries, hitting his passes where only his team can make a play. Committing no turnovers in this game and securing the win, Goff will look to grab the team’s second win when they visit their division rival the Minnesota Vikings in what should be a high-scoring affair. 

 

Running Back

 

D’Andre Swift: 5 Carries, 56 Yards | 5 Targets, 2 Receptions, 31 Yards, TD

Jamaal Williams: 12 Carries, 53 Yards | 1 Target, 1 Reception, 7 Yards

Craig Reynolds: 3 Carries, 16 Yards | 1 Target, 1 Reception, 13 Yards

 

D’Andre Swift was dealing with an ankle injury this week leading up to the game, but he was still able to turn in a solid performance under the circumstances. After exploding for over 100 yards last week, Swift saw little rushing. He managed 56 yards, however nearly all of those yards came off a big run on the Lions’ third drive of the game, going for over 50. His biggest play of the game came on a touchdown reception. Goff had his ball tipped at the lion of scrimmage causing Swift to have to make a diving catch. With no one around to touch him down, Swift was able to get up and make several defenders miss as he turned the play into a 23-yard touchdown.

Jamaal Williams got the bulk of the rushes. Nothing spectacular, but Williams was okay in this game from a fantasy standpoint. He was able to pound the rock for a consistent 4.4 yards per carry, but only finished with 53 yards on the ground. He did add one reception for seven yards.

 

 

Wide Receiver/Tight End

 

Amon-Ra St. Brown: 2 Carries, 68 Yards | 12 Targets, 9 Receptions, 116 Yards, 2 TD

Josh Reynolds: 3 Targets, 3 Receptions, 38 Yards, 1 TD

T.J. Hockenson: 7 Targets, 3 Receptions, 26 Yards

Brock Wright: 1 Target, 1 Reception, 25 Yards

DJ Chark: 4 Targets

 

The receiving core was led by the new sensation of the Detriot Lions, Amon-Ra St. Brown. St. Brown has picked up where left off last year on a historic day today. St Brown came into this game needing one touchdown for his sixth straight game with a score, being the most in Detroit Lions history. He was able to accomplish that towards the end of the 1st quarter, hooking up with Jared Goff for a 13-yard score. He also was able to grab a score of 12 yards. St Brown was also able to break off a big play, a wide-open catch in the middle of the field, working his way and taking it down the sidelines 49 yards before being pushed out of bounds. Finishing with nine receptions, over 100 yards, and two scores, St Brown is the first player in NFL history to record eight or more catches with at least one touchdown, in six straight games. On top of that, he ties Micheal Thomas and Antonio Brown as the only players to record eight or more catches in eight straight games. He looks to break that record next week.

 

 

Josh Reynolds was the other wideout to score a touchdown. On first and goal, Reynolds jumped and made a catch three yards out, getting one foot down and dragging his toe on the other to secure the touchdown.

 

 

T.J Hockenson was heavily targeted, seeing seven passes go his way, however, he was only able to haul in three of them. Like Thomas on the Commanders, Hockenson seems to be a touchdown-dependent play at the tight end position. D.J Chark was targeted four times but went catch-less in this one. The Lions’ receiving core will look to come ready to play next Sunday in their division matchup vs the Vikings.

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