Wentz says 'there's no panic' after Commanders' three-game skid originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
ASHBURN, Va. -- In the NFL, things move fast.
It was just three and a half weeks ago when the Washington Commanders defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars at home behind a four-touchdown performance from new quarterback Carson Wentz. Three games (and three losses) later, it's easy to forget how optimistic those in Ashburn were following the season opener.
Washington's offense has started slowly in each of the team's last three games. In Weeks 2 and 3, they were outscored a combined 46-0 in the first half. A comeback effort was admirable in Detroit, but none existed the following week at home against Philadelphia. Last week, Washington couldn't get out of its own way; the Commanders recorded more penalty yards than passing yards in a road loss to rival Dallas.
After what's transpired on the field the past three weeks, it'd be easy for the mood to be somber. Wentz, though, insists there's no sense of panic from those inside the locker room as the Burgundy and Gold attempt to end the franchise's latest losing streak.
"There's no sense of panic. There's no sense of chaos around here," Wentz said Wednesday. "We're going into Week 5. We know how we've played [and] it wasn't up to our standards. But at the same time, I know everyone in that locker room has a ton of confidence. We've seen spurts of what we're capable of. ... We know the sense of urgency that there is but there's no panic by any means."
Although Wentz reiterated multiple times that there's no "sense of panic," he made it clear that the franchise must turn things around quickly before even more losses pile up.
"We've got to find a way to win. Patience only lasts so long," he said. "We've got to find ways to convert, stay on the field, score touchdowns, score points and win some ball games."
Wentz's play has been a constant topic of conversation among Commanders fans in recent weeks, as many feel the quarterback simply hasn't performed well enough. That's both fair and true -- the numbers support such a claim.
After throwing for over 300 yards and three-plus touchdowns in each of the Commanders' first two games, Wentz has combined for just 381 passing yards and one touchdown over the last two contests. His play has dropped off and so has Washington's offense production as a whole.
A seven-year veteran, Wentz understands he has to be better moving forward.
"There are plays out there that I could have made [I] definitely missed," Wentz said. "Some different things I could do to help this team and keep drives going and all these things. Just trying to keep getting better, keep getting more consistent, find ways to stay on the field and convert some third downs. ... It wasn't my best, but that's the beauty of this league. You turn the page and you're on to the next."
Additionally, Wentz has taken responsibility for many of the Commanders' offensive shortcomings, which has earned respect from some of his teammates.
"He's the same person every single day. I love and respect that about him," tight end Logan Thomas said. "That's a true sign of a warrior, a leader, a captain. He just comes to work every day and worries about that."
"He hasn't been hanging his head; he doesn't point fingers at all," star receiver Terry McLaurin said. "He really takes a lot of that blame on himself. I think that's admirable of him, but also, we could also do a better job helping him as his supporting cast making his job a little easier."
For Washington's offense to reach its potential, McLaurin feels everyone -- Wentz, players and coaches -- must take accountability and see how they, individually, can improve to help the team. The standout receiver made it clear that the recent offensive struggles go a lot further than just Wentz's inconsistent play.
"It's easy to point fingers for the blame," McLaurin said. "It takes a strong human being to look at yourself in the mirror and see how you play a part in that and how you can make a difference."
"While our record is 1-3 right now, the season is not over," McLaurin later added. "If you want things to change, you have to change your behavior. If you keep doing the same thing over and over, it's kind of like insanity. So we all have to take that accountability individually, as a group, offensively and defensively, coaches, put that all together and see if we can have a better outcome."
Next up for the Commanders are the Tennessee Titans, who finished last year's regular season as the AFC's top seed. Tennessee started slowly in 2022, but they've won two straight entering this Sunday's matchup at FedEx Field.
Wentz, who faced Tennessee twice last season as a member of the Colts, is plenty familiar with the Titans' defense and looking forward to the challenge.
"It's a good team. Very good defense, they are coached well," Wentz said. "They fly around and make a lot of plays. Their front is very talented. We feel that we've gone up against some very good fronts lately, so I'm confident the guys will be ready for that. ... I know we've got a tall task, but it'll be fun. I'm excited for it."