Day by day, former UNC quarterback Sam Howell is looking more like an NFL franchise quarterback.
Last night was perhaps Howell’s best performance in a Washington Commanders uniform, as he completed 19-of-25 passes for 188 yards and two touchdowns in leading his team to a 29-28 victory over the Baltimore Ravens. This was all in the first half.
Washington’s victory snapped a historic streak – the Ravens had won 24 consecutive preseason games before the loss.
Howell’s performance caught the eye of several people around the football world, but there’s one guy in particular who Tar Heel fans will recognize in particular – UNC head coach Mack Brown.
Howell’s touchdown passes went to running back Jaret Patterson and another former Tar Heel – Dyami Brown – who ended his night with two receptions for 27 yards and the score. Though Brown is listed as a second-string receiver behind Terry McLaurin, one of the NFL’s top deep threats, his chemistry with Howell could push him into starting opportunities.
Howell and the Commanders will end their preseason slate at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday against the Cincinnati Bengals, then host the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, Sept. 10 at 1 p.m. It’ll be interesting to see how much further Howell progresses from his impressive preseason showing.
Meanwhile in Chapel Hill, Brown is dealing with another NFL-caliber quarterback in Drake Maye, who will start his redshirt sophomore campaign against the South Carolina Gamecocks on Saturday, Sept. 2 in Bank of America Stadium. Maye and the Heels will look to play solid football throughout 2023.