Sam Howell becomes number 8 for Commanders Ron Rivera

Sam Howell’s jersey number is 14; in addition, he becomes number 8 for Ron Rivera.

Sunday, when Sam Howell gets his first NFL start against NFC East rival Dallas, Howell will be the eighth quarterback to play the position for Washington in Ron Rivera’s three seasons as head coach.

It has been much more crowded behind center for the Burgundy and Gold than the majority of NFL teams. This season saw Rivera go with Carson Wentz, Taylor Heinicke, Wentz again and now Howell in Sunday’s season finale at FedEx Field.

The 2021 season saw Rivera start Ryan Fitzpatrick, Heinicke, Garrett Gilbert and then Heinicke again. Also, Rivera pulled Heinicke during both losses to the Cowboys, choosing to play Kyle Allen the rest of the way.

Rivera’s first season in Washington was chaotic at quarterback. Rivera started Dwayne Haskins, then benched Haskins for Kyle Allen. Allen broke his ankle, and Rivera bypassed Haskins and went with Alex Smith.

Smith’s limited leg began to break down, and Rivera had to go back to Haskins. Haskins played so poorly that he was benched against the Panthers for Tyler Heinicke. Smith returned to play the season finale in Philadelphia, but the leg so restricted Smith that Rivera gave Heinicke his first start in the playoff game against Tampa Bay.

It’s been a wild and frustrating ride at quarterback for Rivera, perhaps best illustrated by the fact that he traded two second-day draft picks for Wentz. However, after his woeful play in the loss to the Browns, Wentz may likely not even be active in the season finale.

Enter Sam Howell into the quarterback equation. Just this week, one of the more respected analysts of the Commanders, Logan Paulsen, expressed, “From what I’ve seen and what I’ve heard, Sam is not ready”.

Might it be a baptism by fire for Howell against the Cowboys?

As an eighth day begins a new week, here’s to hoping the eighth quarterback for Rivera in Washington, Sam Howell, will mark a new beginning for the Burgundy and Gold.


Story originally appeared on Commanders Wire