Throughout this season, after some ugly games, particularly in Week 3 vs. Buffalo, Howell took responsibility for the sacks and turnovers that plagued him. Even when some of Washington’s issues were bigger than Howell’s, he owned them.
On Sunday, in an ugly and embarrassing loss to the New York Giants, Howell turned the ball over three times. Washington turned the ball over six times, which the Giants converted into 24 of their 31 points. Howell’s final turnover came on his last pass.
The Commanders had the ball around midfield with around 30 seconds remaining. Under heavy pressure, Howell, trying to throw the ball away, had too much air under it, and Giants linebacker Isaiah Simmons intercepted it and took it to the house to seal the game for New York.
Afterward, Howell put the loss squarely on his shoulders.
“When you turn the ball over that many times, you’re not going to win games,” Howell said. “It starts with me; I’ve got to do a better job taking care of the football. I didn’t give my team a chance to win today. We obviously got to be better. We moved the ball well throughout the game, but just too many turnovers. No matter who you’re playing in the NFL, if you turn the ball over that many times, you’re not going to win.”
Howell is correct on several fronts. He does need to do a better job of taking care of the football. So does everyone else. Right now, the Commanders are struggling so badly; Howell is trying to do so much by himself. It’s admirable, but Howell is still learning to play in the NFL. His teammates need to help him. The coaches need to help him. The defense…….well, they are just bad.
Need proof of Howell’s effort from Sunday:
TOUGH AS NAILS
— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) November 19, 2023
The play should’ve initially been ruled a touchdown by the side judge when Howell spun off Deonte Banks and over the plain. When the whistle didn’t blow, Howell kept going and took a nasty hit on the sideline that set off a scuffle.
That play — and what happened afterward — were proof his teammates believe in him. His comments after the game prove why Howell is already trusted as a leader despite being such a young player.