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Sam Howell ‘more than likely QB1’ going into offseason program

Washington Commanders quarterback Sam Howell impressed everyone with his performance in the 26-6 season-ending win over the Dallas Cowboys. Howell completed 11 of 19 passes for 169 yards with a touchdown and interception. Howell also rushed for 35 yards and a touchdown.

Howell was accurate, threw an outstanding deep ball and used his legs to keep the chains moving multiple times. Was he perfect? No. But for a first career start, it was quite the debut for Howell.

Last month, as Washington began its search for a new offensive coordinator, Rivera was reportedly telling prospective candidates the plan was for Howell to start at quarterback in 2023. Of course, it wasn’t Rivera handing the job to Howell, as he’d need to earn it with a strong offseason.

As Rivera made his rounds at the Super Bowl’s Radio Row Wednesday, Washington’s quarterback situation was a hot topic.

In an interview with the NFL Network, host Andrew Siciliano asked Rivera the following question: “Ron, looking ahead, do you think your starting quarterback, Week 1, is on your roster right now?”

“Well, I most certainly think he can be,” Rivera answered. “I know this, we will go into OTAs, minicamp and training camp with Sam Howell, more than likely QB1, and we’ll see what happens. It’s his opportunity; this is a challenge to him; if he comes out and does the things that he’s capable of, we believe he’s capable of, he can most certainly be our guy. But we’ll find out, and that’s what competition is going to do; it’s going to bring the best out of our guys.”

Rivera doesn’t promise Howell the job. However, Howell will have every chance to win the starting quarterback job in 2023. Barring a trade for Aaron Rodgers — and that’s not going to happen — Howell will be competing with another veteran to start for the Commanders in 2023.

In Howell’s performance against the Cowboys, he wasn’t asked to do too much in the passing game. The offense had a lot of quick, easy reads, but that’s happening around the league. Good coaching is about tailoring your offense to your talent.

Depending on what type of veteran passer is signed, Washington should have the money to add talent to the offensive line and bring defensive tackle Daron Payne back in 2023.

Story originally appeared on Commanders Wire