ASHBURN, Va. (DC News Now) — The Washington Commanders are on cloud nine after defeating the New England Patriots on the road, 20-17, Sunday for the first time since 1996. Quarterback Sam Howell looked good again, racking up another 300-yard-plus performance, connected with Jahan Dotson for a touchdown for a second-straight game, and converted 15 passing first downs. After the game, defensive tackle Jonathan Allen said Sam Howell is the future at quarterback for Washington. While Rivera appreciates Allen’s comments, he said the team still hasn’t arrived yet.
“We’re not where we want to be … but our focus has to be playing one game at a time and playing that one game consistently and … play complementary football … The guys believed with Taylor [Henicke] they had a chance … the guys believe there’s a chance with Sam” Rivera said during Monday’s press conference.
As for Washington defense, they’ve had their fair share of struggles this season. First-round rookie Emmanuel Forbes was supposed to have a positive impact on the defense and coming into the Patriots game, the impact wasn’t there. Against New England, Forbes bounced back with two deflected passes, one of them nearly an interception. Rivera said the rookie corner is learning and understanding what it takes to play his position.
“Forbes had a good day yesterday. He played with a little bit more confidence, he’s doing a lot of things that we asked for. Like I said though, he’s got a ways to go. There’s some detailed things that he has to pay attention to, he must pay attention to if he’s going to be a really good player in this league” Rivera said.
The Commanders have tomorrow off to celebrate “Victory Tuesday” and hit the practice field Wednesday to prepare for the Seattle Seahawks.