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Commanders are eliminated, and Carson Wentz faces an uncertain NFL future

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late Sunday afternoon humiliating loss It effectively ended the Washington Commanders’ season and was some of the fans who continued to spy on quarterback Carson Wentz running off the field. They sprinted down the steps of the lower bowl of the FedEx field and joined the small crowd that had gathered above the tunnel to the locker room.

Wentz did not look up. His expression didn’t change. But he couldn’t help but hear the crowd’s frustration during his 24-10 loss to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. On the Commander’s first drive of the day, Wentz threw an interception on his second throw, and the fans interrupted backup Taylor Heinicke’s chants.

Commanders’ playoff hopes end following ugly loss to Browns

“It’s part of football,” Wentz said. “I’ve seen a lot and been through a lot in my seven years. Okay. Today wasn’t the best day. I wish I had it.” [gone] different. I feel like getting some of my teammates there early in the game put us in a bit of a hole. But that’s part of football too.”

Did the chant influence him?

“[I] try not to [let them],” He said.

In many ways, this was Washington’s worst offensive performance of the season. 24-8 driving in Dallas in the fourth week. It was a dismal end to a bet coach Ron Rivera made after a brief briefing. Promising show for Wentz last week Lost in San FranciscoAgainst the Browns, the quarterback passed 16-for-28 (57.1%) for 143 yards, no touchdowns and 3 interceptions. He also took three of his sacks, all of which took him over 2.4 seconds, according to TruMedia’s website.

“I thought he had his moment,” Rivera said, noting that the team put together a 21-play, 96-yard drive before halftime to score their only touchdown. Wentz said he needed to throw the ball earlier on his first interception and more zips on his second interception.

“He probably could have put the ball out, and he’s had it a few times when he probably should have put it out,” Rivera added. Hmm.”

In the opposite locker room, the Browns seemed unsurprised by Wentz’s efforts. Several defenders, including end Jadevion Clowney and linebacker Reggie Ragland, preach every week that stopping runs on first and second downs will force Wentz to throw third and long. said.

Cleveland, who has one of the worst run defenses in the NFL, nearly executed the plan. Despite struggling to run the ball above average on early downs and facing a manageable third down, Washington averaged 6.1 yards to convert, the fifth-shortest of the year. Pass Rush beats Wentz and influences his decision-making.

“If you rattle him in your pocket, you’re done,” Clowney said. “I came in and said, ‘If I can get him to rattle, I can get a turnover out of him. ‘” We knew it. “

Four points from the Commanders’ 10-24 loss to the Browns

“If you know football, you know [Wentz] It’s a slow release and you can see Heinicke getting the ball out fast,” Ragland said. “Some people I know on the team” — Ragland at the University of Alabama Commanders He’s wide He’s receiver Cam He’s Sims and his tackle Jonathan —You can see it in movies too. They play different quarterbacks. “

Browns defensive end Myles Garrett said Wentz, who usually holds the ball too much, seemed to be doing more on Sunday because it was part of the game plan. He said the Commanders were in formations that aimed his shots deep, and he sometimes used two players to chip a defender, slowing him into the route and allowing Wentz to check him down. I pointed out that the options for were limited.

“They wanted some plays out on the field and some long-developed plays,” Garrett said. [Wentz] He’s holding onto it as much as he’s waiting for it all to unfold before his eyes.

Teammates defended Wentz in the commander’s locker room. Wide receiver Terry McLaughlin admitted it was “probably hard” for Wentz to hear Heinicke chants, and tight end Logan Thomas said, as a former quarterback, Wentz has had enough of himself.

“We can’t really blame [Wentz] for performance,” said Brian Robinson Jr. “We didn’t have the energy we needed. I feel like that sort of thing affected his performance.”

Buckner: Ron Rivera is back in the offseason gambling. It cost his team the postseason.

The final drive – overthrow, drop, and two false start penalties – encapsulated the sloppiness of Commander’s attack. When the clock ran out, Wentz worked his way through the Browns’ defense while shaking hands. He congratulated Garrett and Browns quarterback Deshawn Watson before taking a knee in midfield: Wentz, his end Chase Young, linebacker David Mayo, and his two staffers at the Browns. Kneel and hold hands in a prayer circle.

No one said anything related to the game. They prayed for the health of their players and their families, “the things that really matter in life.”

All afternoon, it was difficult to ignore the echoes of Wentz’s past. Wentz and his Colts, who needed a win to make the playoffs last season, collapsed with his 26-11 loss to the lower-ranked Jacksonville his Jaguars. Against another eliminated team this year, Wentz once again delivered one of his worst performances.

“I wish the outcome had been different. I wish I could have gotten out of here with a win,” he said. “But I don’t think [last year]A whole new situation, a new place, everything new.

About a minute later, Wentz got up from the prayer wheel, ripped off his beard, and ran toward the tunnel. Towards a booing and uncertain future.

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