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Commanders vs. Jaguars preview | Washington prepares to take on two No. 1 overall picks

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The Washington Commanders are kicking off the 2022 season by hosting the Jacksonville Jaguars. Here's everything you need to know about the game, presented by Ticketmaster, the official ticketing partner of the Washington Commanders.

GAME INFORMATION

Date: Sept. 11

Time: 1 p.m.

Location: FedExField (Landover, Maryland)

WATCH: FOX

  • Chris Myers (play-by-play)
  • Robert Smith (analyst)
  • Jen Hale (sideline)

RADIO:

  • Julie Donaldson (Host)
  • Bram Weinstein (play-by-play)
  • London Fletcher (analyst)
  • Washington Commanders Radio on the Washington Commanders Broadcast network can be heard on BIG 100 (WBIG-FM), the flagship station for Washington Commanders Football. Download the free iHeartRadio app or ask your smart device to "play BIG 100 on iHeartRadio." Check out the Washington Commanders Radio Network affiliates, HERE.

QUICK HITS

  • The Commanders will open their season at home Week 1 vs. the Jacksonville Jaguars. It is the first time the Commanders will ever play the Jaguars in a Week 1 matchup.
  • The Commanders will open at home for the third consecutive season for the first time since 2015-17.
  • It will be the 37th time Washington has opened the season at home. The club is 18-18 in the previous 36 Week 1 home matchups.
  • The Commanders open their season against an AFC South team for the first time since 2014, when the team opened at Houston. It is the first time Washington will play an AFC South team in Week 1 at home since hosting the Houston Oilers in 1979 at RFK Stadium.
  • Washington is 6-1 against the Jaguars all-time and 3-0 against the club at home. Washington last played and defeated the Jaguars in Jacksonville in Week 15 of the 2018 season.

COACHING STAFF

Washington:

  • Head coach Ron Rivera (3rd season in Washington)
  • Offensive coordinator Scott Turner (3rd)
  • Defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio (3rd)
  • Special teams coordinator Nate Kaczor (4th)

Jacksonville:

  • Head coach Doug Pederson (1st in Jacksonville)
  • Offensive coordinator Press Taylor (1st)
  • Defensive coordinator Mike Caldwell (1st)
  • Special teams coordinator Heath Farwell (1st)

The 8-month-old English black Labrador retriever is in the midst of training to become a service dog through veterans service organization K9s for Warriors. (Photos by Emilee Fails, Kourtney Carroll, and Joseph Noyes/Washington Commanders)

BEHIND ENEMY LINES

Here's what Jaguars Senior Staff Writer John Oehser had to say about Sunday's matchup:

-- What has the Doug Pederson experience been like so far:

"When you switch coaches a couple of times in a brief period, you sort of feel like there's a quest for calmness, and that's really what Doug Peterson's brought. I'm not sure the Washington team has been through anything like what the Jaguars went through with Urban Meyer, but it was a very tumultuous season, made a lot of news for the wrong reasons. Then [he] also didn't win on the field. So Doug Peterson really came in February when he got the job, strikingly up front about the need to create trust, the need to create a new culture. And all coaches talk about that. It was really an urgent situation in Jacksonville to get the players' back trust in the head coach, the direction, etcetera. I think fans of the commanders probably have watched Doug Peterson enough in the past to get some sort of vibe for what he is. And he's sort of what you see is what you get.

-- Trevor Lawrence didn't have the year that a lot of people expected, but how have you seen him be receptive to the new coaching staff and new philosophy:

"You hate to 'allow a guy a pass' or an excuse for a rookie year, but he clearly didn't have the rookie or he wanted. He had 12 touchdowns and 17 interceptions, but it was really hard to judge very much that happened last year. Where you really saw Trevor look like a franchise guy was off the field, how he handled it. He really became the team spokesman second half of the season, which is tough for a 21-year-old, 22-year-old, who is not playing well in the field. But the maturity that this kid has is off the charts. I've seen nothing during training camp to make you think he can't play, he's got the skill set. He's still learning how to be an NFL quarterback in terms of reading defenses, how to prepare, how to study his work ethic is off the charts. I think he's still in that transition from college to pro that, frankly, most college quarterbacks go through or most incoming early drafted quarterbacks go through.

-- How have Christian Kirk and Evan Engram impacted the offense?

They look like they're gonna add speed primarily. They also signed to guy him, Zay Jones, from  the Las Vegas Raiders, who didn't get quite as much off season hype, but Christian Kirk and Marvin Jones are their top three receivers. They're all little similar, smallish guys who can all run. What they really give Trevor that he didn't have last year is reliable guys who can get open in key situations. I don't know that any of them are the No. 1 guy who are gonna have about 13 touchdowns and a bunch of downfield stuff. But last year with Trevor, it was hard to know for him who his go-to guys were, where he was gonna go on third down this year. Kirk and both Joneses and even Ingram fits into this.

-- How has Travon Walker adapted to the NFL and what role will he play?

"He's a guy who was a little bit of a surprise pick at No. 1 because there wasn't really a clear cut number one overall pick last year. They went with him because his talent, his physical traits. If you look at this guy, even people who've been around a lot of impressive physical NFL players are wowed by this guy's length, his size. The way he looks in a uniform is incredibly impressive. His work ethic is off the charts, his strength that the line of scrimmage is off the charts. They haven't had a moment of doubt since he came in that he was the right pick. That all starts to be proven on Sunday. Nothing that's happened so far matters, but he was impressive in the preseason, looks like he fits. The book on him is [that] he will be very effective and very good and very natural, very quickly as a run defender. He's going to help them set the edge. He's not gonna get overwhelmed physically in the NFL. The question on him is, 'Does he have pass rush? Does he have the details of being an NFL pass-rusher, the moves, all the things that you have to learn over time?'"

-- What are your thoughts on Tyson Campbell and is he the best suite defensive back on the Jaguars' roster to match up against Terry McLaurin?

The storyline around Tyson Campbell is he was the No. 33 overall pick in 2021, struggled a lot in the first two or three games last year and then really came on to where in the last 13, 14 games of the season, he played like a guy who may be able to step up and be a No. 1 corner in this league. At some point, he's gotta prove that this year, but he has looked very good in preseason training camp. If they're gonna travel somebody with guys this year, it may be time to start trying Tyson Campbell with that. He's definitely a guy who can make plays. He had two picks last year. I would anticipate that number going up. If there's a guy in the secondary you have to watch for as a Washington fan to make plays and turn games around, it's probably Tyson Campbell.

INDIVIDUAL STAT LEADERS (2021)

Washington:

  • Passing Yards -- QB Taylor Heinicke (3,419)
  • Passing TDs -- QB Taylor Heinicke (20)
  • Rushing Yards -- RB Antonio Gibson (1,037)
  • Rushing TDs -- RB Antonio Gibson (7)
  • Receiving Yards -- WR Terry McLaurin (1,053)
  • Receiving TDs -- WR Terry McLaurin (5)
  • Tackles -- LB Cole Holcomb (142)
  • Sacks -- DT Jonathan Allen (9)
  • Interceptions -- S Bobby McCain (4)

Jacksonville:

  • Passing Yards -- QB Trevor Lawrence (3,641)
  • Passing TDs -- QB Trevor Lawrence (12)
  • Rushing Yards -- RB James Robinson (767)
  • Rushing TDs -- RB James Robinson (8)
  • Receiving Yards -- WR Marvin Jones Jr. (832)
  • Receiving TDs -- WR Marvin Jones Jr. (4)
  • Tackles -- LB Myles Jack (108)
  • Sacks -- LB Josh Allen (7.5)
  • Interceptions -- CB Tyson Campbell (2)

Current and former players alike were honored during the Washington Commanders' 60th Welcome Home Luncheon at MGM National Harbor on Sept. 1. Check out all the highlights from the day. (Photos by Emilee Fails and Kourtney Carroll/Washington Commanders)

TEAM STATS (2021)

Washington:

  • Total offense -- 21st (323.6 YPG)
  • Scoring offense -- 23rd (19.7 PPG)
  • Passing offense -- 22nd (202.4 YPG)
  • Sacks allowed -- 23rd (2.5 PG)
  • Rushing offense -- 11th (121.7 YPG)
  • Third-down offense -- 20th (38.8%)
  • Total defense -- 22nd (359.3 YPG)
  • Scoring defense -- 25th (25.5 PPG)
  • Passing defense -- 29th (254.9 YPG)
  • Sacks -- 22nd (2.2 PG)
  • Rushing defense -- 8th (104.4 YPG)
  • Third-down defense -- 31st (48.5%)
  • Time of possession -- 10th (30:43)
  • Turnover differential -- 24th (-5)

Jacksonville:

  • Total offense -- 27th (305.4 YPG)
  • Scoring offense -- 32nd (14.9 PPG)
  • Passing offense -- 23rd (202.1 YPG)
  • Sacks allowed -- 10th (1.9 PG)
  • Rushing offense -- 22nd (103.2 YPG)
  • Third-down offense -- 28th (35.8%)
  • Total defense -- 20th (353.1 YPG)
  • Scoring defense -- 28th (26.9 PPG)
  • Passing defense -- 17th (227.9 YPG)
  • Sacks -- T-25th (1.9 PG)
  • Rushing defense -- 22nd (125.1 YPG)
  • Third-down defense -- 25th (43%)
  • Time of possession -- 31st (27:21)
  • Turnover differential -- 32nd (-20)

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