Technically, Benjamin St-Juste could talk trash to opposing wide receivers in French since he grew up in Montreal, Canada. That would certainly throw players off, the cornerback mused in a one-on-one interview with Julie Donaldson, but you will not hear St-Juste spewing French profanities any time soon. He prefers to look his play do the talking.
Against the Philadelphia Eagles, his play was speaking loudly.
The 24-8 loss at the hands of the Eagles was not the outcome anyone playing for the Washington Commanders hoped for, but St-Juste was one of the clear bright spots on defense. He finished the game with three tackles and three pass breakups while working against the Eagles' top receivers, DeVonta Smith and A.J. Brown.
It was a nice moment for St-Juste, who needed to step up with William Jackson III being ruled out ahead of the game, but for the second-year defensive back, that is the kind of performance he should have every week.
"It's expected for me to go out there and perform like that every weekend," St-Juste said. "It's very tough to be consistent every weekend, but if I can put up a performance like that in most of the games, that gives us, as a team, the better chance to win."
St-Juste has seen growth in his skill set dating back to training camp, when he was placed in a new role as the team's primary defensive back in the slot. The coaching staff likes his combination of length and quickness, which allows him to match up well against a variety of receivers.
With more of the spotlight placed on him, St-Juste received the highest grade on the team from Pro Football Focus with a 78.4. St-Juste most often found himself lined up against Smith, and two of his most impressive moments prevented Smith from making big plays. He kept Smith from bringing in a touchdown at the start of the second quarter, and he deflected another pass in the second half that would have put the Eagles inside the Commanders' 10-yard line.
Still, Smith finished with a career high 169 yards, which speaks to the Commanders' issues against explosive plays. That is one of St-Juste's biggest concerns, but he also believes that those moments are the result of minor, fixable mistakes.
"It's really about details," St-Juste said. "It's really about maybe just one step too much on the outside, one step too much on the inside. So that's why we're not too worried about...everything that's being said on the outside, because we know it's just basic, fundamental stuff."
St-Juste and the Commanders will have another opportunity to show they can fix those mistakes against the Cowboys on Oct. 2. He missed both matchup as a rookie, but he knows to expect a fight on Sunday.
"Those division games, they're nothing like regular games," St-Juste said. "It's gonna be an all-out game where everybody's gonna give everything they got. So, we gotta go down there, handle our business and come out with a win.
Here's a morning roundup of what the local and national media have to say about the Washington Commanders on Friday, Sept. 30, 2022. All reports, rumors and conjecture are a reflection of the media conversation and are not endorsed or confirmed by the Washington Commanders.
The reports and deals expressed in this article have not been confirmed by Washington, nor do they reflect any insider information from anyone in the front office.
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala writes about Daron Payne explaining what it takes to get to the quarterback.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier writes about Terry McLaurin's targets in the first quarter.
- The Washington Time's Matthew Paras writes about the offensive line facing the Cowboys' defensive front.
- The Washington Time's Matthew Paras reports on the Commanders unveiling their all-black uniforms.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux writes about the Commanders facing Micah Parsons and the Cowboys' pass rush.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey writes about Antonio Gibson's usage in the offense.
- The Athletic's Cole Huff looks at what the experts are saying ahead of the Commanders' Week 4 game against the Cowboys.
- The Washington Times' Matthew Paras looks at Terry McLaurin's stats in the first three games.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux also writes about the use of McLaurin early in the season.
- ESPN's John Keim looks at what the Commanders offense hopes to be.
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala writes about the list of issues the Commanders need to fix.
- The Washington Time's Jacob Calvin Meyer writes that Dak Prescott will "probably not" play against the Commanders on Sunday.
- The Washington Time's Matthew Paras writes about how better performances on first down can help the Commanders.
- NBC Sports Washington's Peter Hailey opens his mailbox to answer questions from Commanders fans.
- The Athletic's Ben Standig writes about the Commanders' evolving search for their offensive identity.
- The Washington Times' Matthew Paras gives his take on how the Commanders offense can improve.
Check Out What's On Commanders.com:
- Practice report | Commanders remain confident in Gibson's skill set
- Coach Rivera surprised with custom shoes by El Snap in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month
- Commanders excited for matchups with Cowboys' top playmakers
- Practice report | Rivera calls Micah Parsons a 'special, dynamic' athlete
- Hail Mail | Turning the page to Dallas
- Commanders vs. Cowboys preview | Heading south to the Lone Star State
- Commanders offense holds itself accountable for first half mishaps
- From the booth | Spilled milk can be cleaned up
- 3 numbers to know from Washington's Week 3 loss
- Commanders-Eagles Stats & Snaps
- Instant Analysis | Commanders offense struggles in 24-8 defeat
- 5 takeaways from Washington's Week 3 loss to Philadelphia
- Commanders-Eagles Stats & Snaps