Jeremy Reaves has noticed a difference in his game as he gears up for his fifth season in Washington.
"Confident. I think that's been my approach since OTAs, just have a confidence about me," Reaves said.
He has felt like he's reading situations faster, playing with a sense of assuredness in his next move. His teammates have been impressed by the work he has put in. Speaking on the strides members of secondary have made, Bobby McCain called Reaves, "one of the smartest guys in the back end."
The gains, Reaves will tell you, are deeply tied to a loss -- one of the most profound and soul-shaking ones he has ever experienced. In November 2021, the 25-year-old's mother passed away.
"My mom was my biggest fan," Reaves said. "She was always telling me, just be sure of myself…don't try to do too much, do what you know you're capable of. So, I've kind of just took that approach. It's a sense of calm. I'm not out there panicking, I'm not out there seeing too much."
The sport's lifelong association with his mother made stepping out on the field healing for him last season.
"It was probably the best thing for me, honestly," the safety said. "I need something to keep me going, and I know my mom would've wanted me to keep going. Just put my best foot forward every day. Trying to honor her the best way I can, and that was really how I got through it all."
As a source of distraction and a way of staying connected to his late mom, football has been therapeutic for Reaves in the ongoing grieving process. It has also provided an environment full of people who care about him and want to be by his side.
"These guys, this building, the staff, my teammates, I mean, without them, I don't know what last year would've been like for me, honestly," Reaves said. "It was the most support I've ever received in my life."
Here's a morning roundup of what the local and national media have to say about the Washington Commanders on Thursday, August 25, 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.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux writes about the return of OG Wes Martin.
- NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux also writes that the Commanders' starters will play "very limited" in the third preseason game.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier writes about the friendly locker room golf competition among the quarterbacks.
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala writes that Darrick Forrest is ready to "boom every time."
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala and Sam Fortier report on the news about Chase Young being placed on the Reserve/PUP list.
- NBC Sports Washington's Pete Hailey writes about Camaron Cheeseman making the second-yard leap.
- NBC Sports Washington's Pete Hailey also writes about the Ravens' win streak not being a priority for the Commanders.
- The Washington Time's Matthew Paras writes about Ron Rivera wanting the defensive line to step up.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier writes about the return of Logan Thomas.
- The Athletic's Dan Pompei writes about the transformational quality of Terry McLaurin.
- NBC Sports Washington's Pete Hailey writes about Washington's dynamic running back room.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier gives his takeaways following the preseason loss against the Chiefs.
- NBC Sports Washington's Pete Hailey offers some interesting insight into Commanders mouthpiece usage.
- The Washington Post's Sam Fortier writes about what could lie ahead in Jahan Dotson's rookie season.
- NBC Sports Washington's Bijan Todd writes about Brian Robinson Jr. ball security and run style.
- The Richmond-Times Dispatch's Michael Phillip writes about coach Jennifer King's offseason development.
- NBC Sports Washington's Bijan Todd also writes about how Phidarian Mathis is no stranger to patience.
- The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala writes about Jonathan Allen's mentality after his Pro Bowl-caliber season.
The Washington Commanders had a lighter practice on Wednesday as they continue their preparation for their final preseason game. Check out the top photos from the afternoon. Photos by Emilee Fails and Kourtney Carroll/Washington Commanders
Check Out What's On Commanders.com:
- Practice report | Logan Thomas hits another milestone, participates in 7-on-7 drills
- 'A dream come true': Casey Toohill takes advantage of chances to learn from Ryan Kerrigan
- Practice report | players begin final push to make 53-man roster
- From the booth | Putting the preseason into perspective
- Washington Commanders to retire Sonny Jurgensen's jersey against Dallas Cowboys in Week 18
- Logan Thomas looks forward to full contact, building chemistry with Carson Wentz
- Practice report | Logan Thomas takes next step in recovery
- 5 takeaways from Washington's preseason loss to Kansas City.
- Numbers to know from Washington's second preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs
- Media roundup | Rivera wants defense to be 'more disciplined' on third-down defense
- Instant Analysis | Commanders fall to 0-2 in 'dress rehearsal' game against the Chiefs
- 3 standouts from Week 4 of Commanders training camp
- 3 keys for Washington's preseason game against the Chiefs
- J.D. McKissic stays steady in Commanders' packed RB room
- Training Camp Notebook | Diving into Jahan Dotson, Antonio Gibson's possible roles on special teams
- Media roundup | Nate Kaczor breaks down kick return duties
- Training Camp Notebook | Rivera dives deeper into Commanders' DE Depth
- Hail Mail | Weighing Washington's options at WR
- From the booth | We all needed to see something
- Training Camp Notebook | Jahan Dotson grabbed two red zone TDs, defensive line disruptive on Day 16
- Media roundup | 'These past two days have been a delight' for Curtis Samuel