Analysis: Commanders ugly on and off the field

Oct 13, 2022, 2:58 PM | Updated: Oct 14, 2022, 2:59 am
FILE - Washington Commanders' Dan Snyder poses for photos during an event to unveil the NFL footbal...

FILE - Washington Commanders' Dan Snyder poses for photos during an event to unveil the NFL football team's new identity, Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2022, in Landover, Md. The Washington Commanders are denying the contents of a report by ESPN detailing Dan Snyder's efforts to influence other NFL owners and the league office to keep control of the team. In a statement sent to The Associated Press on Thursday, Oct. 13, a Commanders spokesperson called it “categorically untrue” and “clearly part of a well-funded, two-year campaign to coerce the sale of the team, which will continue to be unsuccessful.” (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

The dysfunctional Washington Commanders are ugly on and off the field.

A day that began with a detailed report about Dan Snyder’s toxic ownership ended with a sloppy 12-7 victory over the Chicago Bears in front of a national television audience Thursday night.

Don’t let the victory fool you. The Commanders (2-4) were losers the minute ESPN reported, citing anonymous sources, that Snyder has hired private investigators and told people he has enough information to expose fellow owners and Commissioner Roger Goodell.

There is no plan to vote on Snyder’s status next week at the owners’ meetings in New York, according to three people with knowledge of the agenda. The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because the discussions are private.

Forcing Snyder to sell the team requires 24 votes from the other 31 owners. It’s not a simple task despite the latest stain against him.

Snyder and the organization are currently the subject of ongoing investigations by the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Reform and former U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White, who is conducting a new review on behalf of the NFL.

Once those reports are filed, owners could try to seek removal. Meanwhile, public pressure will continue to mount against Snyder, who has been accused of workplace sexual harassment, potentially unlawful financial conduct, deceptive business practice, among other improprieties.

During the Amazon Prime Video broadcast, play-by-play announcer Al Michaels said: “Just my feeling, I think what the league would love is for Snyder to sell the team. Not have to go to a vote, but just sell the team. Because it’s become a major problem around the league, obviously. And we’ll see what happens. I think it’s got a long way to go, and Dan, very well known for digging his heels into the ground.”

Snyder watched from a suite at Soldier Field as his team put aside all the distractions and barely held on for a win by 1 yard, snapping a four-game losing streak.

“With the distractions going around, we don’t pay attention to any of that,” linebacker Jamin Davis said. “As a locker room, as a team, we really pay attention to what we have in front of us and going forward that’s how it’s going to be.”

Coach Ron Rivera, who created a different distraction earlier in the week when he blamed quarterback Carson Wentz for the team being last in the NFC East, walked out of his postgame news conference after referring to part of ESPN’s report that said it was Snyder’s decision to acquire Wentz.

“They’ve played their (butts) off. They have,” Rivera said about his team. “They come out and show up. They work hard. They don’t complain. They hear all this stuff and they got to deal with it. I get that. I respect them for it. They’re resilient. They come back. Everybody keeps wanting to say I didn’t want anything to do with Carson. … I’m the …. guy that pulled out the sheets of paper, that looked at the analytics, and watched the tape when we were in Indianapolis (at the combine). That’s what pisses me off because the young man doesn’t deserve to have that all the time.”

None of the Commanders deserve to deal with the series of scandals and investigations that surround the man who signs their paychecks.


AP Sports Writer Stephen Whyno contributed to this report.


More AP NFL: and

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


FILE - Mikaela Shiffrin, of the United States, reacts after falling in the women's combined slalom ...
Associated Press

Shiffrin shifts from record chase to medal races at worlds

Perspective. The big picture. Dealing with both success and failure. Mikaela Shiffrin did a lot of soul searching after she didn’t win a medal and didn’t finish three of her five individual races at last year’s Beijing Olympics after entering the games amid enormous expectations. Her takeaways? “Accept a little bit more that sometimes things […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Latvia considers Olympic boycott if Russians compete

RIGA, Latvia (AP) — Latvia will consider boycotting next year’s Paris Olympics if athletes from Russia and its ally Belarus are allowed to take part after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. While various governments in Europe, including Latvia, have condemned the International Olympic Committee’s push to allow Russians and Belarusians to compete, and Ukraine has threatened […]
1 day ago
New Orleans Pelicans guard Trey Murphy III, right, goes up for a basket as Denver Nuggets guard Jam...
Associated Press

Murray, Jokic help Nuggets hold off Pelicans 122-113

DENVER (AP) — Jamal Murray is locked in right now — with his shot, with his swagger and especially with his confidence in his team. “It’s fun to play basketball,” the Denver point guard said. “But we still have room to improve. We’re not satisfied with where we’re at.” Murray scored 32 points, Nikola Jokic […]
1 day ago
FILE - Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner (42) drives past Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (...
Associated Press

Griner’s return, free agency raises charter flight concerns

Brittney Griner’s return to the WNBA this summer after being traded in a dramatic prisoner swap in December with Russia has collided with free agency, creating potential travel complications for the league out of safety concerns for her. If Griner, who is a free agent but has said she’ll return to Phoenix, needs special travel […]
1 day ago
Milwaukee Bucks' Khris Middleton drives past Charlotte Hornets' Terry Rozier during the second half...
Associated Press

Bucks beat Hornets 124-115 for 5th consecutive victory

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Khris Middleton is making the most of his limited minutes as he works his way back from injuries that kept him from playing for much of the season. Middleton scored 18 points and sparked a third-quarter run that put the Milwaukee Bucks ahead for good as they beat the Charlotte Hornets 124-115 […]
1 day ago
Los Angeles Clippers guard Paul George, right, slaps the ball away from Chicago Bulls forward DeMar...
Associated Press

Leonard, Powell lead Clippers past Bulls, 108-103

CHICAGO (AP) — Kawhi Leonard scored 33 points and Norman Powell added 27 to help the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Chicago Bulls 108-103 on Tuesday night. Paul George added 16 points and 10 rebounds for the Clippers, who’ve won six of seven. Nikola Vucevic had 23 points and 14 rebounds to lead the Bulls, […]
1 day ago
Analysis: Commanders ugly on and off the field