DeAngelo Hall views the Commanders as a team that ‘never freaking evolves’

D-Hall views Commanders as a team that 'never freaking evolves' originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

At various times of late — like right after the 2021 season ended, at the Combine in early March and following the conclusion of the NFL Draft in late April — Ron Rivera has declared that the Commanders are ready to progress in a meaningful way and truly hold their own in the league.

Based off of a Wednesday radio interview, DeAngelo Hall doesn’t agree with that sentiment.

The longtime Washington corner joined 106.7 The Fan’s BMitch & Finlay show just as Philadelphia agreed to terms with free agent defensive back James Bradberry. That move that inspired Hall to go in on his former franchise.

“It’s going to be hard to beat the Eagles. They’re loading up,” Hall told the hosts. “And it’s frustrating as a fan when you see your team not loading up.”

The Commanders’ acquisition of Carson Wentz has altered the organization’s approach to the rest of its retooling. That’s what Rivera has voiced to the media, at least.

Wentz’s $28 million salary for the 2022 campaign is a hefty one, and that price tag has prevented the club from keeping some of its own contributors or finding more significant help out in the open, the coach has explained.

Hall, however, is put off by that stance.

“It’s that old school mindset: ‘This is how you build a team,'” Hall said. “No, there’s different ways to build a team.”

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From there, he really increased the criticism. 

“I just feel like when I watch this team, it never freaking evolves,” Hall said. “It stays the same. If you were successful doing something, instead of trying to go back and figure out what we did that worked, what we didn’t do that didn’t work, we just stay status quo and think, ‘All right, it’s going to be as simple as it was.'”

Aside from Wentz, Washington’s recent veteran additions are guard Andrew Norwell, guard Trai Turner, defensive end Efe Obada and receiver/returner Alex Erickson.

Norwell and Turner project as starters, and Obada should provide extra pass rush, but together, that’s a rather slender slew of signings — especially for a coach who’s fresh off of consecutive seven-win outputs.

Having established that, if last year’s underwhelming and/or injured players like Curtis Samuel, Chase Young, Logan Thomas, Montez Sweat, Jamin Davis and William Jackson III are collectively more impactful this time around, that’ll do wonders for Rivera and the Commanders.

Plus, while Hall clearly isn’t pleased with the lack of spending post-Wentz, the truth is Wentz will be an upgrade at quarterback over Taylor Heinicke, which alone should boost Washington’s competitiveness a solid amount.

Despite those factors, Hall refuses to think that the Commanders have acted aggressively enough to match up with their rivals and, in turn, foes across the NFL as a whole.

“You think of a lot of the coulda, shoulda, wouldas,” he said. “The price of winning the division has just gone up.”

With Wentz, the development of a few key pieces, a softer schedule and better injury luck, there’s absolutely a path for Rivera to prove doubters such as Hall wrong. If Rivera’s outfit fails to take the steps he’s been trumpeting, though, his hesitancy to further invest in his roster will be touched on by many other people beyond Hall.

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