In the unpredictable realm of the NFL, making snap judgments early in the season is like playing with fire, but sometimes, you can’t help but feel the heat. Enter the Washington Commanders, a team that’s been sparking conversations and turning heads, thanks in large part to their new offensive coordinator, Eric Bieniemy.

In just two weeks, the Commanders have managed to ignite a sense of hope and excitement that has long been missing from their fan base. But is it too soon to believe in this sudden resurgence? Let’s dive into the Bieniemy effect and how it’s reshaping the Washington Commanders.

Bieniemy, the former NFL running back turned offensive guru, was brought in by head coach Ron Rivera to breathe life into a stagnant offense. His mission was clear: dismantle the existing framework and rebuild it with his own vision, grounded in principles like effort, precision, and accountability. And let’s be honest, he ruffled quite a few feathers along the way.

The transformation, however, has been nothing short of remarkable. In a mere seven months since Bieniemy’s introduction to the franchise, the Commanders have shed their old skin and emerged as a new force in the league. Their offense, once a disarrayed mess, now stands firmly on the pillars of Bieniemy’s coaching philosophy.

But perhaps the most astonishing part of this turnaround is the partnership between Bieniemy and young quarterback Sam Howell. A 23-year-old with just one previous NFL start under his belt, Howell has stepped into the limelight under Bieniemy’s guidance. Together, they orchestrated a comeback that few saw coming.

The Commanders’ clash with the Denver Broncos served as a litmus test for both Bieniemy’s influence and Howell’s potential. Washington found themselves staring down an 18-point deficit, trailing 21-3 with under nine minutes left in the second quarter. But rather than crumble under the pressure, they fought back with a resolve that’s been missing for years.

So, what’s the secret sauce that’s making the Commanders sizzle? It’s a blend of Bieniemy’s coaching prowess and Howell’s youthful energy. They’ve unleashed a new identity for the team, one that refuses to bow to adversity.

As the Commanders prepare to face the Buffalo Bills, another high-scoring team, the stage is set for a showdown. Buffalo bounced back from a rough Monday Night Football outing with a dominant display against the Las Vegas Raiders. Meanwhile, Washington showcased their newfound offensive prowess by putting up an impressive 35 points against the Broncos.

But the journey to this point wasn’t without its share of skeptics. Many doubted the Commanders’ decision to entrust their offense to a quarterback drafted in the fifth round of the 2022 NFL Draft. The naysayers questioned how a fifth-rounder could lead a team to success in the NFL.

Yet, here we are, with Sam Howell boasting a perfect 3-0 record as a starting quarterback in the NFL. Howell isn’t just a game manager; he’s the driving force behind Washington’s newfound success. Sure, he’s made his fair share of mistakes, including taking too many sacks, but what sets him apart is his ability to bounce back from adversity.

While it may be premature to anoint Howell as the Commanders’ franchise quarterback, there’s ample reason for optimism. His resilience, poise under pressure, and ability to respond to setbacks are qualities shared by the league’s best quarterbacks. With Bieniemy’s guidance and Howell’s talent, the Commanders are forging a new path—one that might lead them to places they haven’t seen in a long time.

So, as we cautiously navigate the early stages of the NFL season, let’s keep an eye on the Commanders. They may not have set the world on fire just yet, but they’ve certainly ignited a spark of hope in the hearts of their fans. And in a league as unpredictable as the NFL, that spark might just turn into a roaring flame.