Now that we know who and when the Washington Commanders will square off against in the 2023-24 NFL regular season, it’s time to stack up which games could be potential stumbling blocks for the franchise.
With the franchise coming off six straight .500 or worse seasons and Washington’s last 10-win season being 11 years ago, there’s reason to believe the Ron Rivera-coached club’s best days are in the past.
That said, oddsmakers at BetMGM Sportsbook Virginia are riding high on Washington in their regular season opener at least, with the Commanders listed as a 5.5-point favorite and a -250 moneyline in a home game against Arizona in Week 1 on Sept. 10. Look for a BetMGM Virginia bonus code ahead of time.
The team’s NFC and Super Bowl futures aren’t nearly as rosy, however, with BetMGM listing Washington at +3000 to win the NFC and +6600 to capture the team’s first title since the 1991-92 season.
We asked our NFL experts to create a point system to determine the toughest three-game stretch of the Commanders' 2023-24 schedule. For points, we awarded one to four points for each grouping of eight teams in the final standings from the 2022-23 season (Chiefs = four pts, Bears = one point), two points for an away game, two points for a short week (going into TNF game or coming off MNF), two points for an international game, one point for a divisional game and one point for a primetime game.
Which Period Of Commanders Schedule Is Toughest In 2023?
Commanders Will Learn a Lot Early
With home games against 13-win Buffalo and a revamped Chicago team offset by a road clash against the defending NFC champion Eagles on the docket, there’s little doubt Washington’s Week 3-5 run will pit them as betting underdogs at VA sportsbooks.
In 15 games against the Bills, the Commanders have gone 5-10 overall, with their last victory coming in 2015, when they beat Buffalo, 37-24 in Landover.
Washington is 3-9 in their last 12 games against the Eagles, by comparison, with the Commanders’ splitting last year’s two-game series against Philadelphia by winning at Lincoln Financial Field on Nov. 14, 32-21.
By comparison, the Commanders are 23-21-1 all time against the Bears, with Washington winning eight of their last nine games against Chicago dating back to 2004.
Last year, Washington won a 12-7 contest at Soldier Field that saw the team’s combine for more turnovers (two) than touchdowns (one).
If the Commanders can come away with a Thursday Night Football victory over Chicago on Oct. 5, then Washington will likely stand tall as a darkhorse NFC East contender.
If the team stumbles against the Bills, Eagles and Bears, then that road to redemption gets much longer, setting the franchise up for a seventh straight .500 or worse season in 2023.
If you're looking to make a smart decision on which VA sportsbooks suit you best ahead of the NFL season, check out our expert reviews of Virginia sports betting apps.