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Comparing Young's Trajectory to Clowney Post Injury | Washington Commanders

By Adam Aniba

Many Washington fans were surprised when the Commanders declined the 5th Year Option for Chase Young. The 2020 2nd overall selection is attempting to regain his Rookie of the Year form, where he registered 7.5 sacks in 15 games.

His week #9 injury vs Tampa Bay (11/14/21), in which he tore his ACL and Patellar tendon could still threaten his long term ceiling.

Although Chase looked energized when activated in late December '22 vs the 49ers and is still young, the start to his career is similar to another franchise defensive end.

2014 1st overall selection Jadeveon Clowney also suffered a severe knee injury. His injury occurred only 4 weeks into his rookie season with the Texans and required microfracture surgery.

Although Clowney has bounced around the league since leaving Houston, he's been pretty durable playing in 109 career games.

During his first three seasons Young played in 27 games, registering

75 tak, 9 sacks, 7 PD, 6 FF and 17 QB hits. Clowney's numbers were similar, in the 31 games played in his first 3 seasons (hurt week #4 rookie season microfracture surgery) he registered 99 tak, 10.5 sacks, 8 PD, 2 FF & 25 QB hits.

Although Clowney's career hasn't lived up to expectations for a 1st overall pick, he's heading into his 9th season and is still viewed as a viable staring caliber pass rusher.

Many fans have already written off Young and have been vocal about their desire to trade him. Defensive Line Coach Jeff Zgonina had a hand in the progression of Daron Payne, who registered a career high 11.5 sacks last season and signed a 4-year $90M deal this offseason.

Coach Z clearly worked on counters/passing rushing moves with Payne and these are aspects of Young's game that need a work.

Many question if Young can regain his pre-injury form. Although the similarities between Young and Clowney's carer trajectories can't be ignored, the former Buckeye has the supporting cast and coaching staff that should get the best out of him this season and hopefully beyond.

1 comment

1 Comment

Well, I’ma hold out for HOPE still.

Reminds me of the RGM3 debacle. How much WORSE would it be to Watch him Flourish under Diff OWNERSHIP! When WE are Soo Close to ‘being Them’ now too!!

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