DaRon Bland’s Pick-Six Record Is Impressive, But The Commanders Should Be Thrown In Jail For Their Efforts To Stop Him

Commanders Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys cornerback DaRon Bland now owns the single-season record for most pick-sixes with five, which is merely one more stat you can add to the pile of how bad Kenny Pickett is. In other words, Bland has five TDs in 2023; Pickett has thrown for six.

Jim Nantz’s call on Bland’s latest victim was electric. No denying how impressive of an achievement this is. Why anyone would continue to try this man is beyond me.

…And that’s what I want to talk about. Everyone’s hung up on comparing Bland’s number of touchdowns to prominent offensive players who are failing to produce. My thing is, the effort here from the Washington Commanders is a microcosm of their entire team.

First of all, Sam Howell? My dude. Throwing with anticipation outside the numbers is good in theory. Doing so with, like, zero velocity and lobbing out the baseball equivalent of a hanging curve to give Bland the INT on a silver platter is just dumb. Undercutting an out-breaking route is the most likely way to achieve a pick-six.

It’s a 38-10 game. What are we doing even attempting this pass in the first place? You’re already getting throttled by a division rival in front of the entire country on Thanksgiving. What the actual f*ck is this play? Terrible oversight by Eric Bieniemy to dial this up.

Most appalling to me is the effort with which the Commanders tried to tackle Bland once he started racing down the sidelines. Howell has some decent wheels. He was right there. Took a good angle. Had the sideline to box Bland out into. Somehow let him cut back inside and just crumbled to the turf. I know Howell doesn’t play defense. Nevertheless, flat-out poor form is about the nicest thing I can say.

Haters will say Sam should eat more meat.

To be fair to the young franchise QB hopeful, Howell was, as usual, under duress the entire day behind Washington’s-pass-blocking unit. Had to be a little punch drunk by this point to chuck up such a softball. Don’t think it has much to do with nutrition.

At least Howell set up not one, but two teammates to bring Bland down before he crossed the goal line. Terry McLaurin was in a dead sprint to catch up to the Cowboys corner; tailback Brian Robinson closed in and looked like he had a clean shot as well. Alas, McLaurin and Robinson smash into each other in a case of friendly fire. Boom. Bland has the record.

Credit Scary Terry for hustling. I’d have been too demoralized to do so if I were him. The Commanders flat-out can’t get him the ball. He had four catches for 50 yards on eleven targets. How bad at play design and quarterbacking do you have to be to target McLaurin that many times and only hook it up on four occasions? Woof.

Defense was mostly to blame for Washington’s blowout loss in Dallas. Or more specifically, trading away your two best pass-rushers isn’t helping anyone. But like…Bland’s pick-six record was maybe the one thing you could’ve tried to prevent to save a little face on an already-embarrassing afternoon. Alas, the Commanders failed at that, too.

Beyond this late-game fiasco, the Cowboys piled up 18 additional fourth-quarter points.

They just fired Jack Del Rio but how does Ron Rivera still have a job as of Friday morning? I think new owner Josh Harris is just letting this sh*t show play out so he can have clear-cut reasons for firing the current Washington regime. An ownership change was the first step in a necessary culture shift for this franchise. Next will be a coaching staff and front office overhaul this offseason.

When your team doesn’t care enough to stop DaRon Bland’s pick-six record, much less you have a defensive head coach whose squad can’t play a lick of defense, it might be time for wholesale changes.

Side note: I love how every time Bland has taken one to the house this season against his latest piss-poor quarterback that the broadcast always cuts up to the box where Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn sits. He’s always just fist-pumping the air and cackling like a mustache-twirling movie villain. Or at least I imagine him to be. Please do more of these, DaRon Bland!

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock