Through seven games, Washington is somehow in playoff contention. If that is going to continue, then these three members of the roster have to turn it up after the team returns from their bye.
Since losing Matt Ioannidis to a season-ending biceps injury, Washington's defense has lacked consistent interior pressure. Tim Settle has notched two sacks while filling in for Ioannidis, and that can't be ignored, but if the D-line is going to really dominate in the coming weeks, Allen is going to have to lead that effort in the middle.
In seven games, Allen has posted a sack-and-a-half and three quarterback hits. Those are decent pass rushing numbers for a defensive tackle, and he certainly contributes against the run, but the fourth-year, former first-rounder needs to be felt more in passing situations.
Montez Sweat is putting in serious work on the edge, and Chase Young is popping a fair amount as well. If Allen can get hot and show up more in the quarterback's face, then Washington's pass rush will be a suffocating force to deal with.
Fuller has four picks in 2020. He's already tied his career high with that number and is one of the NFL's leaders in that category. And he somehow needs to do more?
In Washington's win over Dallas, Landon Collins suffered an Achilles injury that'll sideline him the rest of the year. That means Fuller is now the secondary's unquestioned leader. He was already the unit's best coverage option and most productive player, and now, he's going to have to keep everyone organized and together.
Fuller's been performing at a Pro Bowl level so far in his second go-round with the franchise. Going beyond that, if possible, would be a big deal.
The third-round rookie has been getting better... and better... and better as he continues to settle in at running back. His performance against the Cowboys was his most complete outing yet and showed that he absolutely can be the main weapon in an NFL backfield.
Therefore, much like Fuller, Gibson isn't on this list because he's someone who's struggled up to this point and it's time for him to bounce back. Instead, he just has to keep ascending and put an exclamation mark on his first pro season.
Terry McLaurin is doing everything he can at wide receiver. Gibson stepping up more would ease the load on McLaurin's shoulders and give Scott Turner another explosive threat. He's on that track, but he can't avoid to stray from it. Gibson needs to keep running for first downs and touchdowns and not run into any sort of rookie wall.