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Commanders to start QB Carson Wentz vs. Browns in Week 17

Ron Rivera is turning back to Carson Wentz to lead the Washington Commanders' playoff push.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday morning that Wentz will start Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, per sources informed of the situation. The team later confirmed the move.

Rivera said Wednesday that he's "looking for a bit of a spark" in regards to the switch. The Commanders coach planned to announce the starter Wednesday after benching Taylor Heinicke for Wentz midway through Saturday's loss to San Francisco.

"I just want to make sure I'm able to speak to everybody before I make a decision," Rivera said Tuesday. "I want to make sure I have all the thoughts and ideas and concepts. Again, at the end of the day, the decision is going to be made based on what I believe is best for us going forward and I think gives us the best opportunity right now."

Rivera turns back to Wentz, who suffered a broken finger in Week 6 that sent the QB to injured reserve, after riding Heinicke to the precipice of a playoff bid.

The Commanders started 5-1-1 with Heinicke under center, driving their way back into postseason position following a 2-4 start to the season under Wentz.

Rivera kept Heinicke at the helm even after Wentz was cleared from injury, but back-to-back losses to the Giants and Niners led to Wentz getting his job back. Heinicke provided a spark, but Washington needs better than the 206.5 yards per game passing he provided during his nine-game run.

The move back to Wentz isn't surprising after Rivera benched Heinicke following an early fourth-quarter interception against San Francisco. The coach wouldn't have made that decision if he wasn't planning to finish the season with Wentz under center.

Now it's Wentz's chance to save the day in Washington and write a redemption story.

The 7-7-1 Commanders are clinging to a half-game lead for the final wild-card spot over Seattle, Detroit and Green Bay with two games to play against Cleveland and Dallas. Win out, and Washington is in the postseason.

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