The Redskins fired their head coach Jay Gruden back on October 7th after an 0-5 start to the season. Bill Callahan took over as the interim head coach in place of Gruden, and while he helped elevate the team’s play over the latter part of the season, there was never any real chance for him to lock down the gig on an official basis.
So, while other NFL teams are just gathering their list of candidates to interview as a potential fit for their coaching vacancy, Washington was zeroed in on their man for the job moments after the conclusion of Week 17. On Tuesday, they came to terms with their new coach.
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Redskins Ink Ron Rivera as New Head Coach
The Washington Redskins have been the epitome of mediocrity for years on end. Apart from a few flash in the pan seasons, the team has been one of the bottom-dwelling franchises in football. Since 2007, Washington has compiled a meager two winning seasons.
However, they believe that they’ve finally found the man that will help them recapture the glory days from the Joe Gibbs era.
Former Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera, and his wife Stephanie, took a flight to Northern Virginia early Monday morning to meet with team officials, dine with former U.S. President Barack Obama, and knock out a contract to ink him in as the Redskins’ new head coach. On Tuesday that’s exactly what happened, as Rivera and the team came to terms on a contact, According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Rivera will be announced the team’s head coach tomorrow, becoming the ninth man to hold the gig since the 2000 season.
Rivera is a Slam Dunk Hire for the Redskins
Rivera carries with him a rock-solid proven track record, while also being one of the most highly regarded coaches in all football. He will be a great addition to a Washington team and front office that has been the butt of many jokes over the past decade or so.
While serving as the Panthers head coach from 2011-2019, he enjoyed four winning seasons, including a Super Bowl berth back in 2015, where he led the team to a 15-1 regular season record. Along Rivera’s Carolina tenure, the new head man in Washington captured not one, but two AP NFL Coach of the Year Awards (2013, 2015).
Rivera’s winning pedigree goes far beyond his time in Carolina, as he coached a Chicago Bears defense to a Super Bowl appearance in 2006, while also hoisting a Lombardi Trophy in 1985 as a player for the Bears.
Rivera will have his hands full in Washington, as Dan Snyder has been known to run a dysfunctional organization. However, with Bruce Allen out of town, Rivera will have a chance to mold his own team, his way.
The coach will have a plethora of solid puzzle pieces to build a winning team. Quarterback Dwayne Haskins has shown promise over the second half of the season. While his trio of three talented young receivers (Terry McLaurin, Kelvin Harmon, and Steven Sims Jr.) should only further his development in year two. Plus, Derrius Guice, while injury-prone, has proven to be a highly effective and explosive runner when on the field. Sprinkle in a solid defensive-front and Rivera’s defensive background, and Washington has a chance to build something special under their new head coach.
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