Football Team

The four factors that made Rivera's Week 14 speech so compelling

Football Team

Ron Rivera's had to address a lot of winning locker rooms lately, because the Washington Football Team's been doing a lot of winning lately.

On Sunday, Rivera gave yet another victory speech to his guys after they handled the 49ers in Arizona. And if there was a passer rating-like scale to grade such things on, Washington's leader would've racked up a perfect score.

In case you haven't seen the video of his remarks yet, here it is:

Now, let's explain why it checked every box of Excellent NFL Coach Speech Giving.

It had a central theme

This is a must. If you're going to try to get through to a bunch of adrenalined-up football players, you better have something to keep coming back to as the prominent message of your presentation, just like Rivera did.

"You are now relevant," he said. "You earned that. You earned that. Do not let anybody take that away from you. You have earned it."

The repetition of "earn" is so simple and so, so effective. It absolutely applies to what the Burgundy and Gold have done in the past month — they certainly haven't backed into the division lead — and it's an idea he's been stressing all year. Plus, he delivers that word with force, like he's trying to drop you for an eight-yard loss with it.

Did you see Rivera's eyes?

That isn't a rhetorical question. Did you?

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They're almost as big as Chase Young's potential and they show that what he's vocalizing means something to him. You know what they say: The passion is in the pupils.

 

His physical and verbal pacing were on point

You can't just stand in one place while rallying a roster and you can't either rush or be too deliberate when doing so. Rivera was a pro in both areas.

Note how the leader walks back and forth, ensuring both sides of the room are locked in to what he's preaching. Also, he paused right when he should've paused and he allowed his players time to react at some of the most critical junctures. Brilliant.

He spun it forward for the future

Lastly, Rivera punctuated his comments with something the organization could apply in the final three weeks of 2020.

"Be professional, understand what it takes to be a professional and do the professional thing," he said.

A speech without a lesson is like a bowl of cereal without milk: Trash. Fortunately, Rivera knew to finish off his pronouncements with one, which is vital if you want to have more chances to talk to a winning group in the coming games.