Football Team

King credits Rivera for 'staying the course' in Week 1 win

Football Team

If it was another coach, things probably go differently for the Washington Football Team on Sunday. 

Down 17-0 at home in your season opener, which has been marked as the beginning of a new era on several fronts, some coaches would've panicked.

They would have abandoned their advantage up front in order to make up for shaky coverage down field. They could have gone ultra-conservative on offense after Dwayne Haskins missed a few early throws. 

Luckily for Washington, they had Ron Rivera, who in his first game as the head coach in Washington, stuck to his plan and trusted his guys to make plays. They certainly did, and that's why NBC Sports' Peter King waxed poetic about Rivera's coaching job in the team's Week 1 win over the Eagles. 

"I think Washington coach Ron Rivera deserves a back-pat today for staying the course—and for aiding in the construction of a defensive front that absolutely abused Carson Wentz," King wrote. "Eight sacks by seven different players, and an additional 14 quarterback pressures or hits. After the Eagles scored a touchdown and field goal on their two first-quarter drives, this was Washington’s game, all the way."

On the backs of its incredible pass rush, Washington scored 27 unanswered points and made the defending NFC East champions look like a team destined for a top 10 pick, especially their offensive line.

Not only did they accumulate eight sacks, but they limited Philly to 57 rushing yards on 17 carries (3.35 YPC) who were without running back Miles Sanders. When you control the trenches like that and force three turnovers, it doesn't matter who you're playing, you'll be a hard team to beat. 

 

For Washington fans, that is hopefully the theme of Rivera's teams here. Hard-playing, resilient and prepared individuals who stay the course no matter the opponent or deficit in the first half. Those are incredibly easy teams to enjoy every Sunday.