Football Team

Rivera says Fuller's championship experience is 'invaluable'

Football Team

After missing out on Amari Cooper in free agency, the Washington Football Team did not make any lucrative signings, with the exception of inking defensive back Kendall Fuller to a four-year, $40 million deal.

Fuller returned to Washington this season after spending the past two in Kansas City, playing several different roles in the Chiefs secondary. During his two years with Kansas City, Fuller gained tremendous postseason experience and even made the game-sealing interception in Super Bowl LIV in February.

The cornerback left Kansas City to return home this offseason and join head coach Ron Rivera, who's been tasked with building a winning culture in Washington -- an organization that hasn't had many victories since Fuller has been alive.

In a 1-on-1 interview with NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay, Rivera said that Fuller's championship experience with the Chiefs is "invaluable" as the head coach tries to build a culture similar to the one in Kansas City in the nation's capital.

"Guys like that are invaluable because they can spread the word," Rivera said. "They can explain to guys this is how it works and this is how things need to be done. I think that's important. That's the thing you have to have, that kind of a guy that can explain to people, 'When I was in Kansas City, this is how it happens. This is how you have to do things a certain way.'"

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With the Chiefs, Fuller played under head coach Andy Reid, who Rivera worked under for five years as a coach for the Eagles. Reid is one -- and has been for quite some time -- of the best coaches in the NFL. Rivera said there's still plenty of things he learned from him in Philadelphia that the Washington boss still uses today.

"I'm part of that Andy Reid tree. I worked for Andy for five seasons and learned from him," Rivera said. "A lot of things I do here as a head coach are things he still does. There's a little bit I use that I believe is helpful."

Fuller missed Washington's first two games due to injury but has been without a doubt the team's best defender since returning to action.

In just four games with Washington, Fuller has hauled in four interceptions, tied with Miami's Xavien Howard for the NFL lead. He's averaging 0.54 yards per coverage snap, with is the fifth-best mark across the league.

Washington is getting its money's worth with Fuller, and then some. And Rivera is thrilled to have the cornerback on his side.