Ron Rivera would 'hate' to have a QB without help around him

Terry McLaurin and Antonio Gibson

What do you call an upper-echelon quarterback without sufficient help around him?

One of Ron Rivera's biggest fears.

OK, fine, that wasn't much of a punchline. Sorry for that.

However, in listening to Rivera address the media during a Wednesday press conference, one that was held to introduce new GM Martin Mayhew and new high-ranking executive, Marty Hurney, to the media, Washington's head coach was adamant that he has no interest in landing a primetime passer if that guy is then completely left alone in the huddle.

"That’s the struggle," Rivera said at one point. "That’s what you really, truly worry about... If you do have your franchise quarterback, can you protect him? Do you have enough playmakers around him? I’d hate to go get a franchise quarterback or have a franchise quarterback and not have enough tools in place to make him efficient."

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When hearing Rivera explain his feelings about the topic, it was quite easy to connect his thoughts with the Burgundy and Gold's potential pursuit of Deshaun Watson or any other aggressive move to address the depth chart under center.

To acquire Watson, for example, in a trade, a franchise is going to need to be willing to part with many resources; in all likelihood, that means both draft picks and players. Can Watson — or someone like Derek Carr, but on a smaller scale — overcome the talent that was shipped off in order to secure his services?


On Wednesday, Rivera didn't necessarily come across as someone who's desperate to find out for himself.

"I don’t want to see us get into a situation where we can’t put playmakers around our guy, we can’t protect our guy," Rivera said. "That’s something that we’ve got to make sure we can do.”

That's how Hurney views things, too.

"This is a team game," he said. "As important as that quarterback position is, you have to have people around him... You can’t isolate one position."

A counter-argument to their way of thinking is that, if you do come across a legitimate star signal-caller, that QB should be able to elevate less-than-stellar personnel around him. If Watson is actually as skilled as many believe he is, he ought to succeed even if his offensive line isn't as stout as others around the NFL or if his receiving corps isn't loaded with high-priced targets.

As experienced as he is, Rivera is no doubt aware of that. But judging by his public comments on Wednesday, he doesn't seem to be in as much of a rush as those on the outside are when it comes to committing everything toward solving Washington's hole at quarterback.

"Is it imperative to find the right guy now?" Rivera asked. "No, not necessarily. We would love to, but as we go through this process, we’re going to exhaust all avenues. We’re going to take nice, long looks at every option we have out there that’s available to us. We’ll go with the one we think is best for us going forward."