Football Team

Feds searched Washington Football Team facility, trainer on leave

Football Team

Federal investigators executed a search warrant at the Washington Football Team’s training facility and the home of Head Athletic Trainer Ryan Vermillion on Friday, law enforcement sources told News4. Vermillion is on leave because of an investigation, the team said. 

“Ryan Vermillion has been placed on administrative leave due to an ongoing criminal investigation that is unrelated to the team,” the team said in a brief statement Monday.

Head Coach Ron Rivera said in an exclusive interview with NBC Sports Washington that he put his trust in Vermillion.

“The only thing I can say about Ryan is, I know who Ryan is. Last year I trusted Ryan with my health, and I would do it again,” Rivera said. 

Rivera was diagnosed with squamous cell cancer in his lymph nodes in August of 2020 and finished his final round of chemotherapy treatments last Oct. 26. 

When asked if he had received any questions about Vermillion from players, he said, “We’ll stick to the statement that’s been made, and we’ll focus in on playing football and try to stick to that.” 

Vermillion didn’t immediately comment. No one answered a knock on the door of his Loudoun County home on Monday. A man who appeared to be Vermillion could be seen driving away. His attorney responded with "no comment" when reached by NBC Sports Washington.

No charges were immediately filed and no arrests were made.

The searches occurred Friday afternoon at the INOVA Sports Performance Center in Ashburn and at Vermillion's home, sources said. 

 

Witnesses said they saw at least a dozen U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents going in and out of the townhouse.

It was unclear what they were looking for or what they may have seized. Search warrant documents were not immediately available.

Sources told NBC Sports Washington that team officials themselves were still working to get more information from federal investigators. 

Vermillion, known by many as "RV," is a close associate of Rivera. He's in his second season as Washington’s head athletic trainer after 18 seasons in the role for the Carolina Panthers, his team bio says. He worked for the Panthers under Rivera for nine seasons.

News4 and NBC Sports Washington are working to learn more.

Stay with NBC Washington for more details on this developing story.