5. The Reality Is, Ron Rivera’s needed to change his approach earlier. Much earlier.
Ron Rivera admitted in his Monday press conference this week that he might need to adjust his coaching approach, given the ongoing struggles for his team this season. On Wednesday, he cut his controversial kicker, leading some to insinuate that move might have been what he was referring to on Monday.
If replacing a mediocre kicker with an unproven one was the type of adjustment Rivera was talking about, fans are going to be sorely disappointed. The soft and unaccountable approach to roster formation in Washington has been a problem in Washington for many years. Players being signed based on name recognition, kept based on their contract size, and kept accountable only if the coaching staff received expressed, written consent from the petty, insecure, and incompetent owner?
Those are extremely familiar moves for WFT fans. If Rivera is looking to make true impact-producing change, he’s going to need to buck tradition and bench or trade away multiple under-performing and overpaid players and dramatically adjust his approach to practice.
Based on their performances the last two weeks, Landon Collins should never be allowed to line up at anything other than linebacker again (Good news is, Rivera finally appears to have finally seen the light on that front), and William Jackson III and Kendall Fuller should be demoted to backup status until they learn how to tackle.
If Rivera was willing to make those types of moves with players of that profile and salary ($35.6M against the salary cap this season), then a message might get through to his entire roster. A shakeup in play-calling or game planning approach is also warranted, but until on-field accountability is ratcheted up, this “rebuild” is going nowhere, and this organization will continue to look more and more like it has for much of the last 25 years.