3 noteworthy takeaways from Commanders minicamp media day
By Jerry Trotta
1. Jack Del Rio Apologized to Team
The Commanders organization as a whole has faced harsh criticism for the comments defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio made on Twitter referencing the Jan. 6 insurrection as a “dust-up” and argued the Black Lives Matter demonstrations weren’t scrutinized enough in comparison to the attack on the Capitol.
Like the franchise, Del Rio was subject to harsh backlash and was subsequently fined $100,000 through head coach Ron Rivera. The longtime coordinator has since released an apology on Twitter and deactivated his account so as to prevent posing a further distraction to the team.
On Tuesday, Del Rio’s apology tour continued. Per Rivera, Del Rio addressed the team in a private meeting before the first practice of minicamp and noted he felt his assistant’s remarks were “well-received” and Del Rio encouraged players who had further questions to reach out and meet him face-to-face.
"“Jack spoke to the team this morning during the team meeting,” Rivera told the media. “He was very open, very forthright, very contrite and apologized and opened himself up to questions or opportunities for any players to come in and meet with him. He has already met with some of our players and talked to some of them about what was said. I’ve been told those meetings went very, very well. And so I’m pleased with that.”"
All might not be forgiven in the eyes of fans, but what matters is Del Rio’s apology seemed to resonate in the locker room. The 59-year-old is likely still on shaky ground with Rivera and Washington’s braintrust, but Rivera’s comments indicate the team is ready to make this distraction a thing of the past.