Former Commanders HC Ron Rivera is flirting with the enemy

The experienced figure is reportedly in line for an immediate return to work.

Ron Rivera and Nick Sirianni
Ron Rivera and Nick Sirianni / Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Former Washington Commanders head coach Ron Rivera is going behind enemy lines in pursuit of continuing his NFL coaching career next season.

Ron Rivera being relieved of his duties as Washington Commanders head coach was a foregone conclusion from a long way out. Things didn't go well over his four-year stint with the franchise. But it seems as if the respected figure is intent on finding an immediate return to work in some capacity.

Even if that means flirting with the enemy.

According to Jeremy Fowler of ESPN, the Philadelphia Eagles will speak with Rivera about potentially joining the ranks as their new defensive coordinator. This is an organization he knows well. It would also give him the chance to go up against the Commanders twice a season as NFC East adversaries.

Ron Rivera could join Commanders' division rival

Rivera recently revealed to John Keim of ESPN that he's got a few offers on the table. He's taken some time to take stock. Even though things went south in Washington, the former linebacker believes it's provided some useful learning tools he can put to good use moving forward.

"I have several opportunities right now. I just want to make sure it's the right one. Sometimes you do have to take a step back. You take a step back you learn and grow from it. It's like I told other players, if you look at this year as a lost year, you're [hurting] yourself. You should look at it as a year to learn and understand why things happen. This was probably the greatest learning experience I've had in a while this year. I mean, a lot of things came to light at certain times this past season that I think going forward will really help me."

Ron Rivera via ESPN

The Eagles went into complete freefall after a 10-1 start. Sean Desai was taken off the defensive play-calling in favor of Matt Patricia. This decision blew up in their face and neither will be part of Nick Sirianni's plans in 2024.

Ron Rivera / Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Considering Sirianni and general manager Howie Roseman are holding a press conference on Wednesday, it's obvious that the head coach is getting a reprieve despite their eye-popping collapse. With pressure mounting, turning to someone with Rivera's experience represents a sensible course of action.

It would be strange to see Rivera on the opposite sideline the season after he was fired as part of Josh Harris' plans for a more prosperous future. He'll know plenty about how to counteract Washington's weapons on offense, although things are going to look completely different from a playing personnel standpoint once new general manager Adam Peters has concluded wheeling and dealing this offseason.

Rivera inherited a complete mess in Washington. He handled himself impeccably and conducted himself with poise. He overcame significant personal adversity, beating cancer and never taking a backward step from his coaching responsibilities. That said, his flawed roster-building and freefalling results meant there was only one option once the campaign concluded.

Coaches with Rivera's credentials and leadership never stay unemployed for long. This is a big project to take on considering how many Eagles players underperformed and how many are out of contract. But looking at how his predicament unfolded in Washington, perhaps a fresh start - even if it is with a divisional rival - is exactly what he's looking for.

Still, every Commanders fan will wish him nothing but misery if he gets the Eagles' defensive coordinator job. Nothing personal. Just business.