Ron Rivera and the Washington Commanders have now dropped three consecutive games following a season-opening victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Washington’s latest loss came against the Dak Prescott-less Dallas Cowboys on Sunday by the score of 25-10. Washington’s offense tripped all over itself with Carson Wentz throwing two interceptions while averaging a mere 4.0 yards per attempt.
Facing career backup Cooper Rush, the Commanders’ defense yielded a game-changing 75-yard touchdown drive to open the fourth quarter, pretty much putting this game on ice.
Washington now finds itself at 1-3 and three games behind the first-place Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC East. It is also two games behind the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants, firmly in the cellar with a Week 5 outing against the Tennessee Titans on the horizon. This has Rivera’s hot seat reaching boiling levels.
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Washington Commanders not prepared to play under Ron Rivera
Washington found itself down 12-7 against Dallas at the half on Sunday. The team trailed partially due to a Trevon Diggs interception of Wentz late in the second quarter. The Commanders have now trailed at halftime in 23 of their 37 games under Rivera. That’s a prime example of the team not being ready to play out of the gate under the head coach.
It was back in Week 2 that Washington found itself down 22-0 at halftime to the lowly Detroit Lions. While the Commanders would bounce back to make it a game, the 36-27 loss was troubling for the aforemetioned reasons. Then, last week, Washington was down 24-0 at halftime against a vastly superior Eagles team before losing 24-8 in a game that was much less competitive than the final score indicated. It ended in Eagles QB Jalen Hurts getting MVP chants inside Washington’s own stadium. How embarassing.
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Carson Wentz’s struggles under Ron Rivera
“I’m not worried about Carson. Carson’s going to bounce back. He’s a very resilient young man. And I loved his press conference, accepting responsibility. And he put it on himself and he tried to make sure everybody understood that this is a team game, we’re all culpable. And I don’t disagree with him. We are all culpable, myself included.”Washington Commanders head coach Ron Rivera on Carson Wentz after Week 2 loss
About that? Wentz was vastly outplayed by a career backup in Cooper Rush on Sunday. In addition to throwing those two interceptions, he averaged just 4.0 yards per attempts.
Wentz was also hit a whopping 11 times after being dropped nine times and hit a total of 17 times in last week’s blowout loss to the Eagles. Talk about failing to put your quarterback in a great situation. All said, Wentz has been hit 39 times during Washington’s three-game losing streak. To say that’s not sustainable would be an understatement.
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Accountability for Ron Rivera
Widely respected dating back to his days as the Carolina Panthers’ head coach, Rivera is now 15-22 in D.C. In fact, Rivera-led squads are 27-38 dating back to the 2018 season. He knows that the status quo just isn’t sustainable.
“It’s time to take another step. You see enough to tell you to play better, we should play better,” Ron Rivera following Sunday’s loss.
The question is now rather obvious. What can Rivera do to salvage his tenure in Washington? This team is ways behind both Dallas and Philadelphia in the NFC East. Despite boasting more talent than the Giants, it is also two games behind New York through four weeks.
This coming week will see Washington take on a Titans team that has won two consecutive games. It then goes up against a mediocre Chicago Bears squad before an Oct. 23 matchup against the Green Bay Packers. Realistically, Washington will likly have to go 2-1 during that span to salvage its season. A loss in all three would likely see Rivera’s hot seat get even hotter before an Oct. 30 matchup against Wentz’s former Indianapolis Colts squad. That’s the reality of the situation in Maryland.