Ron Rivera gives pep talk to Washington’s ‘young guys’ while mic’d up at OTAs

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Rivera gives pep talk to ‘young guys’ mic’d up at OTAs originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Ron Rivera may be a year-and-a-half into his D.C. tenure, but the veteran head coach is still building a new culture both in the locker room and on the field. While mic’d up at OTAs this week, Rivera preached the importance of good preparation to his younger players.

“Young guys, understand this,” Rivera said. “A lot of this stuff is new to you and we’re piling it on. OK, so it’s about retention. If you gotta spend a little more time afterwards looking at your stuff, make sure you do that. You come out here and make mistakes, you come out here and play slow because you’re not sure about what you’re supposed to do. Spend a little time in the book, it’s important. It gives you a better opportunity to come out and perform at your best so understand how important that is, OK?”

Washington is coming off a 7-9 season in which it won its first NFC East title in five years. This offseason has seen Rivera overhaul the front office, give the offense a new look by signing Ryan Fitzpatrick and Curtis Samuel, draft Kentucky linebacker Jamin Davis 19th overall to address its biggest hole on defense and pad the secondary with the addition of William Jackson III.

Rookies and second-year players figure to play an important role in 2021. In addition to Davis, Washington will also give second-round pick Samuel Cosmi a chance in the offensive line rotation while working in third-rounder Dyami Brown with the wide receiver group. Chase Young and Kamren Curl impressed as rookies last year and will be counted on as key starters for Washington’s vaunted defense.

But with the regular season still three months away, Rivera is preaching preparation to his young players while conducting up-tempo offseason workouts where he was constantly pushing the pace. Once training camp begins, he will have the chance to see which players heeded his advice.