Scary Reaves-Brown collision at OTAs leaves Ron Rivera furious over discipline

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Scary Reaves-Brown collision at OTAs leaves Rivera furious originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

A scary moment happened at Commanders OTAs on Wednesday.

The team took the field for 11-on-11 drills in what is as close to an actual game as they can simulate during the no-pad weeks of team activities. Carson Wentz dropped back to pass and targeted second-year wide receiver Dyami Brown over the middle.

Safety Jeremy Reaves went in to try to defend the pass and collided head-on-head with Brown. Though Reaves got up quickly, Brown remained on the ground for several minutes and needed attention from the team's training staff.

Brown was tended to by trainers before walking off the field on his own power, but was clearly dazed. He headed into the indoor facility and would not return to the field on the day.

Reaves checked on the receiver as he was walking off to make sure things were okay, and everything looked amicable between the two. Veteran cornerback Kendall Fuller, who was on the field at the time but not involved with the hit, was also one of the first people to check on Brown at the moment of the collision.

Ron Rivera shared an update on Brown’s status after practice.

“The last thing we want is somebody to be hurt, and we’re fortunate that Dyami only got a little sore shoulder and that’s about it, thank goodness,” Rivera said.

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Rivera was calm when talking to reporters but was absolutely livid as soon as the collision occurred. A collective silence fell over the players, coaches, and media in attendance, but as soon as that abated, Rivera made his emotions known.

“Who was the f*****g safety?!” Rivera screamed.

Reaves immediately raised his hand and said, “It was me, coach.” Rivera promptly called Reaves over for a private conversation in the middle of field, in which the head coach was clearly heated.

As soon as Rivera’s one-on-one with Reaves ended, Rivera furiously shouted, “Everybody come here!”

Players hustled over to their fuming head coach. He spoke candidly yet frantically about discipline, including one line which ended to the tune of “If you can’t do that, get off the field!”

Rivera ended his speech, and it was expected that players would resume their on-field work, but one player (undetermined whom) kept the 90+ man crew around to hammer the discipline point home.

The mood did lighten shortly thereafter, with Rivera sporting a smile about 15 minutes after the incident. OTAs ended with the usual coaches-and-players huddle in the middle of the field, but today, Rivera decided to have a private chat with the defensive back room at that spot after the rest of the team had walked off. The chat lasted only a couple minutes.

“I know better, so I was very frustrated with myself about that,” Reaves told reporters after OTAs ended on Wednesday. “When those situations happen, just be accountable. I took ownership for it, I stepped up, I knew I was wrong. Kinda just learn from it and move on.”

There have been a few scary-looking hits thus far at OTAs, but the Reaves-Brown collision was the most notable at the time it happened. Luckily, at least according to Rivera, Brown is okay and sustained no serious head injury. It is undetermined when he might return to on-field activities.

Should Brown’s status clear up and he be deemed good to go, Washington was fortunate. Still, Rivera stressed the importance of using the moment to teach discipline to his roster.

“But still, there’s a certain discipline that I try to get across to the guys that they understand…I gave them the example, I said, ‘What if somebody came and pokes you in the eye, and we’re driving to kick the game-winning field goal? You gonna slug somebody?’ We can’t do things like that. So that was just a little bit of a lesson, and a good opportunity to make sure the players understand.”