Ageless linebacker Thomas Davis has reunited with Ron Rivera in Washington. And Davis knows from Rivera’s first year as a head coach in Carolina that he’ll be able to get the job done even without an offseason. That’s precisely what Rivera had to do in Carolina nine years ago.
“Coach Rivera did a tremendous job coming in, his first year as a head coach, coming in after a lockout into a team that just had the number one draft pick and coming in with a depleted roster, because what happened in Carolina that year,” Davis told reporters on Tuesday. “We let go of all the veterans, we didn’t sign anyone the previous year coming into free agency so he had a lot of work to do and he did a tremendous job of you know, just reorganizing the team and getting guys to buy in to what he wanted us all to do.
“It didn’t really happen that first year because of the lack of talent, I would say, that we had on the team, but as he was able to get in guys that he wanted you could see us become a really good football team. That’s not the situation that we’re facing right now in Washington because there are a ton of great players on the football team. Like I’ve said I went over the roster, I’ve seen the guys that are on the team, it’s all about getting those guys to buy in and understand their full potential. I know Coach Rivera is a great motivator, he can get guys to definitely buy in to what he’s doing.”
That’s perhaps the most optimism the Washington franchise has generated since RGIII’s rookie season, and there’s reason for hope even if there’s a limited opportunity to get ready for the games that count in 2020.