Ron Rivera hasn’t even coached a game yet for the Washington Redskins, but he has already been asked about the franchise’s controversial name. His response might not have been what fans want to hear though.
Washington made a flashy move this offseason, hiring Rivera shortly after he was released by Carolina. Although he might not be considered an elite coach, the former linebacker has proven in the past that he can lead his team to the Super Bowl.
Obviously the priority for Rivera is revitalizing a team that hasn’t accomplished much since its championship run in 1991. However, part of the territory that comes with coaching the Redskins is facing questions about the franchise’s name.
During an interview on 670 The Score’s McNeil & Parkins Show, Rivera tried to steer clear of that question, calling it “a discussion for another time.”
Here’s what Rivera had to say, via 670 The Score:
“People have wanted me to get in politics while I’m coaching and I keep telling them, ‘It’s not for me to get up there and influence people.’ I have my beliefs, I know what I think, I support the movements, support the players. I believe in what they’re doing. There are certain elements to certain things. It’s all about the timing and the best time to discuss those things.”
The NFL is currently focused on figuring out peaceful protests for the upcoming season, such as kneeling for the national anthem.
Eventually, the Redskins will face plenty of pressure from the public to change their name. Right now just isn’t that time.
Whenever that time does come, the fan base in Washington will expect a strong response from Rivera.