Washingtons Redskins — sorry, Washington football team — head coach Ron Rivera has one tall task ahead of him this upcoming season.
Entering his first season as the head coach in Washington, Rivera has a number of challenges ahead of him. Not only does he have to worry about rebuilding a lowly football franchise that hasn’t won a playoff game since the 2005 season, he has to worry about rebuilding a football brand all because of the history of the team — that of the Redskins team name.
Rivera, who previously served as the head coach of the Carolina Panthers over the prior nine seasons, commented on what it will take to win Washington football fans back moving forward.
Via Darin Gantt of NBC Sports:
“I think the thing people have to understand is this is going to be a transition, it’s not going to happen immediately,” Rivera said. “We’re going to try to win the fans over by playing good football more than anything else. When you play well and win football games people get behind you and they support you. And we’ve got to show our fan base we’re the same football team, just a different name right now, a placeholder.”
Outside of winning back fans by simply playing “good football” and by winning games, Rivera stresses the need for a good culture. These comments come shortly after it was cited by a Washington Post report in which 15 former female employees cited sexual harassment claims in the Washington football team workplace.
“We’ve got to do things the right way, we’ve got to change the culture of who we are. Not just rebrand the name, but rebrand the style of football we’re going to play and rebrand the way we do things, and that’s probably one of the most important things we have to do right now.”