As expected, rookie RB Antonio Gibson has been ruled out of Sunday's game against the San Francisco 49ers due to the turf toe injury he suffered on Monday Night Football. Yesterday Rivera said Gibson's injury was concerning, but he has been working with trainers all week.
Rivera has been telling the team this week about humility following their big win over the last undefeated team in the NFL last week. He has also been emphasizing that they can't get complacent after beating the Steelers, they have to focus on beating another good team, the 49ers.
Washington will face their former left tackle Trent Williams for the first time on Sunday. Rivera said he understood Williams' reasoning for not wanting to stay with Washington, and they wish him well. Williams is one of the best in the league. Facing him will be a big test for Montez Sweat and Chase Young, and will let them "find out where they are".
Game statuses for #WASvsSF:— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
OUT: Antonio Gibson (toe)
QUESTIONABLE: Brandon Scherff (calf), Morgan Moses (groin), David Sharpe (knee) and Ryan Anderson (knee)
Terry McLaurin, who was also on the injury report, is good to go.
Washington RB Antonio Gibson OUT for Sunday's game vs 49ers— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) December 11, 2020
Rivera doesn't want the team to be complacent, and he thinks the players have responded well to that. They play a good 49ers team Sunday, and he wants them to stay focused after beating the Steelers.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
Ron Rivera on Trent Williams.... pic.twitter.com/IPWsy02aCb— michael phillips (@michaelpRTD) December 11, 2020
Ron Rivera on Trent Williams: “We want to wish him well.” He says he understood Williams’ reasoning for not wanting to stay with Washington.— Matthew Paras (@Matthew_Paras) December 11, 2020
Montez Sweat/Chase Young vs Williams:
Asked about Montez Sweat and Chase Young facing Trent Williams, Ron Rivera says "they'll find out where they are." Rivera says Trent is among the best in the NFL and a real measuring stick for the young defenders— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) December 11, 2020
Traveling west on a short week:
Asked about having to travel west on a short week, Ron Rivera says it's only an issue if you let it be an issue— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) December 11, 2020
Playing a complete game:
Rivera said there were moments where the team played well, but he has "mixed reviews" on the first half. The second half, however, was some pretty good football, he said.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
Washington will need to have more of what it did in the second half to put together a complete game.
Rivera says he has all the confidence in RB Peyton Barber, who should have an increased role with Antonio Gibson out.— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
Rivera said Cole Holcomb is a downhill guy and will shoot a gap, whether he's supposed to or not. When that happens, Holcomb knows that he needs to make the play, and his attitude has rubbed off on the rest of the LBs.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
Rivera likes the aggressiveness and downhill playing style of LB Cole Holcomb, even if he gets carried away at times. "He'll shoot the gap -- whether he's supposed to or not."— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
Says the other linebackers have fed off of Holcomb's energy.
One game at a time:
Rivera is still focused on the "one game at a time" mentality. Focus is important to Rivera, and if the team puts all its focus on the game in front of it, it has a good chance to win each week.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
Rivera said the 49ers are a championship-caliber organization. He knows their coaches are telling their players the same thing he and his are telling theirs. They will need to be prepared to play four quarters against a talented team.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
Practice squad QBs:
Rivera said that QBs Steven Montez and Taylor Heinicke will both remain on the practice squad, but @WashingtonNFL is aiming to keep Heinicke "as separate as possible" while learning as much as possible. The benefit is that he's played in Scott Turner's system.— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
Jack Del Rio
Defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio on why offenses might be targeting CB Ronald Darby early in games: "They've got to try and move the ball somehow."— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
Went on to say that Darby has played and that he's "certainly glad" Washington has him.
Kamren Curl/Deshazor Everett:
Jack Del Rio likes that the safety combo of Shaze and Kam "haven't blinked." Feels good that they are making the plays that are asked of them and handling communication. Added that Kam has "far exceeded" expectations for a seventh-rounder— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) December 11, 2020
Del Rio says "guys like to hit or they don't," and they like players who are physical and aggressive. He said Kam Curl and Deshazor Everett are both those types of players.— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
"They run the ball as well as anybody in the league."— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
-- Del Rio on the 49ers' rushing attack. After a bevy of injuries, they finally have all of their RBs healthy.
Chase Young/Montez Sweat:
"There's competition in that room, no question, and I think they feed off each other."— Kyle Stackpole (@kylefstackpole) December 11, 2020
-- Del Rio on pass-rushers Chase Young and Montez Sweat
Washington DC Jack Del Rio was asked how much freedom he gives his DEs to rush from standing up or from a three-point stance.— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) December 11, 2020
This was not the answer I was expecting. pic.twitter.com/mBFL6lzQEH
While today is Friday, Jack Del Rio told us he still held a Turnover Thursday where he emphasizes taking the ball away. He then said that Chase Young and Montez Sweat combined to force one at practice— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) December 11, 2020
Jack Del Rio said on this Turnover Thursday (Friday edition) there was a play in practice where the effort of Chase Young and Montez Sweat led to a turnover. He’s looking forward to seeing more of that.— Rhiannon Walker (@InstantRHIplay) December 11, 2020
Attention from defenses:
Terry McLaurin on why he, unlike some NFL receivers, touts team over me when it comes to stats following a quiet numbers game at Pittsburgh. pic.twitter.com/MwcldURoDC— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) December 11, 2020
Terry McLaurin is addressing the media. He brings a lot of attention from defenses, and that's something he has embraced. That creates more opportunities other players, and they capitalized on that against the Steelers.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
McLaurin knew Pittsburgh had a really good defense, but he didn't necessarily know how they were game planning for him. But with more attention on him, other players were able to take advantage of that.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
Terry McLaurin had no issue with his quiet statistical performance in Pittsburgh since he knows his presence allows others to go off. Still wished he made more of the few opps he got, but he's completely fine with what went down on Monday. (Ed note: Watch out for him Sunday)— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) December 11, 2020
McLaurin has been with Rivera for about a year now, and he said the No. 1 thing that stands out is ability to be honest with his players. The other thing is that he has a lot of confidence in what the team can be, and that spreads throughout the entire roster.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020
McLaurin didn't have a set goal in mind for this season, but he wants to put himself in the best situations to be successful. It would be cool to have 1,000 yards, but it would be even better to win the game and the division.— Zach Selby (@ZachDSelby) December 11, 2020