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Ron Rivera Presser: John Madden was a tremendous inspiration for me

Ron Rivera speaks to the media after today's practice

NFL: Washington Football Team at Las Vegas Raiders Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Injury updates:

Montez Sweat:

“It is rough, and our thoughts and prayers are with the families,” Rivera said. “We try to make sure that players understand that we’re here for them. We do have a team psychologist and she’s available, as well as myself (and the other coaches). ... We’re there for them.”

John Madden:

Reaction to John Madden passing away:

“Well, I was sad to hear that yesterday. It was truly unexpected from what I understand and surely unexpected by me. Favorite moments, gosh, there are a lot of them. Really just first getting a real true opportunity to visit with him and work with him and have him help me as I navigated through being a head coach at the beginning of my head coaching career. He’s always been very supportive, always been there and he was a tremendous inspiration for me.”

Memory that stands out from his relationship with John Madden:

“Well, the one thing I really appreciated more than anything else was the very first time I went to his office in California. We sat down, it was his office in Pleasanton, California. We sat down and the first thing he said to me when we started talking about being a head coach, he said, ‘Hey, don’t ever forget you are the head coach.’ He said, ‘everything will stop and start with you and everything will come across your desk.’ It was interesting because from that point on just the realization. I’d already been a head coach for two years, but just having him put it to me in those terms – very direct and very blunt and very straightforward – really just kind of I think helped galvanize my attitude and feelings about being the head coach.”

What about John Madden stood out to him:

“He had a way of tying everything in. When you sat down and talked with him and you discussed something with him, he would tie in a story of something that had gone through or he had done. He related those things to you and then made them so that you could understand them from practical experience, so you knew that he had already experienced this you know what I’m saying? His knowledge of it wasn’t him just guessing or telling you. His knowledge was actual practical experience. I mean he had gone through these things. To me, it’s always kind of cool when somebody else that’s been there is drawing you the map.”

COVID precautions:

Kyle Allen:

“Well, the biggest thing more so anything else is, again, if the situation presents itself and allows for it, Kyle will play. And if it doesn’t, we’ll stick with Taylor [Heinicke]. It’s not necessarily about having to evaluate these guys. It is really just about giving them a chance to play if the opportunity arises. We’ll see. As I said, Taylor is the starter and he’ll play. If the situation calls for it, we’ll give Kyle the opportunity to play as well.”

Taylor Heinicke:

“Taylor’s fine with it. Taylor and I have had the conversation a long time ago and several times. I think he understands me; I understand him. I think that’s what’s important is that he knows what I’m talking about.”

Dyami Brown:

Terry McLaurin:

“No, he isn’t. He’s doesn’t wear his emotions on his sleeve. That’s what’s impressive about him is he goes about his business. He works hard at his business. He may say something, but if he does it probably privately. I have not seen him wear any of his emotions on his sleeve, other than the excitement of when something big happens. When he does something big or the team does something big, then you really do see the emotions come out. To me, he is the ultimate pro. He’s one of those few guys that handled themselves the right way.”

Is how McLaurin handles himself unusual for a receiver?:

“I’ll say it is good for any position the way he handles it because a lot of guys do wear their emotions on their sleeves. A lot of guys do show their desire for certain things. With Terry, I believe he’s the guy that handles it the way that you’d like most guys too. And I get it. With those guys that do outwardly express themselves because they all wanna win. Everybody wants to win. This is an emotional game. It’s a game that you can really get caught up in the moment and yet you watch a guy like him who can really control it. That to me is impressive.”

Player fatigue:

“Well, you know, in some guys you kind of see a little bit of a gaze every now and then, and that’s when you go over and you start a conversation. Just something very simple, so very basic and just kind of see how they react and see if they pop right out of it. It’s like I said, it is hard, and it is tough. And I promise you, it’s not just us. There’s 31 other teams in the NFL, and then you think about all the other sports and, and all the other levels of sports, and then in everyday life. I mean we’re just a microcosm of society itself, we’re a snapshot of it. Because I promise you that there’s people in the real world that are tired, there’s fatigue that sets in and we all just can’t wait for it to hopefully some point end or for us to get control of it.”

Importance of seeing Curtis Samuel on the field for the last few games:

“It would be important especially if he’s ready to roll and we can get the ball to him and really start to see what he is capable of because that’ll really help. I think as far as going forward, you set kind of a tone as to what we can expect from him.”

Taylor Heinicke


Depleted roster:

Terry McLaurin

Focusing on his game:

Dyami Brown

Capitalizing on opportunities:

Rookie wall:

Working on route-running:

Tim Settle

COVID-19 quarantine:

Jonathan Allen/Daron Payne fight: