Cancer won't stop Rivera
Warpath|September 2020
Cancer won't stop Rivera
The diagnosis was a shot across the internet. Washington coach Ron Rivera has cancer.
Rick Snider

You’ve got to be kidding. Rivera will undergo treatment for Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) in a lymph node located in his neck. He first discovered it in July and was told in August of the skin disease. Rivera said he has a treatment plan with doctors and if needed the team has a Plan B for an interim coach. The succession wasn’t disclosed, but defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio was a head coach in Jacksonville and Oakland.

Longtime fans flashed back to late coach Vince Lombardi, who died after his first season in Washington because of cancer. However, cancer treatments have improved radically since 1970 and Rivera is expected to make a full recovery. Indeed, Georgetown University where Lombardi died now boasts the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center.

There were no signs of illness with Rivera as the team finally started full practices in mid-August. His well-known passion for up-tempo workouts was seen daily with Rivera telling players after a sloppy series they needed to spend the evening with their playbooks.

“It’s really about trying to set the tone so [coaches] can set the tempo,” Rivera said. “That’s more so than anything else. If we sit there and just meander about, the players are going to meander about. The players are going to feed off the energy that you have. That’s important.”


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September 2020