Washington Commanders head coach Ron Rivera has apologized for creating a stir with Monday comments regarding quarterback Carson Wentz.
Rivera said on the Don Geronimo Show on Tuesday morning that he addressed the team and talked to Wentz about his comments the previous day.
"I didn't have to. I was fortunate enough that our media relations director contacted him and let him know," Rivera said, via Nicki Jhabvala of The Washington Post. "And I actually talked to Carson this morning. In fact I talked to the whole team. I had a mea culpa moment and that I should know better. I created a little bit of a distraction and that's one thing that I try not to do and it's one thing that I'm very aware of. Again, it's one of those things that when you misstep, people can't wait to dive onto it and jump onto it and hold onto it without an opportunity to explain yourself. So, hey, that's on me. I should know better."
On Monday, Rivera was asked why other NFC East teams (all 4-1 or better) are ahead in the division at this point, and he responded: "Quarterback."
The coach added he had no regrets about the trade for Wentz despite the team's struggles that put them at 1-4.
"No, I got no regrets about that quarterback," he said Monday. "I think our quarterback has done some good things. There's been a couple games that he struggled, but you look at his numbers from yesterday and you would say, okay, look, his numbers he's had throughout the year, there times he was very solid. And then we had the unfortunate Philadelphia game, and he struggled a little bit in the Dallas game. But the way he performed yesterday, and it just shows you what he's capable of and we chose him because we believe in him. We chose him because we looked at what we felt were things that pointed towards him."
Wentz told reporters on Tuesday that he appreciated how Rivera handled the situation.
"Coach (Rivera) addressed it, handled it. Nothing for me that I'm overly concerned about," Wentz said. "Coach is very straightforward, up front guy. He addressed it in a team meeting, which I thought was really cool and what he meant by all of it. I feel very confident."
Tuesday, Rivera clarified that his comments about other NFC East teams were regarding the QB's familiarity with their systems while Wentz is in his first year with the Commanders.
"My whole point being is when you have a quarterback that's been around and been around your building for a specific period of time, the players know the guy," Rivera said, per The Post. "They develop this cohesiveness and this bond. We have a quarterback, he's been here for his first season, and as he continues to work and develop with our guys and assimilate to what we do, I think we will be progressively better. I thought he played very well this past week. He had some really good moments. He had a couple that I know he wished he had back, but the guy played, for the most part, a pretty doggone good football game."
Wentz wasn't the reason Washington lost to Tennessee on Sunday. The QB went 25-of-38 passing for 359 yards with two TDs and one INT, including a 75-yard TD to Dyami Brown that went 46.2 air yards (most air yards on a completion for Washington since Week 14, 2016, per Next Gen Stats).
Wentz has been sacked 20 times through five games (third-most in NFL) and thrown six interceptions (third-most), while throwing for 1,390 yards (fifth-most) and 10 TDs (tied for fifth-most).
Wentz was limited during Tuesday's walkthrough practice due to a right shoulder issue, but Rivera told reporters he doesn't expect it to be a problem for the QB during Thursday's game against the Bears.
Wentz also told reporters that his shoulder feels fine.