The 2021 season can be a bright one for the Washington Football Team. A new quarterback comes to town and head coach Ron Rivera looks to build on the successes of 2020 and an NFC East division title.

Maybe the biggest issues are about "culture'' and "complacency.''

READ MORE: NFL All-Time Top 100? Here's How Washington Ranks

Rivera talks a lot about the first one. And the second one? As the Washington Football Team's regular season approaches, he's bringing it up a lot as well.

"To me, you went through a tough situation," Rivera said, reflecting on some of the challenges of last year and then the eventual NFC East title. "You found an ability to reach down and find something to help you get through that. And that's stuff you build on. But if for whatever reason we come out and say, ‘Well, we arrived. Man, we got this.’ Then we're not going to get better.

"That's what I'm concerned about and that's what I want to feel good about when we get ready to play that first regular-season game."

The impact of Rivera resonates throughout an organization that has long been under a cloud during the tenure of owner Dan Snyder. Can Snyder and Rivera work together as they attempt to build a powerhouse in Washington D.C.? The partnership is working so far, largely because the owner is staying out of the way.


What to expect from new WFT quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick?

Fitzpatrick's arrival brings the team some short-term stability, but the team's long-term starting quarterback situation is still in question. That latter question is one for another day. But immediately?

READ MORE: NFL Execs Predict Washington Super Bowl Chances

Fitz is an upgrade to last year's often-stagnant offense. Wide receiver Curtis Samuel joining Terry McLaurin to form a scary pass-catching dual marks an upgrade. And as Fitzpatrick enters his 17th season in the league, he does so with a stable offensive line and a run game looking to elevate its numbers in Year 2 with Antonio Gibson, who can be a true three-down back if that's what Rivera wants.


There are 31 other teams that would definitely swap defensive lines with Washington. It's loaded with star power at the top and has tremendous depth. Chase Young and Montez Sweat should be improved from last season, which is a terrifying thought for opposing offensive lines.

“If there are two guys that I really want to see if they’re ready to take the next step, honestly, they’re both our defensive ends,” Rivera said. “Montez and Chase are two guys if they take the next big step in their development as football players [they] can really take their game to the next level and that can help us out as a football team.”

That "next level'' in 2021? It would mean the WFT boasts the NFL's best defense.

Predicted Record

Washington's Record: 9-8

Expected Depth Chart


QB: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Taylor Heinicke

RB: Antonio Gibson, J.D. McKissic, Jaret Patterson, Peyton Barber

WR: Terry McLaurin, Dyami Brown, Antonio Gandy-Golden

WR: Curtis Samuel, Adam Humphries, Cam Sims Dax Milne

Recommended Articles


Washington & Jon Gruden Email Scandal: U.S. House of Representatives to Investigate

Daniel Snyder, the Washington Football Team owner's lawyers say, has nothing to do with the email scandal. But the government is now ready to get involved.

Aaron Rodgers handoff © Mike De Sisti  The  2021 Jan 24

LISTEN: Can Washington Get First Win at Packers Since 1988?

Locked On Washington: Washington Football Team at Green Bay Packers Crossover Preview


Washington's Snyder Denies Leaking Gruden Emails

Former Washington cheerleader and cheerleading marketing director Melanie Coburn is expressing a belief that Snyder leaked the emails,

TE: Logan Thomas John Bates Ricky Seals-Jones, Sammis Reyes

LT: Charles Leno Jr., David Sharpe

LG: Ereck Flowers, Wes Schweitzer

C: Chase Roullier

RG: Brandon Scherff, Wes Martin

RT: Sam Cosmi, Cornelius Lucas


DE: Chase Young

Right DE: Montez Sweat, Casey Toohill, William Bradley-King, Jalen Jelks

DT: Jonathan Allen, Matthew Ioannidis, David Bada

DT: Daron Payne, Tim Settle

LB: Cole Holcomb, Jared Norris

LB: Jamin Davis, Khaleke Hudson, David Mayo

LB: Jon Bostic, Jordan Kunaszyk

CB: William Jackson, Benjamin St-Juste, Troy Apke

CB: Kendall Fuller, Jimmy Moreland

SS: Landon Collins, Deshazor Everett

FS: Kamren Curl, Bobby McCain, Jeremy Reaves

P: Tress Way

K: Dustin Hopkins

LS: Camaron Cheeseman

PR: DeAndre Carter, Isaiah Wright

KR: Danny Johnson

CONTINUE READING: Power Rankings: Where Does WFT Stand Ahead Of Week 1?