But Rivera watched, his fingers nonetheless folded, as his assistants stood close by, barking out directions that ceaselessly appeared to pass unheeded. There used to be little Rivera may just say because the Washington Soccer Staff, just a week got rid of from its exciting comeback victory to open the season, grew to become in a disastrous offensive appearing to fail their first highway take a look at and lose at Arizona, 30-15.
Passes have been wildly off course for a lot of the sport, defensive coverages have been busted, the offensive line used to be ceaselessly a sieve, a punt go back used to be fumbled and most of the identical self-inflicted wounds that derailed Washington’s contemporary seasons resurfaced.
Simply when it gave the impression Rivera had this group on a brand new direction.
Washington’s inattention to the main points Rivera wired all over coaching camp have been handiest magnified by way of the benefit with which Kyler Murray, the reigning rookie of the 12 months, picked aside Washington’s protection. The twin-threat quarterback completed 26-of-38 in passing and totaled 353 scrimmage yards with 3 touchdowns, two of that have been speeding rankings.
Washington’s second-year quarterback Dwayne Haskins struggled to duplicate any an identical manufacturing for a lot of the primary part. The group had seven detrimental performs in that span, for a complete of 16 of their first six quarters of play to that time within the season, even though Haskins completed 19-of-33 for 223 yards and a landing move. And to his credit score, Haskins didn’t throw a unmarried interception in his fourth consecutive sport.
After Washington opened with a three-and-out — once more — Arizona spoke back with a 10-play, 48-yard force capped by way of a landing move from Murray to veteran receiver DeAndre Hopkins. Arizona coated up in a Three-by-1 formation, with Hopkins by myself at the left facet of the sector. He ran a submit direction into the center of the top zone, previous Fabian Moreau and in the back of Landon Collins, who lifted his fingers in frustration over the protection breakdown.
Collins redeemed himself with an interception on Arizona’s next ownership. However in contrast to Week 1, when Washington’s defensive takeaways ended in issues, the offense got here up empty. In placing distance at Arizona’s Nine-yard line, Haskins used to be strip-sacked by way of Cardinals defensive finish Jordan Phillips as he pulled again to throw, and Arizona recovered the fumble.
Washington’s protection attempted all over again to present its offense an opportunity, with a sack on Murray and a compelled three-and-out, however Steven Sims Jr. fumbled on a punt go back and the Cardinals have been unexpectedly again in place to attain.
Arizona would prolong its lead with a couple of box objectives in the second one quarter, whilst Washington oddly determined to accept a box purpose after marching the entire as far back as Arizona’s 6-yard line. Rivera opted to head for it — and effectively so — on a fourth-and-1 previous within the sport, however he looked as if it would play it secure when his group trailed by way of 20. Rivera used to be additionally wondered once more past due by way of the announcers at the sport’s broadcast when he declined to make use of any of his 3 last timeouts all over Arizona’s ultimate scoring force.
However Washington’s destiny will have been sealed lengthy earlier than.
On an afternoon when a large number of big name avid gamers and key starters around the league suffered important accidents, Washington’s beginning proper guard Brandon Scherff went down with a knee damage within the ultimate minute of the primary part. Scherff used to be helped to the locker room with a teacher and used to be dominated out for the remainder of the sport as Wes Schweitzer took his position.
Even supposing Washington made the overall rating first rate with a couple of fourth-quarter touchdowns — one 24-yard catch by way of extensive receiver Terry McLaurin and the opposite an 11-yard run by way of rookie operating again Antonio Gibson — the rankings have been too little too past due.
Previous within the week, Rivera mentioned he sought consistency from Haskins and extra contact on his passes. But Haskins’ long-term possible gave the impression handiest in flashes, as he discovered his rhythm with lead receiver McLaurin within the ultimate mins. McLaurin completed with seven catches and a game-high 125 receiving yards, together with a landing.