The Washington Commanders are moving on from head coach Ron Rivera a day after the team finished a 4-13 season. Rivera compiled a 26-40-1 record in four seasons with the organization, and was fired after months of speculation that Washington would find a new coach at the conclusion of this season.

“Today, we made the decision to part ways with Ron Rivera…Ron helped navigate this organization through some challenging times. He is a good man and thoughtful leader who has positively contributed to this organization and the NFL,” Harris said in a statement.

Owner Josh Harris will employ the experience of former Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers and former Minnesota Vikings general manager and current co-host of ‘With the First Pick,’ a CBS Sports podcast, Rick Spielman to aid in the search a new head of football operations and head coach. Former Lakers guard Magic Johnson, 76ers co-managing partner David Blitzer and Commanders limited partner Mitchell Rales will also be involved.

“To deliver upon our ultimate goal of becoming an elite franchise and consistently competing for the Super Bowl, there is a lot to do and first we must establish a strong organizational infrastructure led by the industry’s best and most talented individuals. As such, we will conduct a thorough search process to ensure we find the right candidates to guide this franchise forward. I consider these decisions to be among the most critical I make for the franchise – attracting exceptional talent, empowering them to lead and holding them accountable. I look forward to being thoroughly involved throughout this process,” Harris said.

This marks the second time that Rivera has been fired in the second year of a franchise’s new ownership. Carolina owner David Tepper cut ties with the coach in 2019 after buying the team a year earlier.

Rivera spent six seasons as a defensive coordinator with the Bears and Chargers before getting his first opportunity to become a head coach in 2011; becoming the third Latino head coach in NFL history.

Carolina went to Super Bowl with No. 1 overall selection Cam Newton leading his team. Denver and legendary quarterback Peyton Manning vanquished their opponent, 24-10. It was the first meeting between head coaches that had previously played in a Super Bowl. Rivera led the Panthers to a 76-63-1 record over the course of nine seasons.

Adversity defined his first season as head coach in the nation’s capital. The nation was experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic while he was undergoing treatment to fight cancer. He missed just three practices and led Washington to the NFC East title that year. The 62-year-old is now cancer-free.

As a player, Rivera was a second-round draft pick by the Bears in 1984 and was a member of the 1985 team that won Super Bowl XX.

Washington currently holds the No. 2 overall selection in the 2024 NFL Draft, which gives the team a prime opportunity to replace starting quarterback Sam Howell or trade the pick for a massive draft pick haul. The Commanders are also projected to have the most salary cap space available this offseason with nearly $85.3 million. Owner Josh Harris has ample resources to attract a top tier candidate.

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Kay Adams