WASHINGTON — Before The Washington Football Team took on the Baltimore Ravens at FedEx Field Sunday, Washington Head Coach Ron Rivera was surprised with approximately 400 cardboard cutouts in the 'Coaches Corner' to support his battle with cancer.
The section in FedEx Field Stadium was labeled "Coach's Corner" with another area in the section that said #RIVERASTRONG.
"When you see things like this [from] people that support you and the notes I've gotten, the letters I've gotten, it's tremendous," Rivera said after seeing the cutouts.
Before the season, Rivera was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma and has been receiving treatment during the season. Rivera left practice early on Thursday after he was feeling side effects from the treatment he received on Wednesday. During Washington's previous home game, Rivera couldn't give the halftime speech to his team because he was getting a planned IV treatment.
Rivera broke the news of his diagnosis to the Washington Football team weeks before his first season with the team was expected to begin. Running back Adrian Peterson responded to the news with a simple phrase: "It sucks."
In a team statement, Rivera said he intends to coach this season.
"Coach Rivera has consulted with leading Doctors and Oncology Specialists and is establishing his treatment plan in conjunction with the team’s medical staff and his outside physicians," a statement from the Washington Football Team said. "For now, Coach has asked that the team keep things business as usual and remain focused, but a 'Plan B' is in place if it is determined that he should take some time off."
Rivera said he will undergo treatment five days a week for seven weeks. Which should be enough to cure the tumor experts said. But it will come with some difficult days for Rivera.
Rivera continues to show resilience and is pushing through as the head coach for Washington's beloved team.