Oct 10, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Football Team outside linebacker David Mayo (51) and Washington Football Team guard Ereck Flowers (79) kneel in the end zone prior to the Washington Football Team's game against the New Orleans Saints at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Washington LB David Mayo signs one-year deal

Washington Football Team linebacker David Mayo signed a one-year contract extension on Friday.

Financial terms were not disclosed for Mayo, who was headed for free agency in March prior to the deal.

Mayo, 28, recorded 28 tackles and one fumble recovery in 16 games (four starts) this season, his first with Washington.

He has 201 tackles, two sacks and two fumble recoveries in 102 career games (23 starts) with the Carolina Panthers, New York Giants and Washington. He was selected by the Panthers in the fifth round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

–Field Level Media

Jan 2, 2020; Ashburn, VA, USA; Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder and his wife Tanya look on as head coach Ron Rivera speaks during his introductory press conference at Inova Sports Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Congress renews interest in WFT workplace investigation

The House Oversight Committee will hold a roundtable discussion on Feb. 3 to learn more about the NFL’s investigation into the Washington Football Team.

The roundtable, which isn’t a full congressional hearing, will involve some of the women who have accused the team of fostering a toxic workplace culture.

“It is becoming increasingly clear that not only did the team fail to protect employees, but the NFL went to great lengths to prevent the truth about this toxic work environment from coming to light,” said Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), who chairs the Committee on Oversight and Reform.

“The NFL’s decision to cover up these abuses raises serious questions about its commitment to setting workplace standards that keep employees safe. I commend these victims for their bravery in coming forward to share their stories.”

The Capitol Hill meeting will be held the day after the Washington franchise is scheduled to reveal its new name and logo.

Five former employees are expected to testify, but no team or NFL officials are on the schedule. The former employees have criticized how the NFL investigated and dealt with their complaints about the workplace environment.

At the end of its investigation last summer, the league didn’t issue a report or make public its findings. The NFL fined the team $10 million and required that owner Daniel Snyder hand over the day-to-day operations of the club to his wife, Tanya, for the time being.

Leaked emails that were discovered during the investigation led to the resignation of Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden after they became public in October. The emails were offensive in nature.

“In pursuing this investigation, Congress will send a clear message to all employers that the rights of women to work in an environment free from harassment and abuse will not be undermined in service to the rich and powerful,” said attorneys Lisa Banks and Debra Katz, who represent 40 former team employees, in a statement.

–Field Level Media

Jan 9, 2022; East Rutherford, N.J., USA; 
Washington Football Team running back Antonio Gibson (24) runs for a 1st down against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Antonio Gibson helps Washington hand Giants sixth straight loss

Antonio Gibson rushed for 146 yards and a touchdown as the Washington Football Team closed the season with a 22-7 win over the New York Giants on Sunday in East Rutherford, N.J.

In a defensive struggle, Washington’s Bobby McCain scored the game’s first touchdown late in the third quarter, returning an interception 30 yards as his team (7-10) snapped a four-game losing streak. McCain added another interception on the game’s final play.

It was the sixth straight loss for New York (4-13), each by double-digit margins. The Giants had hope when Jake Fromm threw a 22-yard touchdown pass to Darius Slayton, cutting Washington’s lead to 12-7 with 11:24 left.

But Washington responded on the ensuing possession. Gibson accounted for 57 of the drive’s 78 yards, the final 18 coming on his touchdown run with 6:28 left.

Gibson averaged nearly 7.0 yards on his 21 carries as he became Washington’s first 1,000-yard rusher since Adrian Peterson in 2018. Gibson’s 21 touchdowns in his first two seasons are a franchise record, as he topped Albert Morris’ mark of 20.

Washington controlled possession much of the afternoon as it outgained New York 325-177. WFT quarterback Taylor Heinicke completed 9 of 18 passes for 120 yards. Terry McLaurin caught four passes for 93 yards.

Washington limited Fromm to 15 completions on 31 attempts for 103 yards and held Saquon Barkley to 11 yards on 30 rushes. New York’s most effective weapon was Fromm’s legs as he scrambled five times for 53 yards.

In a static first half, Washington scored field goals on its first and final possessions to take a 6-0 lead. Heinicke scrambled away from pressure and threw a 30-yard pass to McLaurin to set up the first score, a 23-yard field goal by Joey Slye.

Late in the half, McLaurin made an over-the-shoulder catch near the sideline for 40 yards to set up a 43-yard field goal by Slye.

Late in the game, after Tim Settle recovered a fumble by Fromm, Slye made another field goal — from 23 yards — as he finished 12-for-12 on 3-pointers after he was picked up by Washington in November.

–Field Level Media

Sep 16, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Football Team quarterback Taylor Heinicke (4) passes the ball against the New York Giants at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Giants, Washington wrestle to end with a W

When the Washington Football Team and the New York Giants meet on Sunday to close their disappointing seasons, the stakes are decidedly miniscule.

But Giants coach Joe Judge upped the ante on Monday when he fired a potshot at the team that leads the Giants in the NFC East standings.

“This ain’t a team that’s having fistfights on the sidelines,” Judge said in describing his Giants (4-12). “This isn’t some clown show organization.”

Judge’s not-so-veiled reference to Washington (6-10) pointed to last month, when the Football Team became the subject of widespread derision in a humiliating 56-14 national TV loss at Dallas. That’s when Pro Bowler Jonathan Allen threw a punch at fellow defensive tackle Daron Payne.

The incident fueled discussion about the dysfunction that crippled Washington under the watch of owner Dan Snyder for more than two decades.

For context, in two seasons under Judge, the Giants are 10-22. But Washington coach Ron Rivera refused to fire back.

“No, I’m not gonna take the bait. The thing that’s important is what happens on the football field,” Rivera said. “We’ll worry about it on Sunday.”

Washington has lost four straight, including two each to division rivals Dallas and Philadelphia, while New York has dropped five straight, all by double-digit margins.

In their 29-3 loss Sunday at Chicago, the Giants’ play-calling was widely questioned. Trailing by two touchdowns less than seven minutes into the contest with the Bears, the Giants still threw only 11 passes.

The lone positive was the performance of Saquon Barkley, posting a 100-yard rushing game for the first time in more than two years, carrying 21 times for 102 yards.

Quarterback Mike Glennon completed 4 of 11 passes for 24 yards, throwing two interceptions and getting sacked four times for losses totaling 34 yards. The -10 passing yards was the lowest figure in the NFL since 1998.

Jake Fromm enters at quarterback against Washington. Glennon will undergo surgery on his left (non-throwing) wrist and Daniel Jones (neck) was shut down in December.

In two appearances this season Fromm, who will be backed up by practice squad quarterback Brian Lewerke, has completed 12 of 29 passes for 107 yards with no touchdowns and one interception.

Washington had a chance to keep its faint playoff hopes alive last Sunday but dropped a 20-16 decision to Philadelphia. Washington was outscored 13-0 in the second half.

Washington’s offense could get a boost in Week 18 with the return of tackle Sam Cosmi and running back Antonio Gibson from hip injuries. Both were limited participants in practice on Wednesday.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; A view of the helmets of Washington Football Team offensive tackle David Steinmetz (66) and center Beau Benzschawel (63) before the game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Washington Football Team at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

New name, logo reveal for Washington Football Team coming Feb. 2

The NFL team formerly known as the Redskins set an expiration date for the interim franchise name — the Washington Football Team — of Feb. 2.

Under the direction of a restructured front office and team president, the rebranding of the franchise owned by Daniel Snyder took more than 18 months.

The 2021 season is the second for the Washington Football Team moniker.

The franchise plans to reveal hints and uniform teasers leading up to the announcement in February. President Jason Wright gave the first spoiler Tuesday, saying the franchise will not be choosing Wolves or RedWolves as the team name due to copyright concerns.

“We can finally say that we are in the homestretch of our rebrand journey. We know this has been a long process — one with a lot of pieces and details — and we appreciate you sticking with us,” Wright said in a written statement. “First, and I’ll cut to the chase here, we can confirm that, after careful consideration, our team name will not be Wolves or RedWolves.

“Understanding the weight and importance of our team name, and excitement around other name options — both internally and within our fan base — we didn’t want to risk going down a route that could be dotted with legal hurdles.

“What comes next is exciting and fast-approaching — and here’s my second update: we can’t wait to reveal our team name to the world on Feb. 2, 2022! Mark your calendars, Washington Family. This is not a day you’ll want to miss!”

The franchise began using the Redskins nickname in 1933, when it was based in Boston and previously called the Braves. The name was dropped in July 2020 after multiple sponsors sent Snyder letters threatening to remove signage and end financial agreements, including the stadium naming rights deal with FedEx, unless the team retired the name.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Washington Football Team quarterback Taylor Heinicke (4) throws a pass in the first quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles continue playoff push in rematch with Washington

As Philadelphia has made a playoff push, winning five of its last six, the Eagles have benefited from good fortune as many of its recent opponents have been quarterback challenged.

During the span, Philadelphia has beaten quarterbacks Teddy Bridgewater (Broncos), Trevor Siemian (Saints), Garrett Gilbert (Washington), Mike Glennon (Giants) and rookie Zach Wilson (Jets).

On Sunday, when Philadelphia (8-7) plays at Washington (6-9), the Eagles will again face a skidding Washington team still struggling with a shaky quarterback situation. While Taylor Heinicke is set to start, Washington coach Ron Rivera has said that backup Kyle Allen also is likely to play.

In his last two starts, both against the Cowboys, Heinicke went a combined 18-of-47 for 243 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions, while yielding eight sacks.

Philadelphia currently holds the final playoff slot in the NFC and can capture a playoff berth with wins in its last two games, including on Jan. 9 at home against the Cowboys. It might not even take two victories to secure a spot ahead of Minnesota (7-8), New Orleans (7-8) and Atlanta (7-8), as the Eagles have wins in hand over the Saints and Falcons, giving them an edge in many tie-breaking scenarios.

“How do you get a little bit better each day?” Eagles coach Nick Sirianni said of his approach this season. “When you’re in this trajectory, I don’t think every team thinks that way. If you can get a little better and other people level out at the end of the year, you’re gonna pass other teams.”

Washington (6-9) has yet to be eliminated but is on life support as it needs to win out and have a series of calamities strike other wildcard contenders. After its third straight loss, a humiliating 56-14 defeat Sunday at Dallas, the team’s resilience will be tested.

“There’s a sliver of hope and we’ll see if that’s enough to get motivated to play,” Rivera said. “It’s gonna tell me a lot about who we are and who we have.”

Another factor for the recent success of the Eagles has been their rushing attack. In winning six of its last eight, Philadelphia has averaged 204 yards on the ground, after posting an average of 116.7 yards in its first seven games.

Sustaining the success might be difficult with top rusher Miles Sanders (754 yards, 5.5 yards per carry) out with a broken hand. Sanders had his season high 131 yards in Philadelphia’s 27-17 win over Washington on Dec. 21.

The status of backup Jordan Howard (stinger) is uncertain, leaving Boston Scott as the next best option. Scott (326 yards, 4.5 yards per carry) has produced in limited chances.

“Every time he’s called upon, he’s come through,” Sirianni said of Scott. “We’ve got four backs I think a lot of teams would like to have.”

In surrendering 519 yards in its recent defeat at Philadelphia, Washington was hampered by the loss of five starters and several key reserves to the COVID-19 list. The virus claimed both Heinicke and Allen, leaving Gilbert to run the offense. Washington has since regained Pro Bowl guard Brandon Scherff and safety Kam Curl. The team’s top tackler, Cole Holcomb, also returns from the virus list after missing the Cowboys game.

–Field Level Media

Dec 26, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Washington Football Team outside linebacker David Mayo (51) sets the play with defensive tackle Jonathan Allen (93) and defensive tackle Daron Payne (94) during the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Washington’s Jonathan Allen throws punch at teammate Daron Payne

Emotions boiled over on the Washington Football Team’s bench during Sunday night’s 56-14 loss to the Dallas Cowboys when star defensive tackle Jonathan Allen threw a punch at teammate Daron Payne.

The incident between the two former Alabama teammates happened in the second quarter with Washington trailing 28-7.

The two were conversing — not politely — when Payne, who was standing, poked his finger into the left side of Allen’s head. Allen swatted Payne’s hand away with his left hand and stood up and threw a hard right-handed punch that grazed the defensive tackle’s face.

Other Washington defensive players got between the two to break up the scuffle. Payne still was vehemently upset minutes later while Allen was sitting nearby.

After the contest, Payne had cooled off and said the incident was “wrong place, wrong time.”

“You got brothers? You guys fight, right?” Payne told reporters. “It’s all good.”

Washington coach Ron Rivera said after the contest that there would be no punishment.

“I’ve talked with them and as far as I’m concerned, that’s where it’s gonna stay,” Rivera said. “… What my players say to me is really nobody’s business.”

The 26-year-old Allen was named to the Pro Bowl this season for the first time in his five-year NFL career. He was the No. 17 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.

Payne, 24, was the No. 13 overall pick in the 2018 draft and is in his fourth season with Washington.

Washington (6-9) has dropped three straight games and has clinched a losing season for the fifth straight campaign.

–Field Level Media