The team also turned to its younger players down the stretch as Callahan made rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins the starter and inserted rookies into starting positions on both sides of the ball.
The Redskins hired Ron Rivera to coach the team and be the face of the organization. Only running backs coach Randy Jordan and special teams coordinator Nate Kaczor were retained from the previous coaching staff.
Callahan coached the 2002 Oakland Raiders to the Super Bowl before leading the program at the University of Nebraska from 2004 to 2007. He returned to the NFL in 2008 as an assistant head coach and offensive line coach with the New York Jets before being named the Dallas Cowboys’ offensive coordinator in 2012.
“[I] tried to bring back a work ethic into the program that I thought was lacking,” Callahan said before the Redskins’ final game of the season. “I thought our players could have been better fundamentally, still not there yet. I saw our players get better and compete for four quarters. I saw our players have stamina through four quarters of play.
“I thought long and hard about improving the team and what aspects I would really focus on, and a lot of that was the second-half finish and I thought we did that. I thought we competed better in the second half of our play. We didn’t finish the way we wanted to. We didn’t win the games we needed to win.”
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