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Washington Commander Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio deleted his Twitter account on Saturday, a day after he was fined for commenting on a tweet he made nearly a week ago.
Washington fined Del Rio $ 100,000 on Friday for controversial comments he made earlier this week, referring to the events of January 6, 2021 at the United States Capitol as a “dustbin.”
The team had no statement that Del Rio should delete his account. Del Rio did not immediately respond to a text message from ESPN.
On Friday, Commander-in-Chief Ron Rivera said in a statement that Del Rio’s comments do not reflect the organization’s views and are extremely hurtful to the District of Columbia area.
“As we saw last night in the hearings, what happened at the Capitol on January 6, 2021, was an act of terrorism,” Rivera said. “A group of citizens tried to overturn the results of a free and fair election, and as a result, lives were lost and the Capitol building was damaged.”
Del Rio is expected to speak to the team on Tuesday, although several sources close to the players have said they do not think it will be a problem with his players. Defensive man Chase Young said of Del Rio: “It’s his guy.”
Defensive tackle Jonathan Allen told NBC Sports Washington: “I don’t care about his opinion as long as he shows up every day and works hard. That’s what I want from my defensive coordinator.”
Del Rio’s tweets and subsequent explanation did not help a franchise that has been in the headlines for much of the last two years for non-football issues. The organization has spent the low season trying to rebuild its brand and officially change its name to Commanders, amid a congressional inquiry by team owner Dan Snyder. Congress invited Snyder to testify at a June 22 hearing.
The NFL continues to investigate an allegation of sexual abuse against Snyder; Attorneys General of Virginia and Washington, DC, are investigating allegations of financial inconvenience.
On Wednesday, Del Rio defended a response he gave on Twitter two days earlier. In a response to Norm Eisen of the Brookings Institution, Del Rio tweeted: “Would love to understand ‘the whole story’ of why the summer of riots, looting, burning and destruction of personal property is never discussed, but it is ???”
When he met with the media on Wednesday during a previously scheduled session, Del Rio said he felt there were two standards being applied. He said he was just expressing his opinion.
But in response to the last question at his press conference, Del Rio referred to the events of January 6 at the US Capitol as a “vacuuming,” creating yet another controversy. He met with Rivera later that day and again Friday morning when he was informed of the fine. The money will be donated to the United States Capitol Police Memorial Fund.
Del Rio apologized in a statement Wednesday.
“It was irresponsible and negligent to refer to that situation as a vacuum cleaner, and I’m sorry,” he said. “I stand by my comments condemning violence in communities across the country. I say so while also expressing my support as a US citizen for peaceful protests in our country.”
On Thursday, NAACP President Derrick Johnson called on Del Rio to “resign or be terminated” because of his comments.