Washington Commanders offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy’s coaching style made headlines this week when head coach Ron Rivera told reporters some Commanders players were “a little concerned” about Bieniemy’s intensity level.
Bieniemy’s former players in Kansas City quickly came to his defense, with Miami Dolphins wide receiver Tyreek Hill saying his former coordinator made him better.
“Man there is no other coach that has your back like EB !! Take that coaching and get better we all been through … it’s tough but I promise you it will make you better,” Hill posted to X.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes echoed Hill’s thoughts Friday, telling reporters that his time working with Bieniemy made him a better player.
“I saw EB say it perfect. EB is going to be harsh on you, he’s going to really try to get the best out of you every single day,” Mahomes said. “He’s going to hold you accountable even when you don’t want to hold yourself accountable. And it made me a better player.
“I think what he said that was the biggest thing is he’s your No. 1 supporter though. He will go to war with you just like any other guy on your team. And you gotta know that. And you gotta know when he’s talking to you on the football field, he’s trying to get the best out of you. He’s not trying to put you down. He’s trying to push you to be even better than you think you can be.”
Rivera said he spoke to Bienemy following his comments, telling him he “put his foot in his mouth.”
“At the end of the day, we know that we’re trying to build here, and we’re all aligned,” Rivera said. “As I’ve said many times since I hired Eric, I love the overall message that he gave to the team his first day. And that was basically, ‘We gotta learn to be comfortable when we’re uncomfortable.’ And I think what’s happened is, for guys that are on that side of the ball, things are uncomfortable. There’s been a lot of change.”
Bieniemy was hired by Washington in February after helping lead the offense in Kansas City to two Super Bowls in five years.
“They’ve got to understand we’re in a grown man’s business,” Bieniemy said Tuesday, according to ESPN. “My job is to make sure I do the best job of overcommunicating clearly. When I’m getting on them, it’s not personal. What’s personal is I want us to win. I expect that particular player to be great at all times. I expect that effort to be a standard that’s accepted by all of us. If they don’t reach it, my job is to address it.”
The Commanders will open the preseason against the Cleveland Browns Friday night while Kansas City heads to New Orleans for a matchup with the Saints Sunday.