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Thank You - An Open Letter

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Old 10-08-2008, 10:33 PM   #31
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

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Originally Posted by Schneed10 View Post
Amidst all the excitement, the Redskins buzz on the airways, the cheers by the fans, the positive press from national media, amidst high hopes and the praise for new coach Jim Zorn; amidst all of that I just wanted to stop and smell the roses while we sit here at 4-1, and say thank you to the man most responsible for the Redskins' success this season...

Joe Gibbs.

This is in no way to take away from the job Jim Zorn has done/is doing, and in no way to take away from the sound decisions Vinny Cerrato has made since taking the reins as the football boss. It is because of Jim Zorn that our offensive schemes are creative, balanced and unpredictable. It is largely because of Jim Zorn's tutelage that Jason Campbell has taken his game to the next level, winning four out of five tough games without committing a single turnover. It is because of Vinny Cerrato that rookie Chris Horton now mans the safety spot, generating four takeaways for the Redskins through five games. Jim Zorn and Vinny Cerrato have been a success thus far, and we're all excited for what's to come with them at the helm.

But as I watch Clinton Portis put up nearly 150 yards on the Eagles in Philly, I can't help but think of the day Joe Gibbs traded for him. As I watch Shawn Springs shut down Terrell Owens in Dallas, I can't help but think of the day Joe Gibbs flew on Redskins One to sign him as a free agent. As I watch Chris Cooley (who Gibbs traded up to acquire in the 2004 draft) catch a TD pass against the Eagles from Antwaan Randle-El (who Gibbs acquired as a free agent in 2006) I can't help but think of Joe. And especially as I watch Jason Campbell develop into a star QB, making key plays on third down to move the chains and ice games, I think back to the day Gibbs traded three picks to jump up and take him 25th overall.

Marcus Washington. Cornelius Griffin. Rocky McIntosh. LaRon Landry. London Fletcher. Carlos Rogers. Fred Smoot. Casey Rabach. Santana Moss. In addition to the players mentioned above, these guys all have three things in common:

- They're 4-1.
- We love them.
- Joe Gibbs acquired them.

Joe Gibbs built the foundation of this team, but more than that, he restored the pride and character in this team.

How can this team still keep fighting hard every week despite the constant turnover amongst the coaching staff over the years? The change in offensive systems? The departure of star defensive coordinators? How can this team keep fighting hard when they're down 14 on the road to the Eagles? Lesser men would have quit when down 14 on the road against the Eagles. But these are not lesser men, they are Joe Gibbs' men. They were guided first hand by the steadiness of their great coach who picked them up after tragically losing a star teammate and guided them to a December push for a playoff berth. They saw what it meant to come together, to appreciate one another, to demand hard work and commitment from one another.

Far be it for a Redskin fan to draw comparisons to the hated Cowboys, but when Bill Parcells left the Cowboys he left them with a foundation that allowed Wade Phillips to guide them to a 13-3 record. Likewise, Joe Gibbs has left Jim Zorn with a young franchise QB in the making, an experienced and cohesive offensive line, a star running back, a star tight end, and a playmaking wide receiver. He left a defense in capable hands by building a deep coaching staff and who retained players and schemes that have been successful in the past. The only difference between these Redskins and those Cowboys? A better man built these Redskins, and a better coach is taking the reins of these Redskins. And hopefully, results will be better than a divisional round loss at home.

Whatever is in store for the Redskins this season, whether a playoff berth, a division championship, a conference championship, or a Super Bowl victory, Joe Gibbs deserves much praise. Without his work we wouldn't be 4-1 today. He's left his fingerprints all over Zorn's team. Make no mistake, this is Zorn's team now, and the excitement surrounding him is justified. But without you, Joe, we are nothing.

Thank you for all you've done. Your tenure was a resounding success - you've given this team the chance to do something special. Even if you're no longer part of the Redskins, you've left your mark. So enjoy your retirement, and root alongside us for your Redskins to do something special this year.

Hail.
This is the best post I have ever read on this website. Great job!
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Old 10-08-2008, 10:37 PM   #32
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Great, great post Schneed. I agree with everything you said, but I believe there is one missing aspect that Joe should be loudly thanked for:

Backing Danny off. When Joe took the reigns, Snyder almost immediately went from front and center on football decisions to just the guy they showed in the owners box on Sundays. We went from a real life "fantasy football" team full of ridiculous blunders as far as player acquisition, to a sound, disciplined organization (I know, I know, Llyod and Arch as the exceptions).

Snyder grew up a huge Skins fan and idolized Coach Joe. Joe did a wonderful job of helping Danny grow into the proper role of a good owner, and Danny finally started allowing football people make the football decisions. I'll never forget the way Danny handled the Sean Taylor situation. I gained a TON of respect for him after that tough time. At that moment, it became crystal clear to me just how much positive influence four years of being around Gibbs has had on the man.

For that Joe, I say another resounding THANK YOU!
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Old 10-08-2008, 10:43 PM   #33
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

A+ Schneed!!! Fantastic post. This should be published. It's that good!!!
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Old 10-08-2008, 11:27 PM   #34
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Wow, much love. Thanks.

It's an interesting debate, would we be 4-1 with Gibbs at the helm. So tough to say. Campbell clearly has taken a leap this year, seems like Gibbs could have come up with something to make good use of that. Then again, maybe Campbell has taken said leap because of Zorn's teaching.

It's an impossible thing to sort out, but all I know is Gibbs did a hell of a job building this franchise, and Zorn is doing a hell of a job guiding it.

In the end, it just feels great to be a Redskin fan these days. Even greater than normal.
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Old 10-08-2008, 11:37 PM   #35
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

You better believe it buddy!
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Old 10-09-2008, 03:15 AM   #36
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Joe Gibbs evaluated and acquired players by these attributes (in order of importance.)
1. character
2. smarts
3. athletic ability

Jerry Jones acquires players in this order.
1. athletic ability
2. smarts
3. character
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Old 10-09-2008, 01:18 PM   #37
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

great post...i was just having this same discussion with someone the other day...I was making the point of how Joe Gibb's brought back respectability and Redskin pride. Hail Joe Gibbs for putting these players together and Hail to Jim Zorn for the way he has run with this thing. I know its early but who would have thought we would have been 4-1 after the first 5 games? Not me...I saw 3-2 or 2-3 at best....
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Old 10-10-2008, 12:53 AM   #38
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

I thought this went well this thread

Washington Times - Building with Gibbs' guys
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Old 10-10-2008, 12:52 PM   #39
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Great post Schneedster. I'm a huge Gibbs fan and agree with everything you wrote.

That being said, I will go on record as saying that we would not be 4-1 if Gibbs were still here. Zorn is pretty much the anti-Gibbs with the way he calls plays, his go-for-the-throat mentality at the end of games, and his funny sideline antics. And I think this is just what the team needed.

The Gibbs II years had so many egos (Gibbs, GW, Saunders...) and there was always a level of stress and pressure on everyone to perform. Zorn and his "no-name" staff bring a fresh attitude and it seems like everyone is having more fun out there.

It's like Zorn doesn't know the "rules":

- No other Skins coach in the last 30 years (or ever) has won his first game in Dallas? Sorry wasn't aware...

- The Philly game was supposed to be a letdown after the big Dallas win, especially after trailing 14-0 and sitting on the brink of a blowout? Didn't know that...

- With 2:30 left in the game and 4th-and-1 from the opponents 40 we're supposed to punt and play D? Sorry not my style...

Gibbs put all the pieces in place and Zorn's style seems to be taking them to a new level (especially Campbell). So I think they both deserve a lot of credit.

Of course it's early and I'm really trying to contain my excitment, but right now me so Zorny.
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Old 10-10-2008, 01:05 PM   #40
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

We should take with a grain of salt things about clock management, gameplanning, playcalling, aggressiveness and other strategic decisions only because a coach can be great at things one year and then awful the next for no good reason at all.

However, thus far (5 games) Zorn has made basically all the statistically "correct" decisions. And it's hard to argue that it hasn't helped the Redskins win a bunch of tough games. I'll just argue that his luck will likely even out over time.
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:11 PM   #41
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Hey Schneed, I don't know how to post links, but your tribute to Gibbs made the Redskins Blog.
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:22 PM   #42
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

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Hey Schneed, I don't know how to post links, but your tribute to Gibbs made the Redskins Blog.
Really? Just copy/past the link. That's awesome!
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:25 PM   #43
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Just check the Linkbacks at the top of this thread. It's right there
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:32 PM   #44
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

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Originally Posted by SmootSmack View Post
Just check the Linkbacks at the top of this thread. It's right there
Not sure how to use the linkback feature. It just gives me the think to this thread.

EDIT: I found it, but I still don't know how to use linkback...
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:39 PM   #45
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Re: Thank You - An Open Letter

Quote:
Originally Posted by GMScud View Post
Not sure how to use the linkback feature. It just gives me the think to this thread.

EDIT: I found it, but I still don't know how to use linkback...
Under the Linkbacks you'll see "Posted by"

Click on the URL under there
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