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The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

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Old 01-12-2009, 10:53 AM   #1
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The Real Problem of the Redskins ...


The problem with the Redskins | DC Pro Sports Report -- Sports news, stats and analysis from the capital of the free world
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:42 AM   #2
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

This article says it all people. Be prepared to be disappointed as a Redskin fan for a long time if this idiot stays on course.
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:49 AM   #3
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

The article made some very valid, if not obvious, points. The real issue we've had around here since '99 is Snyder. The true test if he's ready to step back and change (which was not really seen as he was very visible in the locker room earlier this season in Dallas and Philly) is after next year if the team struggles will he fire Vinny and will he be able to cede all control to Shanahan. (Cowher and Holmgren aren't coming here).
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:00 PM   #4
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

PennSkinsFan:

Excellent column. Very well written!


I think there is an additional element at work here.

Danny Boy wants to win - just like the other owners want to win - and he wants to win in such a way that he is recognized as the architect of the victory. If he just sat in the owner's box and cheered for his team as it won the Lombardi Trophy, that would not be sufficient because when the accolades were handed out, Danny Boy would be an afterthought. And the absolute worst thing that could happen to Danny Boy is to be an "afterthought"; he has to be at the center of attention - never on the periphery.


I believe these two elements point to the real problem of the Redskins.
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:06 PM   #5
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

The good thing is that Danny is relatively young....and after 20 or so MORE years of learing the trade he may be a good GM. I do think he is showing signs of improvement...so he can learn. If he keeps going through coaches he should learn a little from each one.

So I guess, we all must suffer while Danny learns the trade. Maybe we'll be consistently good when I'm 55!

Damn I wish I had 150 billion dollars. Has he every said how much it would take to sell the team?
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:26 PM   #6
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Quote:
Snyder took over the team after the 1998 season, but so late into 1999 did he take the reins that he couldnít have any impact on the personnel of the team that year. Those Redskins finally made it to the playoffs under Head Coach Norv Turner, winning 10 games and the NFC East division title. The Redskins crushed the Detroit Lions in a home playoff game and then lost narrowly and comically to a fine Tampa Bay Buccaneers team. It seemed the Redskins might have finally turned the corner after drifting between atroicious and mediocre since the retirement of Joe Gibbs after the 1992 season.

Then Dan Snyder began to make decisions.
Snyder, of course, is the first owner ever to want to put his own imprint on a new purchase. Also, let's completely disregard the fact that he has repeatedly admitted to making mistakes early on his ownership.

Quote:
Snyder paid a mint for an old and over-the-hill Bruce Smith, a once-great pass-rusher the Buffalo Bills didnít want anymore. Smith had one good season for the Redskins and then lapsed into a lame and purpose-less [for the Redskins, anyway] pursuit of the NFL career sack title. Deion Sanders was also brought in despite repeated warnings from the Dallas metro area that recent injuries meant he only had 9 working toes and wasnít the player Snyder thought he was getting. Sanders was a slightly-better-than-average cornerback, no improvement on the man shoved into a reserve role, Darrell Green. As a punt returner, Sanders made WR James Thrash look good; Thrash averaged over 3 yards more per punt return than Sanders did. To make room for Sanders on the roster, the Redskins cut RB/RS Brian Mitchell, perhaps the most talented and useful player on the team.
Not excusing Dan Snyder for those moves, he is the owner after all. But the Smith had Gerald Snyder's hands all over it, and B-Mitch had D. Green all over it. Still, let's keep talking about stuff that happened nearly a decade ago

Quote:
And let us not forget QB Jeff George, who lobbied endlessly for the starter job over incumbent [and future Super Bowl champion] Brad Johnson. George, who famously said leadership is ďoverrated,Ē failed utterly in Washington, finishing the 2000 season ineffectually as the starter and then being cut after two weeks by new Head Coach Marty Schottenheimer in 2001. This article from ESPNís Chris Mortensen explains the situation nicely:
George was an unmitigated disaster. And Snyder blew a huge opportunity with Schottenheimer, in my opinion (2nd favorite head coach of all time). But just saying "Snyder was unhappy because he couldn't be the guy" is inaccurate. Guys like Stephen "Fumble when Trying to Run the Clock Out" Davis had no place on Spurrier's offense anyway. Agree though that our draft efforts for several years have been less than stellar

Quote:
Dan Snyder didnít buy the Redskins to make money, though he does intend to make money with the Redskins and does, indeed, do so. Dan Snyder didnít buy the Redskins to win Super Bowls, though he does hope to do that, too. Dan Snyder bought the Redskins to be general manager because being general manager of an NFL team is fun ó particularly if youíve got a lot of money to spend and have no boss to fire you.

Iím going to repeat that because it is important for understanding Snyder and why the Redskins have endured so much losing: Dan Snyder bought the Redskins to be general manager because being general manager of an NFL team is fun ó particularly if youíve got a lot of money to spend and have no boss to fire you.
That's quite an assumption

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What fan hasnít fantasized about being the GM of his favorite NFL team, making the big calls, reshaping the roster, gathering the glory when all those wise and far-sighted decisions yield a Vince Lombardi trophy? All fans have done that. What else is fantasy football, a hugely popular pasttime, if not an attempt to live out GM dreams that will never be realized? Well, Dan Snyder gets to realize those dreams. And itís fun.
Indeed there are times when Snyder has a tendency to be as impetuous as many of the stupid fans of the team. Those days are much fewer and far between. But he was definitely not like that in 2000, and we really need to continue to focus on that year.

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The problem is, Dan Snyder doesnít know how to be the GM of an NFL team. Heís the worst sort of ignoramus ó the kind who thinks heís got it all covered and is completely unaware of how little he knows. Itís not just that Snyder doesnít know what heís doing. If that were the only problem, it would be easily fixed: Snyder doesnít know what heís doing. He realizes this. He hires someone who does. Problem solved. But thatís not the case. The real problem is that Snyder thinks he DOES know what heís doing. When asked if there would be changes in the front office, Snyder has replied that you donít fix something if it isnít broken. As far as Dan Snyder is concerned, the front office of the Washington Redskins is working .
Exactly why they've been revamping the scouting department and other front office personnel over the past two seasons, I suppose. And I know the counter-argument. As long as VC is around you're just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic

Quote:
To sum up the situation:

1. Dan Snyder bought the Redskins to be the GM of the Redskins;

2. Dan Snyder is a terrible GM;

3. Dan Snyder thinks heís a good GM.

Thatís why the Redskins are where they are. And thatís why the Redskins will stay where they are until something or someone changes Dan Snyderís mind about his talents as a general manager.
Great summary...I guess

Quote:
Of course, Dan Snyder has his defenders. These are mostly people who draw a salary from Dan Snyder, of course, but not all. There are fans who appear to appreciate Snyder, who say that the way he spends money proves that he cares about the team and wants to win.

This is irrelevant. Of course Dan Snyder wants to win. Mike Brown, owner/GM of the Cincinnati Bengals wants to win. Al Davis, owner/GM/Coach of the Oakland Raiders wants to win. Bill Bidwell, owner of the Arizona Cardinals wants to win. Every NFL owner wants his or her team to win a Super Bowl every year. The real question is this:

What is Dan Snyder willing to do to win?

And thatís where the problem with the Redskins becomes persistent and chronic. Bill Bidwell wants to win, but not if it means he has to spend a lot of money. Same with Mike Brown of the Bengals. They both want to win on the cheap. Al Davis wants to make all the personnel decisions on his team and pay his coaches a pittance. Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys, the owner Dan Snyder most closely resembles, wants to be GM and head coach of his team. He does serve as GM and he maintains some functions of a head coach, such as hiring various assistant coaches ó something Snyder now does, as well. Jerry Jones wants to win so badly his head is ready to explode. He spent a ton of money assembling the team he has now and is about to move the Cowboys into a gigantic and hugely expensive state-of-the-art stadium. Yet for all his money and all his wishes, Jonesí team hasnít won a playoff game since the 1996 season ó a record of futility that dwarfs even Snyderís.

Clearly, then, wanting to win games and Super Bowls isnít enough. What else does an owner need to do?

Answer: He needs to recognize his limitations. The Cowboys havenít won a playoff game in 12 years because Jerry Jones took over as GM and heís a terrible GM. The Redskins lose so many games despite a high payroll because Dan Snyder is the GM and heís a terrible GM. In general, owners donít make good general managers. To be a good manager or coach or general manager of a sports team, you really need to spend your adult life, at the very least, working at football. You need to be learning about it, watching it on film, talking to other experts, and listening to mentors who know more than you do. A lot of the time what youíll be doing isnít very exciting, but it is necessary to learn your trade. One doesnít wake up and decide that today youíre a chemist or a molecular biologist or a neurosurgeon. You have to study for years to be good at those things. The problem with running a football team is that there are no official qualifications you need to have; all the qualifications are real and important, but theyíre entirely unofficial. But being unofficial doesnít make them any less important or necessary.

By now it must be clear to all, except for Daniel Snyder himself, that heís not competent to run an NFL team. Thereís no shame in that. There is no reason why he should be competent to run an NFL team. He didnít spend most of his life studying the things you need to know to run an NFL team well. We donít assume that someone who is rich enough to buy a hospital is qualified to perform brain surgery. Why should we assume that somone who is rich enough to buy a football team [after borrowing from every bank and relative he could find] is qualified to be an NFL general manager? We should not.
This article is largely based on the assumption that Snyder is the "General Manager" of the team. Ok. Look, clearly Snyder has input. He's the owner of the team, why shouldn't he. But he also has ceded considerable decision making and football responsibilities since his first year as team owner. But some don't want to accept that because the Lombardi Trophies haven't been rolling in at the same rate the money is rolling out.

Are there better owners? Of course. Could we do a lot worse? No doubt. Snyder has his faults. First and foremost indeed is that he still has that bad habit sometimes of falling back into that I'm a fan mode (such as the way Portis is running his mouth without any fear of repercussion it seems).
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:39 PM   #7
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Gotta say I strongly disagree with this assumption that Snyder is GM'ing the team. He has definitely stepped back in recent years to the point now where I honestly think his input on personnel is pretty limited.

Smootsmack sums things up pretty well above.
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:43 PM   #8
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Pretty good op ed, although I don't think Danny is making personnel decisions to the extent that you do. (on a side note, the Giants defensive coordinator is Steve Spagnuolo, not Jim).
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Old 01-12-2009, 12:49 PM   #9
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by SmootSmack View Post
Are there better owners? Of course. Could we do a lot worse? No doubt. Snyder has his faults. First and foremost indeed is that he still has that bad habit sometimes of falling back into that I'm a fan mode (such as the way Portis is running his mouth without any fear of repercussion it seems).
Great response Smoot, spot on!
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:14 PM   #10
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

I think the article is well written. I appreciate what others have said about DS stepping back on decisions and letting Vinny take over. Yet I can't be totally convinced that Vinny's not making decisions w/Snyder in his ear. Two wr's & a TE in last year's draft smells of danny influence. Was Jason Taylor all Vinny's decision (for the record I like the deal at the time, but a 2nd was awful high).

Has Snyder improved? I think so, but it will take a long time for him to truly be able to step aside. Something about the team of Danny/Vinny that rubs people the wrong way, and doesn't seem good for the team. It's not like people hate them because they're jealous of the wins, they just hate them.
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:17 PM   #11
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattyk72 View Post
Gotta say I strongly disagree with this assumption that Snyder is GM'ing the team. He has definitely stepped back in recent years to the point now where I honestly think his input on personnel is pretty limited.

Smootsmack sums things up pretty well above.
I think its hard to really know how much DS has pulled back since all we get is what we hear thru the media. Just because he has given the impression he's pulled back from GMing doesnt mean he really has.
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:22 PM   #12
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

He has gotten a little better. If we draft another WR then I'll be calling for someone's head, as if it mattered.
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:35 PM   #13
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Nobody knows how much The Danny has pulled back from the FO decision making. More than half the stuff coming out of Redskins Park is BS anyway. And even if the Danny is totally out of the decision making process, he still needs to knock some heads with some of the crap that has gone down in the team's recent past. I do not look for us to have a solid winner built til my 50th birthday at the rate we are going. IF we stink next season don't look for JC to be resigned either!!!!!!!
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:37 PM   #14
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by irish View Post
I think its hard to really know how much DS has pulled back since all we get is what we hear thru the media. Just because he has given the impression he's pulled back from GMing doesnt mean he really has.
The problem is we really don't know the exact extent of his involvement to begin with. It's not like he's ever come out and said he pulled the trigger on this move or on that.

Early on he probably was calling more shots than not, but he definitely had input from his Dad, Pepper Rodgers, Vinny, etc. Then for one year Marty took over and was the main guy, then Vinny came back into the fold, then Gibbs, and now Vinny is running football ops and from all indications he is calling the shots and Snyder handles more of the financial end of things, contracts, etc.
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Old 01-12-2009, 01:41 PM   #15
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Re: The Real Problem of the Redskins ...

I agree he has pulled back some, but I don't think it is as much as folks make it out to be. A guy that in the past has been shown to h ave a really big ego(almost like J Jones) can't just all of a sudden give up total command in a matter of 1-2 seasons.
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