Yogi Berra famously said, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you might end up someplace else.” That sums up two-and-one-half decades of the Washington professional football franchise. Directionless, rudderless, and clueless are all attributes of the Dan Snyder era. So, it was with some measure of contained glee that newly hired Dan Quinn hit the exactly correct note at one point during his introductory presser. Nearly two-thirds of the way into the hour-long affair he was asked about a “Rebuild.” He shrugged off the word: “…this is a recalibrate, you know, finding our North again…” For a ship languishing and long lost in the open ocean it all starts with finding Polaris.Continue reading
When Josh Harris and the new ownership group selected Adam Peters the pronouncement was that, ““We set out to find a leader, someone who could take this franchise to the next level and build an elite team that consistently competes for championships.” Peters in his first pronouncement stated, ““We’re looking for the best leader for this team, for the Washington Commanders.” During a radio interview within the past ten days Hall-of-Fame Coach Bill Cowher was asked what was the primary attribute to consider when hiring a new Head Coach. “He has to be a leader of men, first and foremost.” If you listen to football people long enough you’ll hear variations on this theme over and over, ad nauseum. What does it mean, though?Continue reading
UPDATE 1/12/24: The WFT has hired Adam Peters as the new General Manager. From firing Ron Rivera to hiring Peters took right at 100 hours. Peters is linked to a couple of coaching candidates including Bobby Slowik of Houston and Ben Johnson of Detroit. In-person interviews can begin on Monday the 22nd.
Ian Rappaport is reporting that the WFT GM search is down to two finalists; Adam Peters of the 49ers and Ian Cunningham of the Bears. The choice is supposedly going to happen within a few days.
Peters is a hot commodity. If Harris really wants him then moving quickly is the correct play. More updates coming as events warrant.
There were only a few surprises on Monday. Ron Rivera was fired not long after daybreak. But, his coaching staff was not. In Jacksonville, they kept the Head Coach, but fired pretty much the whole coaching staff. It’s always interesting how teams approach these things. Josh Harris wasted no time in announcing his search team. It includes NBA Executive Bob Myers and Rick Spielman, a former General Manager with the Vikings. Harris also put the pedal to the metal in requesting interviews with Head Coaching candidates. That was pretty visible. The General Manager search is more subterranean. This post will provide updates as they become available.Continue reading
If you dislike amusement park rides the coast into the end is always a relief. This has been a rough autumn and winter for the WFT. That’s the norm. Washington football fandom is not for the feint of heart. This season will end with the proverbial whimper that most do. Tomorrow, or shortly thereafter the team will start the off-season with a bang by dismissing some or all of the coaching and front office staff. Winning the off-season is what the WFT does best. Winning on the field is another matter.Continue reading
One of the very few things these two teams have in common this week is that they both are coming off of losing games. That’s familiar territory for the WFT. Much like the Carthaginian General Hannibal, they will either find a way (to lose) or make a new one. Last weeks loss to the woebegone Jets was yet another example. It’s best if not re-lived. The 49ers simply got their fannies spanked by Baltimore. That crew should be pretty salty when it arrives in DC. This game means a lot to them. Winning their last two games gives them a bye week and home field advantage. On the other hand a loss is meaningful to Washington for draft position.Continue reading
Last week’s game featured yet more injuries to an already poor Offensive Line. This is not a good idea when facing Aaron Donald. The Rams are surging towards an unforeseen playoff run. The WFT is limping towards the offseason. A losing result was expected and delivered. The good news is that this season is nearly over.Continue reading
Ron Rivera‘s first assignment as full-time Defensive Coordinator was to contain the Dolphins. That didn’t go particularly well, did it? Ron tried to cover Tyreek Hill with a rookie Safety one-on-one on two occasions. Two touchdowns later the experiment failed. Ironically, one week later the Tennessee Titans, another team with a poor record showed the League exactly how to beat the Dolphins. If Tua Tagovaiola is on his feet with the ball coming out headed towards Hill or Jaylen Waddle, you’re in trouble. The Titans put heavy pressure on Tua sacking him five times. When he has been sacked four or more times his record is 1-9. Early on they also showed Man coverage only to drop into a single-high zone. The Fins took the bait and ran Waddle over the middle on a crosser… straight at a waiting Safety. Old-Timers call that a “Hospital Throw.” Waddle got whacked. He returned, but was not the same. They roughed up Hill also. Suddenly Miami looked very ordinary. Getting physical on the Fins is the key. The week before Washington did none of that.Continue reading
Washington’s change of ownership signals a beacon of hope for a fanbase long devoid of any. The assumption with such a change is that it will bring improvement. Often the improvement is oversold and under-delivered. The explosive growth in the valuations of professional sports franchises is unlike nearly any other investment. As with most investments, those who bought in early have reaped the largest reward. Those who buy in now, with the market at astronomical levels pay the dearest. The pool of possible buyers is quite small. Recent buyers offer a glimpse of what the new owner might bring to the table. Hint; it’s not particularly reassuring.Continue reading
The last chance for relevance has slipped quietly by the stern. This version of the Burgundy and Gold is in a familiar situation; playing out the string. As hard as it has been to watch at least the ending of any hope was mercifully short. Two losses in five days, both to Division foes did the job. The Thanksgiving Day game to Dallas was predictable. Dallas feasts on lesser teams at home. That’s especially true on Thanksgiving when the audience is huge. Some 40.1 million viewers watched as Dak Prescott and his posse jumped into the Salvation Army bucket and ate turkey legs. It was all such fun…unless you were a Washington fan. Now where is this going?Continue reading
That high-pitched screaming sound you heard last Sunday was probably the football players taking cold showers after the game. If you are a Washington fan you are used to losing to the Giants. It is now 9 losses out of the last 11 games. How bad is that Giants team? Well, given six turnovers the game was still in doubt within the final minute. Try that against Dallas this week and the score would be a stunning rout. It may well be anyhow. But, that loss to the Giants was just unpardonable. If the hot water failure had been confined to the Washington locker room it would have been just deserts. As it was it’s doubtful that the New Yorkers were complaining. They were leaving town surprisingly victorious.Continue reading