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What happened to the calls for continuity?


clarkskin

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As everyone knows, under the leadership of Snyder, our franchise has been in a state of constant flux. Obviously that is not news. And while we are in the midst of a dismal season, I think we need to step back and actually take a close look at what we are dealing with.

Now, I understand this is a "what have you done for me lately" league and that everyone has a short memory and an equally short span of tolerance for subpar play. That is totally understandable, and a case can be made for wholesale changes yet again.

But, that approach has gotten us nowhere for the past decade. And there are some positives and more importantly, signs of new life. The offense is vastly improved, and we are finally getting contributions from the second year guys. The makeshift o-line is playing much better. Injuries have forced guys that otherwise may not see the field to get out there and show what they can do. And many have done well.

As much as many on this board hate Zorn and Campbell, I believe they are showing qualities that this team has lacked in large part in character and heart, grit and determination. Somehow in this circus of a season with all of the FO's interference and distractions that even began in the off-season, Zorn has managed to keep this group together and keep them fighting. That is a very important job for a head coach, and not a task to go unrecognized.

Do we really need to blow things up? I don't believe so. If this does become an uncapped year and if it gives us an opportunity to let some vets go that have crazy contracts (Portis, for one) then I believe we go that route--in a sense doing a mild "house clean" without necessarily "cleaning house."

We clearly need o-line depth, change at free safety, possibly running back, and probably a linebacker. But we have found promising younger talent in Thomas, Kelly, Davis, Orakpo, Tryon, Westbrook etc. We have strong locker room guys in El, Fletcher, and certainly Andre Carter. We have a nucleus to build around.

Again, a case can clearly be made that you can't get much worse than 3-9. I realize that. But what are the viable alternatives? Most will say three things: fire Vinny, get rid of Zorn, and let JC go. I'm all for giving Vinny the axe and finding some real leadership in the FO that can tell Snyder to butt the hell out. But I don't believe that will happen.

That said, I'd rather retain Zorn and find a way to sign JC for another year, and build on our weaknesses through the upcoming draft and find a few pieces via free agency if the low-key options present themselves. Then we can re-evaluate the following year, but would have more pieces in place that a new coach and QB could actually have a reasonable chance of succeeding with.

Perhaps I'm also a bit "old school" in my thinking. I have my roots in an era before free agency when a huge part of supporting the team was actually rooting for the guys themselves. We may have not always had the most talented teams, even in the 90's. But they were fun to root for and we realized that the same guys who failed in a particular year could come through in the years to come.

That is exactly what happened from '88 to '91 when Ryp was at the helm. He was labeled a "choker" who "couldn't win the big one" because of a few years of excessive fumbling and not coming through in the clutch. But he showed promise, and it was fun to go through the growing processes and witness the high's and low's week in and week out. And it paid off. Big time.

So this is all basically food for thought. I don't hate Zorn or JC or most anyone one the team. But those two in particular have earned my respect, and I would love to see them have another more realistic opportunity to succeed. They seem like "real Redskins" to me.

In short, I'd like to give them another go around and see if they can bring back some of the respectability that has been lost for years. Considering the alternatives, I think that is the way to go.

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I'm with you.

I don't even think we necessarily have to get rid of Vinny. One of our biggest weaknesses has been the huge contracts and inflated egos of the underperforming superstars. Portis' contract is ridiculous, and it was made before Cerrato ever had total control.

His 2008 draft was pretty good.

We can't get too high off of one hard fought and well played game against the Saints (which even then was a loss), but I guarantee if that Skins team shows up for 16 games next season and improves in play from the OL/RB positions, we'll be in the playoffs.

Zorn and Cerrato have been at the helm for 2 years and we're already ready to blow it all up.

Will we eventually win the Superbowl with Cerrato? Hell, I don't know, we got a LONG way to go, but I haven't gone back on my original idea to give them 3-4 years, which is what EVERYBODY was saying during the hot start.

Our fanbase is just too fickle overall.

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Hiring another WCO coach would be a lot more continuity than hiring Zorn after Gibbs.

As far as I'm concerned, Zorn has coached himself out of a job. I don't see how anyone could possibly say he's got potential at this point. Hard to believe he would be hired to be even an OC after his time here.

Besides, this team isn't one or two pieces away. So continuity is less of an issue than it was when Gibbs left.

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I'm with you. We definitely have some very good components to build a team around, and some other departments are... adequate. But Zorn (whose job has basically been reduced to figurehead and PR guy) is clearly not our future head coach, and if we stick with a WC style, Campbell (whose mechanics don't mesh in a WC system) is clearly not our future QB. I'm all for continuity, but not when it means retaining those with little potential.

That said, the team has made major strides in the last few weeks, and I really hope the FO maintains this offensive/defensive philosophy for at least the immediate future.

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People usually speak of continuity when winning is involved. Like when a head coach retires after a successful run with a team ..example: The Colts~

In this case, what are you really trying to continue on? Finishing 2-6 last year? Starting 3-9 this year?

When you look at something so silly like bringing someone in to call plays who hasn't even been in the NFL in a while much less had anything to do with this team..and that person actually makes your offense better..it doesn't speak of any kind of success of a head coach. This team is ran in a really complicated, horrible way and I really don't wanna see anything like that continue.

If you keep doing the same old thing then you can expect the same old results.

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The problem now is, so many are so locked into their Danny/Vinny/Zorn must go protests, that nothing will make them change their minds. They'd rather just be right about their assessments, and care about little else.

I'll make a final decision at the end of the season, but right now, I'm not at all against keeping as much of this thing together as we can. At the very least, it would show the next potential coach/GM that if we give him a three year deal, he'll get three years to sink or swim.

And THAT, is looking at the long term.

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And people forget that while Vinny has made plenty of mistakes, as I said we're still suffering from some of the contracts given out under Gibbs.

BRANDON LLOYD is still on our payroll this year, for millions. That ain't Vinny's fault. The huge contract given to Portis wasn't Vinny's fault. There are plenty of things like this.

And yes, there were problems like the Jason Taylor trade that have hurt. We could've used the draft pick, but it seems like they might be learning their lessons. I think this offseason will be huge, and I think they should be given this offseason and next year to show something.

Zorn has these guys fighting in a 3-9 season just as hard as they ever fought for Coach Gibbs in his second run around. He might not be the greatest coach in the league, but that says something. And Sherm Lewis has made a drastic impact. If we give these guys another offseason I think we'll see some strides being made. Zorn, too, will have stuff to learn.

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Like having a new head coach every two years?

What happens with the shiny Shanahan doesn't have us winning in two years?

Both of you are sort of making my point. We've been down the road of shaking everything up for so long that I'm afraid going somewhere like the Shanahan route will just wind up being more of the same. Yet I understand the notion that not changing will bring the same results.

It all boils down to which side of the fence you are on regarding whether or not we have building blocks currently in place. I believe we do.

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I think we are a consistent OL away from having an overall good team.

I have been thinking this for a little while now.

Even if we do draft a QB in the first I still say we sign JC for one more. Keep JZ too. Add a couple OL in the draft and FA.

Those who want JZ gone seem to really ignore the fact that the players are still playing hard for him. That should speak volumes to people. If the players didn't respect Zorn they wouldn't play like we are fighting for a playoff berth.

This team IS just a few key pieces away from being 2010 version of Cincinnati. We are right there in all of our games, consistent OL and secondary play away from many more wins.

I hope we don't draft a QB. Suh, Berry, Mays, OL, or Gerhart are my choice.

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Can someone please explain why they think keeping Zorn is a good idea outside of the fact some players are still putting it on the line? It certainly can't be his offensive scheming. Or his game management.

I am just baffled at what people see in Zorn that makes them think he has potential to be a good HC.

We could've used the draft pick, but it seems like they might be learning their lessons. I think this offseason will be huge, and I think they should be given this offseason and next year to show something.

I haven't heard that before. Like, every single season.

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LOL at people wanting to keep anything the same

Here are some facts

The Redskins are not progressing

This team has been one of the bottom 5 teams this decade

We are 5-15 over the last 20 games

The talent on this team is old over paid and hollow

The culture in general is poison.

How a 1-3 stretch proves the team is "improving" is beyond me

There is a HUGE difference between Marty Schottenheimer, post 2001 or Joe Gibbs to Gregg Williams post 2007 "continuity" and Steve Spurrier 2003, Jim Zorn 2009 continuity.

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We are in a state where we don't even know what is wrong.

Is it Vinny's picks?

Is it Gibb's picks?

Is it overpaid superstars?

Is it the players not fitting the system?

Is it the wrong system in the first place?

Is it because we have no OL?

Is it the QB?

Is it the Head Coach?

Is it the lack of depth?

Are we a running team?

Are we a passing team?

Are we a defensive team?

Who is calling the plays?

Personally I feel like all of these questions and the lack of answers come from the top. The Redskins no longer have an identity and that is squarely on the shoulders of management and ownership. There is not a team in the league that has to ask almost ALL of these questions on a weekly basis. No matter what you think of Snyder, he has to be kept out of decisions. His relationship with Cerrato will never allow that, so Cerrato has to go and we hire a GM. That is the most important thing that could come of all of this. In my opinion. As long as that happens, I'm good with keeping guys like Campbell and whatever coach the GM decides, including Zorn.

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The Redskins are not progressing

This team has been one of the bottom 5 teams this decade

The same could have been said about the cowboys when Jimmy Johnson had them going 1-15 in the first Aikeman year or the Colts in Mannings 3-13 first season, or the Seahawks while Hasselbeck was getting it ...

Difference between those teams and ours, is thier fan bases took the lumps and stuck with something and got through the hard times and becames something special .

Look at the Dolphins in 2007 . They were horrible going 1-15 ... but they kept every single game close . They lost to the Steelers 3-0 they beat the Ravens for their only win . They were snake bitten and racked with injuries and then in 2008 Parcells comes in and makes what were actually minor changes, he didn't blow the team up, his major additions were Jake Long and Philip Merling and a smash mouth coach and the team went 11-5 the year later .

I think we are not far from being a winning team possibly a year or two away right now IF WE KEEP GOING THE PATH WE ARE. The fact we went 5-11 and 6-10 under Gibbs has little to do with what is happening now . The only thing that is affecting us from GIbbs II is the salary cap and lack of picks hang over .

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Look at the Dolphins in 2007 . They were horrible going 1-15 ... but they kept every single game close . They lost to the Steelers 3-0 they beat the Ravens for their only win . They were snake bitten and racked with injuries and then in 2008 Parcells comes in and makes what were actually minor changes, he didn't blow the team up, his major additions were Jake Long and Philip Merling and a smash mouth coach and the team went 11-5 the year later .

I think we are not far from being a winning team possibly a year or two away right now IF WE KEEP GOING THE PATH WE ARE. The fact we went 5-11 and 6-10 under Gibbs has little to do with what is happening now . The only thing that is affecting us from GIbbs II is the salary cap and lack of picks hang over.

Parcells also likely brought an important change of culture to the Dolphins as well........do we think Vinny and Zorn have the gravitas for that?

I think going 5-11 and 6-10 under Gibbs speaks a lot to where we are now......namely that this team just hasn't been very good.

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We are in a state where we don't even know what is wrong.

.

Well, we do know quite a few things. We have ten guys on IR on offense who were starters. That's bound to cripple a team. Now, before we can make that an excuse for production we ought to actually look at some of the names...

We couldn't have predicted Cooley would fall, but Samuels, Thomas, and Portis were pretty obvious. We knew that Portis was slowing down and not very productive last year and he has a history of missing games at the end of the season. Samuels and Thomas came off surgery and were somewhat limited even in the preseason. It was a terrible lack of foresight to really depend on a number of these players. It was a failure on our part because we knew that they couldn't contribute. We did pick up a couple of very long shots in free agency, but even Dockery was a gamble considering he played his way off the team in Buffalo and was coming into a different system.

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LOL at people wanting to keep anything the same

Here are some facts

The Redskins are not progressing

This team has been one of the bottom 5 teams this decade

I think we are progressing. When some of the younger guys that Vinny/Zorn drafted finally got in to play because of injuries, they've showed a lot of potential.

We are 5-15 over the last 20 games

Interesting that you actually decided to ignore Jim Zorn's whole body of work when he hasn't even been here 2 years.

The talent on this team is old over paid and hollow

Absolutely. And those old, overpaid, hollow players were brought in before Jim Zorn/Vinny were in charge. They were brought in to build a team that was meant to win three/four years ago. It didn't happen. We're still suffering the effects of those contracts/players. I think this is your best point and think Zorn/Cerrato could continue to bring in solid players that can take the places of those old guys.

The culture in general is poison.

Up until Portis got hurt.

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OK to the post above if we include ALL of Zorn's games, we are talking 11-17, which isn't exactly setting the world on fire. And the idea that the team has regressed as opposed to progressed record wise in his tenure, IMO is a relevant point.

Besides being a nice guy and classy individual where has he made his mark as a HC? Has he really impressed as a play caller? Vinny clearly didn't think so and took those duties away from him. I have heard some defend that play calling wasn't the problem but do you recall ANYONE saying wow Jim Zorn is very creative play caller?

Clock management has been a train wreck. And that's one of his few duties left. Not to mention all the timeouts they squander. By Zorn's own admission he isn't a motivational type and doesn't believe in pep talks, says players should motivate themselves. You don't read about Zorn being a workaholic type who works to the wee hours of the night game planning.

Jaws, Gannon, and Peter King have watched their practices and have said that they weren't impressed with how they prepare. The Redskins players gleefully said that training camp was very light.

I kind of agree with Thom Loverro from the WT about Zorn. He is a nice guy, players like him. Things are much more pleasant around him than the typical coach, he won't berate players for the most part or work them to death. So they like the easy atmosphere. It would be fine if they were winning. But they are not. And a lot of the better coaches are tougher, work harder and expect their players to work harder.

The best at the moment we can say about Zorn is once he was removed from his primary duty, that specific part of the team took off. And the most obvious way IMO to take that ia if you remove someone who looks incompetent in a duty and replace that person with someone with a pedigree of competence -- and that duty all of a sudden is done well. Yeah, maybe its coincidence. But it seems plausible that it isn't.

And its not like people are totally shooting in the dark here. Thomas and Kelly were asked what has charged up the offense, their answer Sherman Lewis. I would assume they would have more of an idea than us on the board.

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