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I saw this on ESPN and while I don't like John Clayton I do like his answer to a Fans question.............

(There's also a small tidbit about the Skins,but nothing we don't already know.)


I believe all this started around the time Free Agency started which coincidentally is right around the time players and coach's started calling it a business. While I still love the game and our team I do find myself very disappointed in how the NFL has grown shall we say......

To Big for their Britches.

Doesn't anyone realize that when players and coaches keep getting absurd amount of money and put forth only a small amount of effort (some players not all) they are pricing fans right out of the stadium?

Even if TV contracts are footing a lot of money where do you think that money comes from?

I'm going with what they get from advertising plays a pretty big roll.

And then the consumer ends up paying higher prices for the products.

Does that seem correct or am I ill informed?

Q: How come when teams hire a new coach, sometimes the argument is made that the coach doesn't have the players to run his offensive or defensive scheme and then takes two to three years changing the roster and releasing good players. In the end, shouldn't a coach try to find the best scheme that fits the current roster and maximize the talent at hand rather than spending two to three seasons changing the roster?

Eric in Montreal

A: Eric, I agree with you 100 percent. It's driving me crazy watching all these 4-3 teams bring in new coaches and try to switch to the 3-4. Head coaches with Cleveland, San Francisco and the New York Jets lost their jobs while they tried to rebuild their rosters to fit the schemes instead of fitting the schemes to the talents of the players on the current roster. One thing you know about head coaches is they like to pick the players and that's why most new head coaches have 20 or more new players on their roster during their first season. The NFL doesn't give enough time for complete reconstructions of the roster. A team with a top quarterback could buy the coach the time to survive but most teams that hire new coaches don't have that quarterback. That's why teams such as Detroit and Buffalo have been down for as long as they have.

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That last bit you quoted makes it even more obvious why Shanahan traded for McNabb.

Pretty much.

In the main, you don't get far in this league without very good play from the most important position on the field.

It's gona' be a pleasure to see that again back in DC the next few years. It's been too long.


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I agree with the first part of his answer for the most part, but here's my rebuttal to that. When coaches come in, before they put in a new scheme (4-3 to 3-4), they take a look at their personnel, and if they feel that they can make it work, they go ahead and do the switch.

Now, I will say that sometimes they are trying to fit a square peg in a round hole, but if a coach feels that he can implement whatever scheme he has with the current personnel, I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Why doesn't Clayton mention anything about switching offensive schemes? Those change more than the defense when a new coach comes in, and learning a new offensive scheme (West Coast to shotgun spread, power blocking to zone blocking, etc.) would be a lot harder than learning a new defense, IMO.

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Today's NFL is now all about 'Genuises' and their 'Systems'. Part of it is a genuine belief and familiarity with his system, part of it is the expectation to run the system he was so successful with. You will see a West Coast offense guy install the wish bone or spread offense to a new team. With regards to the personell issue, free agency has made it easier to get the players you need to run your system. Coach Joe Gibbs said that he did not have this before and it is like going to the grocery and shopping for your guys, to kind of borrow Bill Parcells comments.

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