Jump to content
Washington Football Team Logo

If you're worried about the team letting up . . .


Recommended Posts

. . . fuhgedaboudit!

Fred Smoot Rookie Diary, November 28:

Editor's Note: Rookie cornerback Fred Smoot played an integral role in Washington's 13-3 win in Philadelphia this past Sunday. Along with fellow cornerbacks Champ Bailey and Darrell Green, Smoot suffocated the Eagles' receivers and allowed the rest of the defense to contain the Philly running game and quarterback Donovan McNabb. Smoot and the Redskins battle Dallas at FedExField this Sunday (4:15 p.m. kickoff). The Cowboys defeated the Redskins 9-7 in Week 5 earlier this season.

by Fred Smoot

Wednesday, November 28, 2001

When I was writing these diaries earlier this season during some tougher times, I tried to explain my feelings about being 0-5. I couldn't really explain how I felt about the tough start, because I had never experienced that on the pro level. I knew I was playing hard, I knew the team was playing hard, but we just couldn't make it happen, we couldn't get that first win.

But then we got that first win, and my injury healed. We hit our rhythm and we started winning a few games. Now instead of being talked down, we're the talk of the town! But that's the NFL. It just showed me how the business of the NFL can work. It's up and down. When you're not doing well, nobody wants to be around you or have anything to do with you. Then when you're up, everybody's around. And they're not asking why anymore because they know why. But it's been a good ride so far, and I know the ride isn't over yet. The sky's the limit for this team.

Philadelphia was a great win for us. Their fans were crazy, though. With about three minutes left, we were on offense and I was on the sidelines. I looked up into the stands and it looked like there was a fight. I kept watching and there was a guy with my jersey on getting yelled at by Philly fans! And they actually ran him and his friend out of their seats! I couldn't believe it. That was the first time I had ever seen something like that.

Our defense played very well against the Eagles. What happened was simple: everybody knew their assignment, and everybody executed their assignment. Everyone knew where they were supposed to be, and they were there. We didn't have four interceptions or five sacks, it was just solid defense. First down, second down, third down, and we're off the field. Right now, we're playing very fundamental, sound defense.

The cornerback trio of Champ Bailey, Darrell Green and myself is almost a perfect combination right now. We can match up with any team and play man-to-man. That really helps us as a defense. If we can take the receivers out of the game with the corners, we can do pretty much what we want against the run. Philadelphia does that kind of thing all the time with Troy Vincent and Bobby Taylor. I watched our offense have to take on a blitz of nine players! They blitzed the free safety and the strong safety! I didn't think they did that in the NFL, but you can do it if you have two corners like them.

So, we were on the bottom of the totem pole for a while, and now we've climbed to the middle of it. We're still climbing the mountain. Each game from here on in becomes really important. Every game is important, but the playoff field is now being narrowed down, and each play becomes so important.

The first Dallas game still burns me. I didn't even get to finish that game because I got injured. I really have a chip on my shoulder. We owe them one from the first time, because we let them slip through our fingers. That should have been our first victory. They didn't really do anything to win that game. We gave them that game. And we feel we could be 6-4 instead of 5-5 right now.

I really don't know what happens between teams in a rivalry that one team can beat another team eight straight times like the Cowboys have done to us. It's one of those things you can't explain. That's a rivalry though. Records really don't matter in a rivalry. One team can be 0-8, the other team can be 8-0, it doesn't matter. The game will still be the closest game of the year.

Dallas is starting a rookie quarterback this week, Quincy Carter. He's coming off an injury and I know how that can be, because I did it a few weeks ago. I had the luxury of easing back into my position, though, because Darrell is such a great player. It's tough coming back off an injury as a rookie in the NFL. This game is a game of rhythm, so it could be tough for Carter.

Everybody's really pumped up for the game. I looking forward to a packed FedExField to help us beat Dallas!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Funny bit on the Eagles fans. I've never been to a game at the Vet, but I hear it's not fun if you're sporting 'Skins gear. Freddy's story just affirms that.

I think we're going to win this one(unless we fall prey to the SI cover curse), but I'm kind worried about 'Zona. We've traditionally had letdowns against them, but then again, that was with Norv at the helm. I'm just worried that if we murder Dallas, we'll be flat for 'Zona. Hopefully Marty will do a better job than Norv though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

LaVarr is certainly starting to sound like the kind of guy you want leading the defense. The kind of inspired "I wanna hit something" attitude that leads to all-game intensity.

I'm starting to wonder if we've got another (dare I say it) Lawrence Taylor: The kind of defender that opposing offenses game plan around.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I first moved here back in the good 'ole days of RFK, I really wanted to see the Skins play in person again as I had up to that time only seen them play once. So, I asked my Dad if we could make a road trip up to Philly to catch them playing the Eagirls since we weren't a member of the patrician classes who had access to Skins tix at RFK or the $$$ to pay scalpers to buy them. He turned a funny shade of red (which isn't easy to do since we're black) and said "absotively posolutely NO!!" He then described how "The Chief" got his a$$ kicked at the vet one year.

I never entertained that particular thought again.

I've always thought it was cool that even lousy stinkin' cowgirls fans don't have to fear for their safety at Skins games....their pride maybe (wait, they always seem to win lately so I'll retract that) but not their safety.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...