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The Bruce Allen/GM Thread

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2 hours ago, Skinsinparadise said:

Craig speculated that Bruce probably heard weeks earlier from Jay that he liked Alex Smith -- and then just ran with that thought at a later time and made a deal.

I wouldn't find this as surprising if this happen to be true. But I would be wondering if Jay liked Alex Smith more than Kirk Cousins or if he liked Alex Smith as a Plan B option if Kirk wasn't going to be back.

That's kind of a different thing.

 

1 hour ago, MassSkinsFan said:

 

If Smith is a smart guy, he'll find ways to make DW and BA look good, and also to make them think they came up with Smith's ideas. That's how you handle an idiot boss.

 

I hope he's that type of smart guy...

I would hope so as well. As for Jay.

 

Problem I do have, is that if those two guys are smart enough to make their idiot boss bright, then the idiot boss won't get fired. And sooner or later those bright smart guy will shop their skill elsewhere where they'll be warmed welcome, leaving us with the idiot boss...

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49 minutes ago, Thinking Skins said:

think that we (Dan Snyder) have a problem with a single point of failure in a GM. Add to that, I think he likes to empower his coaches, kinda with a pick the groceries type of mentality. We've seen that with Spurrier, Gibbs, Shanny and now Gruden.

 

Which is EXACTLY the problem and, ultimately, goes back to his, you guessed it, leadership. That set up fails 99% of the time. The Eagles literally just went through it. 

 

Now, I think you’re wrong about Jay’s role and are, as many have, conflating his role with Bruce’s here (Bruce is his boss, plain and simple, and Jay often doesn’t get what he wants or plays a secondary role in many decisions)... but the overall point remains regarding Dan’s entire tenure. Coaches often get way too much input, and even final say, because their roles are often over-emphasized, and that starts with Dan.

 

Coaches, by default, are short sighted and loyal. Furthermore, they don’t have the time to spend on evaluating personnel and projecting since they’re busy with everything else they do. They shouldn’t be given that power, there’s too much there that can go wrong. 

 

So, yeah, again this ultimately goes back to leadership and how said leadership structures everything. It’s probably my biggest pet peeve about the Skins FO after researching how others operate.

 

This is why a little part of me died inside when I read this quote from Doug during the combine:

 

Quote

“The thing about Jay’s offense is that no matter what he’ll find ways to make sure he’s gonna pass for over 4,000 yards,” said Doug Williams, Redskins senior vice president of player personnel.

http://www.espn.com/blog/washington-redskins/post/_/id/35935/jay-gruden-alex-smiths-mobility-can-help-change-offense

 

It’s so damn frustrating. 

 

It’s the most understated reason for why coaches consistently fail here. 

 

As soon as they bring in a guy who has a specific strength schematically, they use that as justification to get lax on providing them the proper assets to thrive. So their strength becomes minimized, while their weaknesses highlighted. 

 

 We have a tendency to act like successful HCs are this perfect mix of strengths in all facets. No, the vast majority of HCs come from a background of being strong in one phase, be it offense, defense or even ST. The best ones have a support structure around them that highlights their strengths and helps them overcome their weaknesses. It’s even a part of the FO’s hiring process when bringing them in. 

 

But I digress. 

 

Even if it’s true, and Jay's scheme is just that good... the LAST thing you want is your supposed head of personnel saying that.

 

At best, it means he thinks they can get away with not hitting that position hard in terms of evaluations and decision making. At worst, it means that they expect the coach to overcome anything and everything with regards to that position or side of the ball, devaluing the extremely significant personnel acquisition in the process, and will point the blame at said coach when he inevitably fails versus recognizing their own failures personnel-wise. 

 

No, Doug, your job entails that you act like your coaches suck and you need to provide them with the absolute best in personnel for them to succeed. Let the coaches themselves have confidence in their schemes and if they want to think their schemes are so good it’ll automatically succeed, fine, but it should have no effect on you or how you approach things. 

 

It’s terrifying to think this type of mentality went into any of their decision-making regarding Kirk and now the recent trade for Alex. Terrifying. 

 

And that’s why you have that separation of roles and titles. Each side supports the other that way. 

 

It’s sickening they STILL don’t get this. And this is where Dan Snyder’s failure as owner comes into full focus. He’s the guy that ultimately sets these roles up and structures the organization. It’s his philosophy (or lack thereof) that places way too much of an emphasis on coaching and criminally neglects personnel acquisition in a league where everyone is competing to find players. This isn’t friggin High School where you’ve got what you’ve got in players and the difference is the program/coaching. 

 

In the end, I hope I’m simply overreacting and these are all just soundbytes they’re feeding the media. That there’s a much better, more intricate system and process they have for all of this and that Doug’s words there aren’t indicative of any overarching philosophy applied when making decisions. But it’s not promising to me and I don’t think I’m just making it up or being negative for the sake of it. That’s never been how I roll. 

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I dunno @thesubmittedone I was actually thinking about this driving home today and happened to see your post. Dont you think that knowing you have a particular strength means that you can ask the coach to do more with less so that you can focus your available assets to another side of the ball? 

 

Basically I was wondering what you guys thought about asking Jay in particular, who has been touted as one of the best offensive minds in the game, to do more with less offensively, and using the assets on defense and special teams would benefit us or even be a good idea? For the record im not insinuating that it is. I haven't made up my own mind on this point yet. 

 

That may be stupid, I dunno. 

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54 minutes ago, Llevron said:

I dunno @thesubmittedone I was actually thinking about this driving home today and happened to see your post. Dont you think that knowing you have a particular strength means that you can ask the coach to do more with less so that you can focus your available assets to another side of the ball? 

 

Basically I was wondering what you guys thought about asking Jay in particular, who has been touted as one of the best offensive minds in the game, to do more with less offensively, and using the assets on defense and special teams would benefit us or even be a good idea? For the record im not insinuating that it is. I haven't made up my own mind on this point yet. 

 

That may be stupid, I dunno. 

 

It’s a fine line, but in the end you don’t want a strength to diminish in any way.

 

In fact, you can argue the opposite, that you even invest more there because YOU KNOW it’ll work out in terms of development and net gain, making that part of your team an overwhelming strength to where it can overcome any other issues. 

 

Personally, I prefer being as balanced as you can be (relative to a BPA approach that’s in many ways out of your hands) and, of course, starting and ending with the trenches (well, interdependently with the QB position). I don’t think you can ever invest too much on Oline/Dline, except with Oline it’s not necessarily a rotational position so that doesn’t apply as much as it does regarding the Dline. 

 

You just don’t want to fall into that trap where you elevate coaching/scheme above personnel acquisition and decide you can devalue it because it’ll make up for it. That’s the downfall of so many  coaches it’s ridiculous. 

 

Part of why I really like Jay is he’s always been someone who openly states that it’s about the players. Coaches who get that are the smartest ones. And they’ve certainly invested in offense during his tenure. This is what people often miss with a guy like Wade Phillips who, wherever he goes, absolutely stacks his front seven. His scheme is actually relatively simple, people aren’t confused as to what he’s running. He just has major resources expended on that side of the ball and, in particular, the line. 

 

There are times where, if you know you can get a specific skill set on the cheap that fits your scheme, what you’re saying works. Like with Shanahan’s one-cut-and-go zone scheme RBs. But that’s rare, often tied to skill positions, and doesn’t negate the impact an otherwise multi-dimensional elite player would have over them. We even saw his relative lack of investing in the Oline (because he applied that same type of thinking to it) fail for the most part (anytime we had to drop back and pass in 3rd and long situations it was a disaster). 

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No matter what Bruce and company does today, this week, or doesnt do, the only judge of whether they should be fired at the end of the season is do they go 10-6 or better, and make the playoffs.  Anything less means they need to be fired.  Then again last years results said they needed to be fired and see what happened there...

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Not trying to harp on the pros and cons of our front office, but I like that in the press conference yesterday DW named the scouts and thanked them.

 

" We were fortunate enough with the work of [Eric] Schaffer… Here is a guy that hasn’t slept in I don’t know when. He needs some NoDoz, along with Bruce [Allen]. I think they’ve all been sleeping in the building. We [were] fortunate enough to land Paul Richardson, a guy that we watched back in the personnel and the pro department – especially Alex [Santos] and Richard [Mann II] and Jeff [Scott] and Brian [Zeches] and Pete [Picerelli] and Brent [Caprio] and Darryl [Franklin] – spent a lot of hours back there. We all targeted Paul Richardson and we [were] fortunate enough to be able to sign Paul. Paul and his mom and dad [are] here today and I would like to bring Paul up and introduce Paul Richardson.”    "

 

Not saying this means anything but I like that they named the scouts and gave them recognition.

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19 minutes ago, Paul Cumberland said:

Dan Steinberg on point here...  Can't say I'm surprised by what Kim Martin wrote in her piece...

Yup,

 

Just posted the whole story here:

 

There's always everything you need in BHRBN. Page 1, 2 and even 3. Make sure you just don't miss it.

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Wow, yeah, so that very revealing article just revealed our worst fears, but what many of us knew to be true: The Redskins and Bruce Allen lied to us again, and Bruce Allen is the GM, not Doug Williams.

 

Bruce Allen made the trade and then told Williams not to check his phone and see him in the morning, where Williams was then told what "they" had done.  Williams had no idea.  OUR "GM" HAD NO IDEA what had happened and if we had traded for someone!

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I think it was rather obvious that Doug was coached up for the presser yesterday on all the talking points he needed to cover.  My favorite was how he went into detail about “the meeting” where they including Dan discussed QB plans, and then made sure to say that Dan just listened, lol.  

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26 minutes ago, TheShredSkinz said:

I'm sure Doug and all the other scouts new Alex was the target. Bruce makes the deals, the scouts name the targets.

Yep, drama here for dramas sake.

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19 minutes ago, BatteredFanSyndrome said:

I think it was rather obvious that Doug was coached up for the presser yesterday on all the talking points he needed to cover.  My favorite was how he went into detail about “the meeting” where they including Dan discussed QB plans, and then made sure to say that Dan just listened, lol.  

That's a jab at all of the fans who think Dan is still meddling.

 

There are one of two possibilities. Dan went from being an outlandish flashy spender who gassed up Redskins one to get all of the hottest names on the market to now penny pinching building through the draft and retaining our own. OR Dan is really no longer involved. It's one of the two and I have a hard time believing it's option one.

 

And this isn't directed at you but..as far as the whole Doug thing, he's not even our GM. We don't have one which is crazy but fairly certain it's a collective effort between the scouts, Jay, and Bruce. With Bruce actually making the deals. I didn't at all read that as Bruce going behind Doug's back, but rather, Bruce knew that was the target and was excited to let him know that it had gotten done. Just my take.

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41 minutes ago, Skinsinparadise said:
Chuck Sapienza @chucksapienza
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Chuck Sapienza Retweeted Dan Steinberg

Where are all the people that tweeted at myself and @Russellmania621 that we were wrong when we said Bruce has made every decision but 1 over the last 9 years?

 

@KDawg This made me want Thai food. ;):ols: 

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1 hour ago, Skinsinparadise said:
Chuck Sapienza @chucksapienza
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Chuck Sapienza Retweeted Dan Steinberg

Where are all the people that tweeted at myself and @Russellmania621 that we were wrong when we said Bruce has made every decision but 1 over the last 9 years?

 

Which decision didn't he make then?

Hiring Scott?

Thought that was him...

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Just listening to Doug in various interviews, he doesn't give a vibe that he himself is doing much scouting and making recommendations.  Craig Hoffman when asked to describe Doug's role -- he goes from what he heard Doug's mostly a facilitator.  He goes to meetings and listens to the pro scouts and college scouts -- and I gather he goes with the flow of what the scouts are recommending more or less.

 

As for Bruce, I'd bet he does the same where I doubt he's doing his own scouting.  I've never heard Bruce talk about his own evaluation of any player.   As I've said before if Bruce is the dude figuring our compensation for deals and making deals happen along with controlling the money -- that's the dude with the real power.  Laconfora has said the same -- Bruce controls the money so he's the most powerful guy in the organization. 

 

Kyle Smith could be a brilliant judge of talent.  But who is the guy who is setting the parameters of where they want to spend their money and on whom, etc.  That description seems to be Bruce.  And the guy who directs all of that is huge.  So do I think Bruce is saying on his own without any help -- Alex Smith is the target?  I doubt it.  But I presume he's the guy who says making it happen is all me.  He calls Andy Reid -- OK, you want Fuller, fine.  You want a 3rd rounder, too, fine.    Lets roll. 

'

Like I said earlier, Shanny likes to say his beef with the RG3 trade seems to stem about how much they gave up to do it.  Bruce can say hey Shanny told me he likes RG3 so that's all I need to know -- let me do the rest.  OK but "the rest" is a big deal.

 

It's not up to the talent evaluators to do an apples to apples comparison of compensation from one player to another player.  That job looks to be Bruce's.  So lets say their scouts say they like Alex Smith the most then Bradford.  I doubt they are telling Bruce how to weigh the actual transaction and how to do the apples to apples decision -- Alex's age, Fuller, the cost of a third round pick -- versus signing Bradford without giving up anything.  I presume that's Bruce figuring that stuff out.   And IMO that's a really big deal as for power for better or worse. 

 

So I agree with those who say Bruce made the deal without Doug as there is nothing to see here -- not a big deal.  I've said many times, I've heard Doug enough speak about his role and beat guys ditto about Doug -- to deduce he is mostly (but not always) a public figurehead who also I gathers ensures everyone in the FO are on the same page.   Frankly, I don't think I'd want Doug in a more active role than that.

Edited by Skinsinparadise
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On 3/15/2018 at 1:21 PM, Thinking Skins said:

 

As a football junkie I wish I knew more. Al Galdi was running clips from Office Space "so, what would you say you do here" on the front office. 

 

My guess based on stuff that's been said:

 

Dan -- I buy that he's not as involved as in the past.  But tough for me to believe he doesn't insert himself sometimes.  People like to say it was all 20 years ago and not again.  But we've heard stories from the Shanny regime.  That's not that long ago.  I doubt Jay will spill the beans on his boss while employed.  That stuff tends to come out later.

 

Bruce:  Determines where they money is spent.  The philosophy on the contracts.  The philosophy of FA.  Decides if plan A isn't working based on his parameters for compensation whether to kick into plan B, etc.  He determines compensation in deals and to do what it takes to get a deal done or not.  He signs off on everything.  He reports to Dan

 

Doug:  office cheerleader, nice guy.  He goes to all the meetings.  He sorts of synchs everything to Bruce and reports to him.  He does some scouting in person here and there -- to give his take on somethings too.  He's more into the pro scouting than college scouting.  He is the lovable Redskins legend who talks to the media -- in lieu of Bruce who is a lightening rod with the media.   

 

Kyle Smith -- running college scouting.  He makes recommendations.  He reports to Doug.  

 

Santos -- running pro scouting.  He makes recommendations. He reports to Doug.  

 

Scott Campbell -- free for all help for Kyle Smith. 

 

5 minutes ago, TheShredSkinz said:

The disrespect Doug Williams gets here is absurd. A Superbowl winning Qb who has also coached and scouted.

 

 It doesn't matter to me what legendary status they have elsewhere for other roles.  I want a personnel legend. Not a legendary player or coach.  I love Joe Gibbs, talk about legend, do i want him running personnel here?  Nope. 

Edited by Skinsinparadise
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2 hours ago, Skinsinparadise said:
Chuck Sapienza @chucksapienza
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Chuck Sapienza Retweeted Dan Steinberg

Where are all the people that tweeted at myself and @Russellmania621 that we were wrong when we said Bruce has made every decision but 1 over the last 9 years?

 

God, I hate DC media. Where about all the dumbassed things these two morons have spouted over the years?

You were right about 1 thing, **** off.

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In thinking about the Kim Martin article in regards to whole trade situation for Alex some more, I think it may have something to do with separation of duties.  I can see Doug being involved with the scouts coming up with a list and then letting Bruce know that's who they think is best - at which point Bruce takes over and does his thing - which is negotiate with the Chiefs.  The only thing that is surprising to me is the FO not at least keeping Doug in the loop on the result.  He didn't need to be there for the negotiation itself, but to be left out knowing the result only to be informed of it the way it was stated in the article is kinda disrespectful, to me.  Also shows a lack of trust...

 

Anyway, just saw this nugget as well... Woulda thought Jay would have had some input on who he liked ahead of time but perhaps not...

 

 

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I'm not sure how you read that article and takeaway Bruce acted on his own.  It sounds to me like all the personnel folks told Bruce who they liked best then before the deal was done he reconfirmed with Jay.. Hey this is our guy right? Then he told Doug don't check your phone because legally this deal can't be made for another month and a half so I don't want you to confirm anything and get in trouble with the league..i mean am I missing something?? 

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The name Edgar Bergen comes to mind instantly when Bruce Allen is mentioned.

For all of you young whippersnappers, maybe Jeff Dunham is better suited.

 

 Allen is nothing more than a puppet master, pulling strings when and where he deems fit. No one should be a bit surprised at anything that goes on behind closed doors, a la Charlie Rich; it has been this way since he got here, manipulating his way into getting the bathroom key to Snyder's suite.

 

Yet nothing has changed; for years, we've all questioned some of the decision-making, and it should be crystal clear who is behind 99.9% of them. Maintaining mediocrity is an Allen mainstay; regardless of his 'experience' it usually ends up bad, then the finger-pointing and firings begin, fans get in an uproar, then he attempts to put out the very fires he has started.

 

It will never change, never.

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