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Evaluating Jay Gruden in 2018


Voice_of_Reason

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1 hour ago, TD_washingtonredskins said:

 

Even removing that, it would seem that any of the 32 head coaches in the NFL need only spend a couple hours of their lives dedicated to the math involved to draw up a cheat sheet (if needed). It really isn't THAT complicated. 

 

I boil this stuff down to there just being entirely too much chaos going on in the heat of the game.  I think it’s why a lot of coaches are bad at it.  While you can probably sum up a lot of it to a cheat sheet, it’s gotta be crazy trying to think about that in the midst of everything else.  I like Sheehan’s idea that they employ a clock management guru to specifically handle all clock related duties.

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On 6/20/2018 at 3:43 AM, volsmet said:

 

A new QB, new RB, new WRs behind a line that won't likely play a ton in the preseason. Game one is likely to be about the defense. We are likely to start Smith, Doctson, Guice, & Richardson - thats not going to be a quick build imo. Buddha Baker is going to be incredible, imo, they have pieces to cause problems, we need to create turnovers, have a great special teams game, & work the clock. Imho. 

Alex Smith is a 14 year vet and lit it up immediately in KC when he got there originally.  Gruden's offense is off of the Andy Reid's offensive tree.  Different terminology, same concepts.  Alex should pick it up.

 

We see rookie RBs lead the league in rushing and be immediately productive all the time.  

 

Richardson was the WR they targeted in FA.

 

The roster looks as good as it has in a while, and the first two games are against teams with new HC's and look to be rebuilding.  Anything can happen, but if you're a team who's going to content for a playoff spot, you've got to win those games before the tough part of the schedule starts.  

 

On 6/20/2018 at 3:43 AM, volsmet said:

As for Jay, I did want to fire him, but only to keep McVay. My plan was to hire McVay, trade Kirk & move up for Deshaun Watson. That would have been nice, until Watson tore his knee again. Of course, I had just binge watched Cheers -- emotions were running high, times were wild...borderline unsafe, in volsmettown USA. 

 

 

I would have kept McVay in a heartbeat.  And I said as much before he even took the Rams job, and then did a great job.  I was roundly scolded for it.  

 

That said, this thread is about evaluation criteria for 2018 for Jay.  I think with the improvements at WR, RB and DL, we should expect him to be able prepare the team well for the start of the season, and have a more consistent running game.

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Nothing has changed. There's only one thing Jay will ultimately be judged on and that's his final overall record.

If he can't win at least 8 games, then his tenure here is over.  How he gets to at least 8 wins is up to him.  If he

can't do that; it's over for him.

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On 6/21/2018 at 3:58 PM, ShaunAlexanderSkinsYears said:

Jay should be fired if he loses the first game of the season again. There is no excuse to having the entire off season to prepare and to ALWAYS lose game 1. He should have been let go when he did not give RG3 a chance.

Are you sniffing RG3's jock strap or something?

 

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On 6/21/2018 at 2:58 PM, ShaunAlexanderSkinsYears said:

Jay should be fired if he loses the first game of the season again. There is no excuse to having the entire off season to prepare and to ALWAYS lose game 1. He should have been let go when he did not give RG3 a chance.

I was with ya untill the "should have been fired"...rg3 lost his chance after 2012..again another Snyder booger..

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7 hours ago, pjfootballer said:

Eight wins? Screw that noise. It’s his 5th season. Time to step up to the big boys table and win at minimum 10 games. I want to see 11 plus. Tired of low standards around here.

 

I'm moving toward this direction as we get closer to the season.. 


I'll admit that part of me wants to give Gruden a bit more of a leash because of the situation he walked into.  It took 3 years just to get the roster turned over to become a competitive team in regards to talent.  Add to that, the wonders of our Front Office, Gruden hasn't actually been playing with a full deck.  I feel the last 2 years have been more in line with giving him a fair shot regarding the players on the field, and Alex Smith SHOULD be a major piece in continuing that trend.   

 

That said there are 2 points I'll make regarding that.... 

 

The first, this has the chance to be the most talented team we've seen in over a decade.  I'd almost argue that this is the best team we've had since we were 10-6 way back in 1999.  It's the 1st time in I don't know how long I can truly look at the team and count on 1 hand the question mark positions (CB, WR), and there is 1 glaring hole (LG). 

 

The second, I can't keep seeing the mental breakdowns within the games.  Clock management, questionable playcalling, and watching these guys seemingly quit at times.  I can't watch us run weak side into the teeth of the defense with a 14 pt lead when we need 1 yard when half your starting O-line is hurt.  I don't want us to 'run the ball' to say we did it.  We need to do it, and try to be effective when doing so.  

 

Jay is a better than average play designer and caller... My concerns is not the plays he's calling, but when he's calling them.  The offense works, it just seems like we can't get out of our own way at times.   

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On 6/21/2018 at 2:09 PM, BatteredFanSyndrome said:

 

I boil this stuff down to there just being entirely too much chaos going on in the heat of the game.  I think it’s why a lot of coaches are bad at it.  While you can probably sum up a lot of it to a cheat sheet, it’s gotta be crazy trying to think about that in the midst of everything else.  I like Sheehan’s idea that they employ a clock management guru to specifically handle all clock related duties.

 

 

Danny Smith did it for Gibbs.  And I agree with the critics who say Jay struggles with it.   I liked to read Jay owning up to that as an area to improve in the WP article.     Really almost every coach has a weakness or two maybe sans Belichick. 

 

You got really low expectations for the team from most within the national media, ex-players, etc -- to most of them this team stinks for whatever reason and Jay subsequently is one of the hottest candidates to get canned at the end of the season.  The local media on the other hand is mostly optimistic. 

 

I get the vibe from Jay's statements, Doug, Bruce, etc that expectations are high -- theory is all these guys coming back from injury is like having a bounty new FA crop.  I don't subscribe to that personally because injured players coming back aren't typically slam dunk immune to further injury and or sometimes take awhile to find their stride.  Jordan Reed, Chris Thompson, Trent Williams -- arguably the three most important players are all coming back from major injury especially Trent.

 

But I agree its a no excuses season whether its warranted or not.  All the inflated hype about Alex (I like the dude but reading some clippings and comments from fans, feels like we just acquired Tom Brady) I think adds to the pressure.  So I do think if they go 8-8 or under Jay might be gone.

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3 hours ago, Skinsinparadise said:

 

 

Danny Smith did it for Gibbs.  And I agree with the critics who say Jay struggles with it.   I liked to read Jay owning up to that as an area to improve in the WP article.     Really almost every coach has a weakness or two maybe sans Belichick. 

 

You got really low expectations for the team from most within the national media, ex-players, etc -- to most of them this team stinks for whatever reason and Jay subsequently is one of the hottest candidates to get canned at the end of the season.  The local media on the other hand is mostly optimistic. 

 

I get the vibe from Jay's statements, Doug, Bruce, etc that expectations are high -- theory is all these guys coming back from injury is like having a bounty new FA crop.  I don't subscribe to that personally because injured players coming back aren't typically slam dunk immune to further injury and or sometimes take awhile to find their stride.  Jordan Reed, Chris Thompson, Trent Williams -- arguably the three most important players are all coming back from major injury especially Trent.

 

But I agree its a no excuses season whether its warranted or not.  All the inflated hype about Alex (I like the dude but reading some clippings and comments from fans, feels like we just acquired Tom Brady) I think adds to the pressure.  So I do think if they go 8-8 or under Jay might be gone.

You’ve touched on this before yourself, but I really think it’s because we don’t have a Wentz or Zeke or Beckham. Star players with recognizable brands league wide. Those guys generate a ton of hype and for good reason. And as a national guy, it’s kind of hard for you to know the ins and outs of every team so it’s easy to latch onto a star player and generate hype through that. Now, in the Giants case they have two guys like that with Barkley being added to the mix.

 

Some of our best players like Williams and Scherff are OL and don’t generate much excitement on a national level. They don’t play a flashy position. But make no mistake, I take Trent Williams over Zeke or Beckham any day of the week and twice on sundays. O also take our roster over theirs by a pretty sizable margin. Eagles> Redskins though. 

 

You’ve touched on this as well, but I think Guice’s personality and talent have the potential to be that kind of star player for us.

 

Also side note, I’ve been thinking about what you said about listening to KC guys wanting Alex out and being frustrated with him. And then I got to thinking why or how that may be considering his numbers and wins the past 5 years. But sometimes when you continue to make the playoffs and don’t advance, you get a bit spoiled and don’t appreciate what you really have. See the Caps before this year and some people wanting to ship Ovi off. Not comparing Alex and Ovi or saying Smith is better than he really is. But it’s a comparison that came to mind being a big CAPS fan and understanding how frustrating it is to continue to be great in the regular season but be let down in the post season time and time again. It can lend itself to not fully appreciating what you already have. Just a thought. And I think it somewhat applies to Kirk Cousins here, although he really did seem to falter in big moments and we didn’t consistently reach the post season with him.

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21 hours ago, HardcoreZorn said:

You’ve touched on this before yourself, but I really think it’s because we don’t have a Wentz or Zeke or Beckham. Star players with recognizable brands league wide. Those guys generate a ton of hype and for good reason. And as a national guy, it’s kind of hard for you to know the ins and outs of every team so it’s easy to latch onto a star player and generate hype through that. Now, in the Giants case they have two guys like that with Barkley being added to the mix.

 

Agree, its seems like part of the soup for sure.

 

21 hours ago, HardcoreZorn said:

 

Some of our best players like Williams and Scherff are OL and don’t generate much excitement on a national level. They don’t play a flashy position. But make no mistake, I take Trent Williams over Zeke or Beckham any day of the week and twice on sundays. O also take our roster over theirs by a pretty sizable margin. Eagles> Redskins though. 

 

I hate Beckham the guy.  But if he comes back full force from his injury, I'd take him over Trent.  A good LT is critical but Beckham can just take over a game when he's hot.  I was hoping the Giants would trade him this off season when the rumors surfaced.  The team is so dependent on that guy its insane.  Giants don't seem even competitive without Beckham.

 

21 hours ago, HardcoreZorn said:

 

You’ve touched on this as well, but I think Guice’s personality and talent have the potential to be that kind of star player for us.

 

I don't want to jinx the dude. I think he will be a a star, my man crush on him goes back to last fall.  Ironically I didn't cool my jets until a week or so before the draft when there were so many rumors of the Eagles taking him with their late first.   The funny thing for me is it was hard to miss how dynamic he was on the field and also on the sidelines, and I talked about it plenty on the draft thread -- but I had no idea he was like this off the field, too.  So yeah I got off the charts expectations for him.  I am flying a long way to the opener largely because I want to see his debut.

 

21 hours ago, HardcoreZorn said:

 

Also side note, I’ve been thinking about what you said about listening to KC guys wanting Alex out and being frustrated with him. And then I got to thinking why or how that may be considering his numbers and wins the past 5 years. But sometimes when you continue to make the playoffs and don’t advance, you get a bit spoiled and don’t appreciate what you really have. 

 

The rap on him from some of the KC guys -- as to the detractors. Cliff notes: he is a good, not a great QB.  He didn't put up 4000 yards until last year when he got arguably the passing offensive supporting cast in the league or close enough. Only had one season over 3500 yards.  He's very dependent on the running game and supporting cast.  His running ability is a key part of this game but how much is that going to last as he gets older?   T. Hill was wide open last year on go routes -- KC had the best statistically speaking WR separation in the league.   Alex struggled some in the middle to later in the season when teams played heavy zone.  He's not the guy you want with the game on the line, not hot in the red zone, not the guy you want in the playoffs.   But he's a classy-super nice guy and teammates really like him. But even among his fans in KC they don't see him as special. 

 

For me personally, I think he's a good enough QB.  I think the he doesn't play well in the crunch is a but overdone because he's stats in the playoffs are good.  I haven't really paid attention to him in the clutch during the season.  He's not always been hot in the red zone but I put that on multiple players not just one.  As for him not being the type who will carry the team -- I am just not a believer in QBs carrying any team.  So I am all good with Alex.  But I think people need to take it easy on him with the expectations and as for Jay yeah I don't think inflated expectations help his job security.  So I am not really a fan of some of the over the top Alex is all that hype that I see on twitter -- if he lives up to it then great -- but if he doesn't it sets Alex/Jay up for an unfair let down IMO.

 

 

 

 

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50 minutes ago, Skinsinparadise said:

I hate Beckham the guy.  But if he comes back full force from his injury, I'd take him over Trent.  A good LT is critical but Beckham can just take over a game when he's hot.  I was hoping the Giants would trade him this off season when the rumors surfaced.  The team is so dependent on that guy its insane.  Giants don't seem even competitive without Beckham.

Have to disagree here. Beckham is a special WR and I don’t at all let his personality cause me to forget how good he can be. But Trent is a special LT and is invaluable on every single play in the pass and run game. It really just comes down to positional importance. The Giants were 0-4 with Beckham last year before he went down in the Chargers game so it’s not as if they were some powerhouse that fell apart once he was injured. Receivers in general just don’t touch the ball enough to warrant taking over a similarly talented player at a position that protects the blind side of the most impactful player in the game. Obviously also pivotal in the run game and Trent does even better work there. So yeah, I’ll take Trent, A top 1-3 LT over Beckham who is a top 1-3 WR. Just my opinion. 

50 minutes ago, Skinsinparadise said:

 

 

I don't want to jinx the dude. I think he will be a a star, my man crush on him goes back to last fall.  Ironically I didn't cool my jets until a week or so before the draft when there were so many rumors of the Eagles taking him with their late first.   The funny thing for me is it was hard to miss how dynamic he was on the field and also on the sidelines, and I talked about it plenty on the draft thread -- but I had no idea he was like this off the field, too.  So yeah I got off the charts expectations for him.  I am flying a long way to the opener largely because I want to see his debut.

Yeah I’ve read this board for a long time and knew were high on him. I do have a good feeling about him. The fact there are even a minority of draft geeks who rated him over Barkley is pretty amazing to be honest considering how special Barkley was as a prospect.

50 minutes ago, Skinsinparadise said:

 

 

The rap on him from some of the KC guys -- as to the detractors. Cliff notes: he is a good, not a great QB.  He didn't put up 4000 yards until last year when he got arguably the passing offensive supporting cast in the league or close enough. Only had one season over 3500 yards.  He's very dependent on the running game and supporting cast.  His running ability is a key part of this game but how much is that going to last as he gets older?   T. Hill was wide open last year on go routes -- KC had the best statistically speaking WR separation in the league.   Alex struggled some in the middle to later in the season when teams played heavy zone.  He's not the guy you want with the game on the line, not hot in the red zone, not the guy you want in the playoffs.   But he's a classy-super nice guy and teammates really like him. But even among his fans in KC they don't see him as special. 

 

For me personally, I think he's a good enough QB.  I think the he doesn't play well in the crunch is a but overdone because he's stats in the playoffs are good.  I haven't really paid attention to him in the clutch during the season.  He's not always been hot in the red zone but I put that on multiple players not just one.  As for him not being the type who will carry the team -- I am just not a believer in QBs carrying any team.  So I am all good with Alex.  But I think people need to take it easy on him with the expectations and as for Jay yeah I don't think inflated expectations help his job security.  So I am not really a fan of some of the over the top Alex is all that hype that I see on twitter -- if he lives up to it then great -- but if he doesn't it sets Alex/Jay up for an unfair let down IMO.

 

 

 

 

I don’t disagree with your overall take that Alex is a good but not great QB and certainly the expectation of some on Twitter is out of whack. But I will say I think there is something very real to the belief stats only tell you so much. Some guys just know how to put their team in position to win, stats be damned. And some have high volume stats but aren’t composed enough in key situations to make the plays that don’t show up in the stat sheet. Haven’t watched Alex yet enough to definitely say that about him, but get the vibe that he could be that kind of quarterback.

 

But my overall point was that fans and media can often times be fickle and frustration causes them to say things that aren’t very smart. They also have Pat Mahomes, who I really do like as a prospect, so they have good reason to be excited for the next guy.I think the fact the Browns, Denver, etc. all wanted a piece of Alex Smith when there were so many options out there this off season tells me he’s pretty well regarded in NFL FO’s. And I really do believe we have a good enough supporting cast that allows us to take a good but not great QB to the playoffs. And once you get in, anything can happen. 

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This team better play their main guys in full game situations during the preaseason.

 

i’m tired of them looking like ass, playing like ass and then having fans defend them by saying “preseason is meant to be vanilla”.

 

 

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1 hour ago, HardcoreZorn said:

Have to disagree here. Beckham is a special WR and I don’t at all let his personality cause me to forget how good he can be. But Trent is a special LT and is invaluable on every single play in the pass and run game. It really just comes down to positional importance. 

 

I think Trent is a great player but I disagree on your overall point.   I agree LT >WR.  But as some have said Beckham is a transcendent type of player so he goes beyond the position.  But i am not spending any time promoting the player I hate the most in the NFL so I won't argue further.

 

1 hour ago, HardcoreZorn said:

 

Yeah I’ve read this board for a long time and knew were high on him. I do have a good feeling about him. The fact there are even a minority of draft geeks who rated him over Barkley is pretty amazing to be honest considering how special Barkley was as a prospect.

 

If the team busts out with a big season my gut is no one will be more responsible for it then him because he brings an element they haven't had in years.  I don't see Alex as an upgrade over Kirk.  I think they are similar.  I like Payne but don't love him they way I do for example love Jonathan Allen.  But Payne should help.  I see the season about Guice, J. Allen, Reed.  Hopefully they are all healthy.  I like other players of course beyond them but I feel like i can count on them -- Kerrigan for example is always healthy, etc. 

 

1 hour ago, HardcoreZorn said:

I don’t disagree with your overall take that Alex is a good but not great QB and certainly the expectation of some on Twitter is out of whack. But I will say I think there is something very real to the belief stats only tell you so much. Some guys just know how to put their team in position to win, stats be damned. And some have high volume stats but aren’t composed enough in key situations to make the plays that don’t show up in the stat sheet. Haven’t watched Alex yet enough to definitely say that about him, but get the vibe that he could be that kind of quarterback.

 

To the point about him being a dude who just knows who to put the their team in position to win -- plenty of KC fans, media don't seem to dub Alex as that guy.  They deem him as a system QB, load him up with weapons and he will distribute the ball to them. And do that part well -- good QB but not the type who will out duel the great ones in big spots.  I recall reading an article about how Alex was deemed a choker in his first few seasons in KC, struggling in key spots and come back moments -- then the season after he had if I recall 2-3 big come back games and the quote was something like unprecedented for Alex to play that way in big moments.

 

As I've said before the Alex and Kirk critics are almost word for word on the same page about both.  Need supporting cast.  Up and down in big spots.  Up and down in the red zone.

 

I personally think the criticisms of both Kirk and Alex are over the top and you can find plenty of examples to refute them.   Alex was arguably at his career peak at the beginning of last season.  I see the argument for Alex is he's developing as a QB and we haven't seen the best of him yet -- all that experience is coming home to roost.   Personally, I got no idea one way or another.  But I think he's good enough to take them to the playoffs but he like any QB needs some good players around him.  If I think Alex had the offense we had last year with those injuries, we'd have been in the playoffs?  Nope.   But if Guice is a stud.  Reed is healthy.  Doctson/Richardson play well, O line stay healthy -- I can see 10-6. 

 

 

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, Skinsinparadise said:

 

I think Trent is a great player but I disagree on your overall point.   I agree LT >WR.  But as some have said Beckham is a transcendent type of player so he goes beyond the position.  But i am not spending any time promoting the player I hate the most in the NFL so I won't argue further.

I disagree he’s transcendent. He’s an elite player and makes some pretty insane plays but he’s not out there putting up numbers that other guys in the leage current and in the past aren’t capable of. Is he even unanimously the best WR in today’s NFL? Have to imagine Julio and Antonio give him a run for his money. Transcendent to me is Sean Taylor. Or JJ Watt. Guys who redefine the position and make plays and do things on the field you never thought possible. Beckham certainly has some pretty crazy plays to his name, again, not saying he’s not a phenomenal player. But does he do it consistently enough or put up numbers this league has never seen before? Not in my opinion. Again, I don’t think many would argue that Beckham is a top 3 WR or Trent is a top 3 LT. So I’ll look to positional importance when selecting between the two. Trent has some pretty crazy footage out there himself, but he’s a LT and no one finds his highlights to be entertaining or what sells. 

 

 

14 hours ago, Skinsinparadise said:

To the point about him being a dude who just knows who to put the their team in position to win -- plenty of KC fans, media don't seem to dub Alex as that guy.  They deem him as a system QB, load him up with weapons and he will distribute the ball to them. And do that part well -- good QB but not the type who will out duel the great ones in big spots.  I recall reading an article about how Alex was deemed a choker in his first few seasons in KC, struggling in key spots and come back moments -- then the season after he had if I recall 2-3 big come back games and the quote was something like unprecedented for Alex to play that way in big moments.

 

As I've said before the Alex and Kirk critics are almost word for word on the same page about both.  Need supporting cast.  Up and down in big spots.  Up and down in the red zone.

 

I personally think the criticisms of both Kirk and Alex are over the top and you can find plenty of examples to refute them.   Alex was arguably at his career peak at the beginning of last season.  I see the argument for Alex is he's developing as a QB and we haven't seen the best of him yet -- all that experience is coming home to roost.   Personally, I got no idea one way or another.  But I think he's good enough to take them to the playoffs but he like any QB needs some good players around him.  If I think Alex had the offense we had last year with those injuries, we'd have been in the playoffs?  Nope.   But if Guice is a stud.  Reed is healthy.  Doctson/Richardson play well, O line stay healthy -- I can see 10-6. 

 

 

 

 

 

What I am saying is that potentially what they are saying is not painting an accurate picture of Alex. I’m not even saying that is definitely the case, it’s just something that came to mind being from DC and hearing all of the chatter about shipping Ovi off. Choker, can’t win the big one, doesn’t lay it all on the line, etc. Again, Ovi is a generational talent and HOF so not comparing pedigrees or how good relative to their sport they are. Just pointing out that what the KC guys say might be overly harsh out of frustration of playing well in the regular season 5 straight years only to never make it anywhere in the post season. And just to reiterate , we don’t disagree on overall take of Alex. He’s good, not great. Not many are though. It was just something that occurred to me. Could be way off base.

 

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On 6/22/2018 at 10:57 AM, Voice_of_Reason said:

I would have kept McVay in a heartbeat.  And I said as much before he even took the Rams job, and then did a great job.  I was roundly scolded for it.  

 

That said, this thread is about evaluation criteria for 2018 for Jay.  I think with the improvements at WR, RB and DL, we should expect him to be able prepare the team well for the start of the season, and have a more consistent running game.

Thing is, even several great OCs have failed as head coaches (Turner is a great example we know intimately).  The Rams must do it again before you can actually puff up your chest on this one.  McVay took over a  more talented team at RB and QB.  McVay went into a division where the main competition (the Hawks and Cards) were both on the downside while the 49ers were in a rebuild mode.

 

Here, he would have been facing two very good teams (the Eagles and the Cowboys) and another that can still bite hard.  He would not have a top RB like Gurley (although Matt Jones would have been solid if not for his ball handling issues).  While Cousins is no slouch, McVay did have a receiving combo that included guys like Garcon, Jackson, Crowder, Reed (Davis for the 6 or so games where Reed was at least partially unavailable). We also need to consider the support he'd have around him. There is a lot of evidence that indicates that saying our FOs main issue is because it is dysfunctional. In 2016 and 2015, a couple of losses could be laid primarily at the offenses feet (although defensive fail didn't help). Finally, firing a head coach after a winning season (albeit, a very mediocre one that was worse than the previous one) has almost never had good results (that is not to say it won't happen).

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On 6/22/2018 at 10:57 AM, Voice_of_Reason said:

I would have kept McVay in a heartbeat.  And I said as much before he even took the Rams job, and then did a great job.  I was roundly scolded for it.  

 

 

I understand that mindset but you have to realize that there's really no way that would have been feasible. As modest as the success was, the timing of losing McVay came right on the heels of the Redskins being about 35 yards and a Cousins choke-throw from back-to-back playoff berths. There's no one in the world who would have fired Gruden to promote McVay after that. 

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On 6/25/2018 at 11:53 AM, Darth Tater said:

Thing is, even several great OCs have failed as head coaches (Turner is a great example we know intimately).  The Rams must do it again before you can actually puff up your chest on this one.  McVay took over a  more talented team at RB and QB.  McVay went into a division where the main competition (the Hawks and Cards) were both on the downside while the 49ers were in a rebuild mode.

True, but to me it just felt that McVay had the "it" factor I'm not sure Gruden has.  We'll see.  This year is going to be very telling.  I laid out in the OP what I'm evaluating Gruden on in 2018.  Quick start, running game, no duds, no big blown leads are the highlights.  If he fails to be able to prepare this team to do those thing in year 5, you gotta think he's tapped out.  

 

On 6/25/2018 at 12:30 PM, TD_washingtonredskins said:

 

I understand that mindset but you have to realize that there's really no way that would have been feasible. As modest as the success was, the timing of losing McVay came right on the heels of the Redskins being about 35 yards and a Cousins choke-throw from back-to-back playoff berths. There's no one in the world who would have fired Gruden to promote McVay after that. 

You could look at it the other way: the team looked horribly un-prepared as a whole, and had numerous bad losses down the stretch.  They went 2-4 in the final 6, They had bad losses against the Cardinals, Panthers and Giants in a "Win and in" game. Earlier in the year they had a bad loss against the Lions and a bad tie against the Bengals. 

 

I actually think it would have been feasible to "promote" Jay to a FO job temporarily and promote McVay so he didn't leave the building.  Any which way you cut it, Jay's about middle of the pack, so far, as a HC, and you could see that McVay had a quality about him where he might be special.  

 

Regardless, the team didn't do it, and here we are, with Gruden leading the 2018 team on a critical season for him.  While I laid out a number of criteria for evaluation, I can't imagine Dan's going to have anything but playoffs as a criteria at this point.  He's been supremely patient, and that's not going to last forever.  

 

 

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15 hours ago, Voice_of_Reason said:

You could look at it the other way: the team looked horribly un-prepared as a whole, and had numerous bad losses down the stretch.  They went 2-4 in the final 6, They had bad losses against the Cardinals, Panthers and Giants in a "Win and in" game. Earlier in the year they had a bad loss against the Lions and a bad tie against the Bengals. 

 

I actually think it would have been feasible to "promote" Jay to a FO job temporarily and promote McVay so he didn't leave the building.  Any which way you cut it, Jay's about middle of the pack, so far, as a HC, and you could see that McVay had a quality about him where he might be special.  

 

Regardless, the team didn't do it, and here we are, with Gruden leading the 2018 team on a critical season for him.  While I laid out a number of criteria for evaluation, I can't imagine Dan's going to have anything but playoffs as a criteria at this point.  He's been supremely patient, and that's not going to last forever.  

 

 

 

Certainly it wasn't a perfect year. I just think it would have been a huge stretch to replace the head coach who had just gone 17-15-1 over two seasons here when that hadn't happened in two decades. It probably would have been the right move in hindsight, but I definitely don't think too many teams would have made that type of move. 

 

As for those ugly 4-5 losses and ties, we could point to examples of how those weren't necessarily mismanaged, but lost by players (missed FGs, bad defense down the stretch, critical physical mistakes, etc.). Anyway, your point isn't lost on me, I just think replacing a guy who seemed to be trending up in the moment would have been a huge stretch. 

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I think Gruden is going to have to have a very productive preseason, to meet ES fans lofty expectations of him --especially the fast start out the gate, and playoff/10+ win season vs. a very tough schedule and tough conference.

 

I'll grant he's got a deeper roster, but still with a lot of questions -- LG, a running game and DB replacements that'll  need to step up. The WRs haven't yet emerged as durable, reliable receiving threats. There's a large number of key players returning from extensive injuries, and uncertainty at TE, if Reed goes down again.  Most of all, QB Smith (although a skilled vet) will still be working to obtain a solid working comfort with the tendencies of his teammates, as well an ingrained automatic familiarity with the Gruden game-plays.  How well will the team-chemistry have gelled by Game 1 of the regular season?

 

I'll grant that Gruden still needs to improve some of his play scheme management during crunch-time. But I also think he's got the team (and coaching staff) on the right track.  I wouldn't blow up the team if they wind up going 8-8 this season. ... But, I suspect Snyder might. ?

 

 

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On 6/23/2018 at 12:00 AM, Rdskns2000 said:

Nothing has changed. There's only one thing Jay will ultimately be judged on and that's his final overall record.

If he can't win at least 8 games, then his tenure here is over.  How he gets to at least 8 wins is up to him.  If he

can't do that; it's over for him.

He needs to make the playoffs or he should be fired. This roster is good enough to win 10 games. Coach up these WR's and get the running game going with improved play calling. Watching Doug Pederson call plays for the Eagles has set the bar for Gruden....no more excuses, playoffs or bust for him. 

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  • 1 month later...
On 6/23/2018 at 7:29 PM, OVCChairman said:

The second, I can't keep seeing the mental breakdowns within the games.  Clock management, questionable playcalling, and watching these guys seemingly quit at times.  I can't watch us run weak side into the teeth of the defense with a 14 pt lead when we need 1 yard when half your starting O-line is hurt.  I don't want us to 'run the ball' to say we did it.  We need to do it, and try to be effective when doing so. 

 

He's a likable coach and guys get along with him, but he's not successful for all those reasons. 

 

 

 

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On ‎6‎/‎23‎/‎2018 at 7:29 AM, OVCChairman said:

 

 

The second, I can't keep seeing the mental breakdowns within the games.  Clock management, questionable playcalling, and watching these guys seemingly quit at times.  I can't watch us run weak side into the teeth of the defense with a 14 pt lead when we need 1 yard when half your starting O-line is hurt.  I don't want us to 'run the ball' to say we did it.  We need to do it, and try to be effective when doing so.  

 

Jay is a better than average play designer and caller... My concerns is not the plays he's calling, but when he's calling them.  The offense works, it just seems like we can't get out of our own way at times.   

 

 This is my gripe about him.

In crucial situations, no-huddle in effect, needing a score, and at times he had the " deer in the headlights" expression on his face, caught up in the moment of a big play, whether good or bad. He has to have the next plays before the previous one happens, one if it works and one if it doesn't.  That hypnotic look on his face tells a lot, and he absolutely MUST break this bad habit, or this team will be looking at another sub-par season, and more than likely his final season here.

 

The whispers are light right now, but if Gruden struggles this year, there will be calls for his job, and big brother curling his fingers at him to head west.

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1 hour ago, skins island connection said:

 

 This is my gripe about him.

In crucial situations, no-huddle in effect, needing a score, and at times he had the " deer in the headlights" expression on his face, caught up in the moment of a big play, whether good or bad. He has to have the next plays before the previous one happens, one if it works and one if it doesn't.  That hypnotic look on his face tells a lot, and he absolutely MUST break this bad habit, or this team will be looking at another sub-par season, and more than likely his final season here.

 

The whispers are light right now, but if Gruden struggles this year, there will be calls for his job, and big brother curling his fingers at him to head west.

 

 

I actually think Smith is going to make a big difference in this for this season.  My biggest concern with this team has been on-field leadership, especially on the offensive side of the ball.  Jay is not a publicly fiery guy... at least not from what I've seen.  That is ok, if you have a player in the locker room that can be a leader.  A guy who can make those split second decisions on the field.  All of those things I pointed out... Smith can fix in the moment.  He can control clock management.  He SHOULD be able to audible at the line.  He can run a 2 minute drill.  Gruden is ALWAYS going to need an above average cerebral QB in order to be effective.  It's just his coaching style.  I heard that Kirk was calling audibles to get OUT of run plays last year.  I had no idea, but that can't happen.  We need to run the ball with a purpose... If Kirk was doing that, it changes the way Jay calls a game.  We may run an off tackle play in the 1st quarter, to set up a play action in the 3rd... if we change out of that play in the 1st, the play action MAY not be as effective in the 3rd.  

 

The whole point of that is I think Smith will offset quite a bit of the deficiencies that I pointed out in my original post... but the leash is not super long with Gruden, especially now.  I almost want to give him a pass because I feel like Kirk indirectly held him back a little bit.  IF Kirk was being cautious and looking for the check down.  IF he was checking OUT of run plays.  I also feel Kirk has a bit to do with the clock management and head scratcher plays like taking a knee instead of spiking the ball.  Like NOT checking out of THAT run play vs N.O. when the matchup was not favorable.  Game management falls on the coach... but I think Smith can help.  

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