Monday, November 1, 2010

I just don't get it...

*Post Caveat: I've never played football. I've only watched from the comfort of my couch, and a few times from a stadium seat. But I like to think I know a little about it.*

This is getting ridiculous.

When it was first announced that Mike Shanahan was going to replace Jim Zorn as head coach for the Washington Redskins, I was relieved. Finally, a coach with some experience and a history of winning and success. Sure, we had Joe Gibbs a few years back, but it wasn't the same as the glory days of the 80's.

But I'm beginning to have some doubts. The way he handled the last 2 minutes of the game this weekend against the Lions was terrible. Deciding to bench Donovan McNabb in favor of Rex Grossman, a quarterback who has only played in 1 NFL regular-season game since November 2008, was inexcusable. But Shanahan had his excuses. A few of them, actually.

First, it was explained that Shanahan thought Grossman was better prepared to run the 2 minute offense. If this was actually the case, why haven't they put Grossman in during previous games for the 2 minute offense?

Second, it was said that he thought McNabb's "cardiovascular endurance" wasn't where it should be to run the offense effectively, and some nagging hamstring injuries would hamper him. But his hamstring injury didn't seem to be that big of an issue on his long run that set up the first Redskins' score. Shanahan also had plenty excuses for Grossman's fumble that led to the Lions' last touchdown ("We weren't counting on pressure coming up the middle"....because that wasn't happening all day?).

Given McNabb's experience and ability, I'm baffled as to the real reason of this decision. He's been playing football for most of his life. He knows what to do. A couple of out-patterns, a few ball spikes. Standard procedures for going the length of the field with no timeouts. Unfortunately, he's become the scapegoat (yet again). Yes, some of his passes have been off the mark and his completion percentage is about 8-10 points lower than I'd like it. But our offensive line is awful. And our receiving corps are probably bottom 5 in the league.

Doing what Shanahan did, and not actually giving the truth behind it, not only alienates fans, but the players too. It also stirs up controversy that didn't need to be stirred. We've had enough waffling between quarterbacks for too many years now.

Hopefully this is just a minor bump on a long, successful road.


Mark B said...

Yeah I agree with you Matt- they could of gone into the bye week just focusing on getting better and resting up, but now they gotta deal with the crap about why Shanahan decided to bench McNabb. Maybe having a bye week is going to be the best thing that could happen in this situation since all sides will have a chance to rest up and refocus for the remainder of the season

I don't get what Shanahan was trying to accomplish either. I mean yeah McNabb isn't the most greatest passer ever, but he can still throw some bombs here and there. Think of it this way, at least our team is 4-4 and not 1-6 like another certain overrated & overhyped team that was picked to play the Super Bowl this season in their home stadium LOL :D

Thanks for the posting, glad to have you on board here! :)

Fred said...


I couldn't agree more. I am under no circustances a Skins fan, but I like to think of myself as an educated, non-biased NFL fan. I call it like I see it, even if it means praising teams I hate. Ask Mark, he'll vouche for that.

I expected more from Shanahan. I mean, do you really expect people to take you seriously when you bench Donovan McNabb for Rex Grossman and claim it was becasue Rex gave you the best chance to win? Your new name is Lovie Shanahan, because he was the only coach who ever though Grossman was the best chance. Rex isn't your best option when you're winning 35-0 let alone for a 2 minute drill.

Rex Grossman gave us the best chance to win. WHAT?!? Seriously Mike?

Which leads me to my next point. I wish coaches would stop lying. You guys are human, we understand you make poor decisions. Stop making excuses. Be honest, McNabb was having a sub-par game, you felt putting in a different QB might spark the offense and it blew up in your face. Lesson learned. McNabb played 98% of the game without "hamstring problems", come on man. If Shanahan wants to be on the Skins sideline next year, I suggest Grossman only see the field from the sideline for the rest of the season. If McNabb goes down, you put in Colt Brennan.

The bottom line is, I have no clue what Shanny is thinking. He put Haynesworth in his place, which was necessary, but once he proved his point, he wouldn't give up on it. He made it his goal to embarrass Haynesworth just to "prove a point" and he is now trying to do it with McNabb. "I'm the boss...I know what's best at all times...every member of this team will jump when I say jump." Plenty of coaches are no non-sense with out being morons about it. Shanahan was a great coach. If he doesn't get his head on straight, people will begin to doubt that.