Monday, January 14, 2002

Schotty...we barely new ye...

Well, that was quick.

Under 15 months and the Skins have had FOUR--count 'em--FOUR coaches. Norv "Dimples" Turner, Terry "Scapegoat" Robiske, Marty "Forward Pass" Schottenheimer, and now Washington welcomes Mr. Steve "Steel" Spurrier. Sigh.

Those of you who've read my little columns this year know that I haven't exactly been a Schottenheimer Era supporter. I think Marty and his band of merrier coaches came into D.C. and messed up a program that needed only minor tweaking. They completely overhauled the Skins, removing 30 players and practically demoting veterans like Green and Smith. Carrier? Gone. James Thrash? Larry Centers? Ray Rhodes, Deion and our 4th-ranked defense slid out the back before Marty got in sniffing distance of the Skins. Rather than picking up a ball-control QB like Dilfer, Brad Johnson got the axe for Jeff George, who was promptly canned before the bye week. Enter Banks who didn't know the playbook until, oh, the seventh week. And Stephen Davis? Marty didn't realize Redskins-style football until it was much too late in the season. Against the Bears, with the season on the line, and the ball at the 3, we ran Stephen Davis one time.

So while I applaud Marty's ability to get in the players' good graces haflway through the season and make a record-breaking salvage of the year, I gotta say I haven't been impressed. Marty wanted full control, and with it the Skins were, in the end, mediocre.

...but we had potential for the 2002 season. Just like after Norv/Robiske's departure, there was room for tweaking. That's tweaking, not complete rebuilding. Spurrier's style of football is Superman to Marty's Bizarro, and how the players are going to respond is anybody's guess. Who the players will be is anybody's guess.

All this confusion is courtesy "Richie Rich," known to the rest of you all as Daniel Snyder. I haven't said it before, but I'm saying it here and now: he is a horrible, horrible owner. Call him snobbish, childish, whatever. His worst quality is his impatience. You canNOT create a contender in one season with different leadership. He's failed to learn this. Darrell "Ageless Wonder" Green stated how comraderie is built: look at Baltimore and St. Louis. How bad were the Rams before they got it together? Same for the Buccaneers. Give it time, Danny, give it time! Sheesh.

We'll just have to see.

In other news, Baltimore has got that Super Bowl Swagger back. Have you read the press today about yesterday's game? Ooh, the Ravens can talk smack. They're backing it up, so everybody in the AFC needs to be on alert. I think they're the team to beat on that side, while the Rams are the giants of the NFC. Their game vs. the Packers should be Super Bowl-quality. Come to think of it, this coming weekend has two Super Bowls. God bless the NFL!

Mr. Jones