Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Dear Mr. Snyder

First up, thanks for another interesting and entertaining game. At the risk of repeating myself, this is definitely BETTER, more competitive and much more fun than last year’s 4-12 CLUNKER of a season.

Now, let the COMPLAINING begin.

First off, we now FULLY understand why folks in Denver and in Philly either love or hate Mike Shanahan and Donovan McNabb. We also FULLY understand how some of those folks might both love and hate them during the SAME GAME!

McNabb is such a SIGNIFICANT upgrade over Jason Campbell it feels dirty to complain. McNabb is big, strong, smart and mobile. What he isn’t is ACCURATE. This is particularly noticeable when 300 lbs. defensive tackles are HANGING off his arms. So, that’s not really his fault. However, he has to get some of the HEAT, along with Coach Dad’s kid Coach Kyle,  for some bad play-calling-executing-decision making on fourth downs.

Both last week and this week, the Redskins faced fourth down and short and fourth and ten – both times they threw the ball 40 YARD in the air. Incomplete. It’s a matter of statistical probability. We will assume that Coach Kyle called the plays, but McNabb has to look off the improbable completion in favor of the FIRST DOWN. Now Coach Shan defended this trend this week with the old cliché “you TAKE what the defense gives you.”

Really? Never mind the Packers, but the Colts play the Tampa two deep defense which seals off deep routes and allows lots of completions UNDERNEATH. Surely, they switched it up on fourth and ten, but the Skins have enough weapons to make that play and keep possession (they only needed a field goal to tie) as opposed to going for the home run big play. Incomplete. GAME OVER.

The other – and, YES, this is really NIT PICKING, was an important third and one in the second half. Coach Kyle gets all the BLAME on this one. Sweep pitch to Ryan Torain. Really? A sweep pitch against a speed defense you’ve been running all over inside. Most NFL games are decided by a few plays. You can’t GIVE UP a critical possession with a dumb call. You CAN’T. Torain runs over people, let him do his THING. Don’t try to outrun a pro-Bowl DEFENSIVE END and Olympic sprinting Linebackers. Bad call. Dumb call. ZORN-ESQUE call, to put a fine point on it. Punt.

Which brings us to the defense and a lot of folks are UNHAPPY, but I’m not one of them. Yeah, Jim Haslett’s defenses are WEIRD and the thought that you might outsmart Peyton Manning was a DUMB one. Every time the Skins threw some wacky formation at the Colt’s star QB he figured a way to exploit it (see Joseph Addai's LONGEST run of his NFL life when Manning noticed that there were only two Redskins on that SIDE of the field.) YEAH that’s IT, we’ll OUTSMART Peyton Manning…Well...NO!

They are in LAST place in terms of yardage allowed, but they hit HARD and create TURNOVERS and that gives any team a CHANCE to win games. Lord knows, if they could CATCH…but…alas…they CAN’T.

That brings us to Coach Shan and Albert Hayensworth and how sitting back and letting your football people make all the personnel decisions this year must really SUCK. For once, you would have earned a STANDING OVATION at Fed Ex Field if you had pulled a Jerry Jones and called down to the coach and screamed SUIT UP FAT ALBERT and put him in the DAMN GAME!

Shanahan was obviously piqued that Hayensworth LALLYGAGGED on the way home from attending his half-brother’s funeral and he claims all the defensive scheming and game planning was complete…

Hey, we know Haslett’s schemes are WEIRD, but when you are playing nickel and dime packages the majority of the game you aren’t gonna CONVINCE anybody that you can’t use another PASS RUSHER.  Manning gets sacked ONCE and throws for 400+ yards and you don't NEED Haynesworth?  A PASS RUSHER? Seriously?

We have since heard local wags say part of the reason the Skins didn’t activate Hayensworth is that he DIDN’T work out (does he ever?) while he was away and that he wasn’t in good enough shape to get OFF the field during the Colt’s offensive no-huddle Blitzkrieg. That’s absurd. A 500 lbs. man in a wheelbarrow can get 25 yards to the sidelines in under ten seconds no matter how FAT or TIRED he is.

Deactivating Haynesworth was Shanahan being egotistical and stubborn and it hurt his team’s chances to WIN a game against what everybody perceived to be a SUPERIOR opponent. He’s made his point with Haynesworth, his team GETS IT, he doesn’t need to reinforce it with a unit that is LAST in the NFL…LAST. (We paid $40 million for you, but you can’t help the WORST defense in the NFL…Huh?)

Oh well, on to Chicago where the Skins defense will show marked IMPROVEMENT while INTERCEPTING Jay Cutler FIVE times…Hey, miracles DO HAPPEN.


Your Loyal Fan

P.S. In fairness we compliment Mike Sellers on some more nifty plays – CATCHES, runs and blocks. Apparently his “Hands of Stone” have either softened up or migrated back to Carlos Rogers’ house where they BELONG.

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