- Happy Victory Monday, y’all—hold on a second, being told that the Redskins didn’t actually win this past weekend, despite the absence of any loss this weekend. It feels good though...so I’m going with it. Not much to cheer about on most Mondays in the regular season this year has left me scrambling to find the positive, and Week 10 in the league had some positives for Redskins fans indeed. Sure, not losing is huge, but I think the break was good for everyone, and I know I feel pretty excited to watch a Redskins team after the bye week that has a chance to notch its second win of the season. As you all know, I don’t root for higher draft picks. I root for wins. Always. Rooting for losses is...well...it’s a loser’s mentality (I mean, it’s right in the name of what you are rooting for...). The Redskins are favored at home against the Jets. Win or lose, the Skins will be drafting nice and high in the draft next season, and I would like to see some of our younger players taste more than just one win this year. Besides, as long as Bruce Allen is in charge, I am never going to put myself in a position where I am actively rooting for something that depends on him making a good decision. And not for nothing, but Victory Mondays are always a treat. In addition to all that, we will get our first week of having Dwayne Haskins, Derrius Guice and Terry McLaurin all getting significant time together!
- It wasn’t all unicorns and rainbows though, was it? We were treated to the latest in the Trent Williams saga. How about we just cut to the chase here—I believe and stand by Trent on this. I am baffled that based on the information out there over the last six or seven months, there are people willing to suggest that the Redskins are handling this thing appropriately. As much as we might think we have known about Trent’s side of things, the Redskins dirty laundry has been blowing in the wind for quite some time. It seems odd that people would feel like the Redskins deserve even a shred of benefit of the doubt, but I suppose folks are entitled to their opinions.
- How about ol’ Kirky getting a primetime win? He didn’t play particularly amazing ball, but he didn’t throw any picks and he allowed for that defense to win the game by holding Ezekiel Elliott to 2.4 yards per carry. I think a bright spot for Redskins fans this season has been coming to understand how keeping Kirk Cousins would likely have made zero difference in our ability to get this franchise into regular contention. Sure, it would have offered stability at an important position, but his Vikings contract has been derided as one of the worst free agent deals in recent history (which would of course change if the Vikings win it all). I think the Redskins defensive talent is as good in some places as Minnesota, but they are better coached on that side of the ball, and their ground game is sick. We don’t have a Dalvin Cook in our backfield right now. Count me as someone who is breathing a bit of a sigh of relief that the failure to keep Kirk Cousins hasn’t hurt us as bad as I thought it would. Instead of us arguing about how mediocre Kirk Cousins is as a franchise quarterback, we get to debate the merits of a comeback by a one-legged quarterback and how that may or may not cause issues with the development of the rookie we just drafted. In terms of which scenario I would have preferred, I guess I would take the #8 car there, but really, we aren’t talking about a major difference in outcomes.
- I can’t believe I was able to contain myself for three points before talking Jeff Bezos. The whole #SnyderHasToGo thing has always felt like a bit of a longshot because Dan has to be willing to sell the team first for anything to be possible. I think he LOVES being the owner of the Redskins, which makes the idea of him selling hard to fathom. The other side of the coin is of course who we would be lucky enough to get as our next owner. I would prefer to take the job on myself, but Scott was only willing to loan me about $15 (and not all at once), which left me just a little shy of the $3-4 billion or more it will take to exorcise Dan Snyder from the building.
- Quickly, my plan would be: get the city to buy into the team for an equity stake at the value of the city’s contribution to a new stadium. If it requires changing the team’s name, at this point, I am not fighting that fight. Change the name and move forward with a public/private model that the district can participate in. I would demolish Redskins Park in Ashburn and find a new place somewhere near the city line (on any of the four sides of the city) and build a facility that resembles what Ted Leonsis has done with his St. Elizabeths East Entertainment and Sports Arena where the Mystics and Go-Go play their home games. My first call would be to Louis Riddick to try and hire him as our general manager. I would ask Sweet Lou to find me a CEO head coach who can command the locker room and digest real-time information from his coaching staff to be decisive on the sidelines during games. I don’t want a play-caller head coach. I want a leader first, second and third. I would ask Lou if there is any way he could talk Tony Dungy into taking the job. If so, I would ask Lou and Tony to lead a search for coordinators and a staff that they would have confidence in leading a young squad. I would build a front office staff by politely asking for permission to interview folks from places like New England, Pittsburgh and Green Bay. I would suggest (openly) that we should focus less on acting like the smartest guys on the planet and instead study what has actually been working in the league—and I would start by trying to emulate some of that (shocking...I know). I would call in the veterans of this team and I would tell them straight-up, “We are rebuilding.” Our preference would be to move valuable veterans (and anything else of value, including Dwayne Haskins) to gather resources, but if a guy like Ryan Kerrigan said he wanted to finish out his career in Washington, I would say, “Ryan, we will make that work somehow.” I am sure people would be surprised to know I would phase out the cheerleader program, but you better believe the band would get a shot in the arm (either JYB or BYB or both would get calls from me to get them involved in that endeavor). I would shrink the size of a new stadium by a LOT to try and right-size it to a more intimate fan experience that would be reliably packed by hometeam fans. I would personally knock on the door of season ticket holders who have left after decades to bring them back before seeing seats go to ticket brokers on the secondary market. I would measure success as an NFL owner in wins and losses on the field. But I really haven’t given it much thought.
- Jeff Bezos is a somewhat polarizing guy in this insanely polarizing era we live in, but one thing he has shown a willingness to do as a businessman is empower smart people who know more than he does about specific areas of different businesses. I am willing to bet he wouldn’t be telling his general manager who to draft or sign. I would also be willing to bet that his general manager will be held accountable for success on and off the field and the “off the field” part of that would be defined VERY differently than the way Bruce Allen defines it. The mere idea that Jeff Bezos—a man who has the means to pull this off—is interested in buying an NFL team is tantalizing beyond words for this Redskins fan. It has me excited about possibilities. Just the mere thought that our burgundy and gold path has a chance to deviate from its current trajectory is enough to get me floating around on a Monday morning after a non-loss weekend for my Redskins! Baby steps, y’all!
Fresh off a bye week, the Redskins look ahead to a game in which they are—gasp—favored.