At the very end of September, the Commanders made a personnel move that caught my eye, adding a “Chief Communications Officer” focused on internal and external communications and handling “public affairs.” Initially, the “communications” title confused me a bit and I was wondering how this position meshed with Julie Donaldson’s role as Senior Vice President of Media and Content.
After a bit more discussion and reflection, I realized this position wasn’t focused on traditional efforts to communicate with the fans at all, but is instead essentially Tony Wyllie’s old position as Chief Propaganda Officer for the team.
Redskins PR rep Tony Wyllie on the media report that claimed a major rift between holdout Trent Williams and team president Bruce Allen and the tackle's desire not to p[ay for Washington again: "That report is 100 percent false."— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) July 28, 2019
Ah, those were the days. Tony Wyllie 2.0 is Jean Medina, a former communications executive for multiple energy companies, including Exelon, and “a prolific communicator who has successfully navigated high-profile crises.”
The Commanders have hired a chief communications officer to oversee “internal and external communications, football communications and public affairs.” pic.twitter.com/2YPZOXsonE— michael phillips (@michaelpRTD) September 29, 2022
That should have been the first sign that something was up, the fact that Jason Wright was calling in back-up. Jason has served ably as Dan Snyder’s “fireman,” to date, setting distracting brushfires, like the Sean Taylor debacle, to take heat off his employer, but the raging infernos brewing with both the congressional investigations and Mary Jo White reports coming to a head appear too much for even an experienced McKinsey man to handle.
And then something else strange happened. After keeping a very low profile in the wake of the widely underwhelming “Commanders” brand roll out in February, Dan Snyder, emerged from his self-imposed exile to international waters - aimed at stringing out the congressional investigation of his mismanagement of the team - to gladhand with Jerry Jones before Week 4 in Dallas.
Decked out in Cowboys’ colors, and with his wife and handler in tow, Dan chummed it up with his strongest advocate among the NFL owners, and head of the archrival Dallas Cowboys, who, over the past 23 years has a 33-14 record against Snyder’s Redskins/Football Team/Commanders. Jerry loves Dan.
This particular emergence from exile was notable for a couple of reasons. First, going to Dallas to kiss Jerry’s ring represents Dan trying to shore up his most powerful ally in the internal discussions with the league. It also sends the message, loud and clear, that Dan Snyder is here - he’s not on suspension, he hasn’t “stepped back” - he’s in the limelight and no longer hiding out on his yacht off the coast of Elba. He intends to be very involved.
Then, earlier today, the team sent a letter to the House committee investigating Snyder and the team, attempting to undermine the credibility of the investigation, and trying to cast doubt on several key witnesses, including former team president Bruce Allen, Jason Friedman, Melanie Coburn, Tiffani Johnston, and David Pauken
NEW: The Commanders' legal team has sent a 9-page letter to the House committee investigating the team, raising objections to the process and witnesses involved.https://t.co/p66xxhPQr6— michael phillips (@michaelpRTD) October 6, 2022
This appears to be a preemptive strike on the release of the committee’s findings, which could well be unveiled at any point now. Combined with the impending release of the report from the Mary Jo White investigation commissioned by the NFL, the dual reports could form a powerful one-two punch against the Snyders’ more than two-decade long stranglehold on one of the league’s worst run franchises.
Buckle up. The football in the nation’s capital may not be worth watching over the next couple of months, but the way the stars are aligning, the odds are improving that we could crush it off the field this fall.
Do you think Dan Snyder gets taken down in 2022?
This poll is closed
I’d say the odds are 50/50.