Monday, December 28, 2009

Game Recap: Skins Lose 17-0. Mr. Snyder, I Demand a Refund

This game sucked.
It sucked that the best part of the gameday experience is when I buy some submarine sandwiches and we have them and some beers out in the parking lot of FedEx. It sucked that I have to sit next to Cowboy fans and have to listen to some  Cowboy a-holes in my section trying to pick a fight with Skins fans and yet nobody on the FedEx staff does a damn thing.
You wonder why there are so many fights at FedEx......well, blame the ticket office and stub hub. The Redskins provide plenty of opportunities for opposing team fans to get tickets. Either via the team selling tickets to scalpers/ticket brokers or having Skins fans sell to anonymous buyers on Stub Hub, opposing team fans can easily make their way to watch their team play.
Add alcohol and egos to the mix and BAM!!! brawling for all.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas.....Friday Night Video Style!!!!!

'Tis the season for Christmas Carols and all the cheer, so what a way to celebrate the semi-occasional, semi-traditional Friday Night Videos of IIWII  during Christmas than with.......

wait for it.....

Christmas Songs!!!!

But not your ordinary Christmas, that would be boring.
So here's a few hard rocking and somewhat funny songs to get you through the day.

Me....I'm celebrating Christmas by going to see Sherlock Holmes.

Have a safe and happy Christmas/holiday.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

One Year Later.......

Yesterday was IIWIIs 1 year anniversary and we're still here.
It's been a crazy year and it's still hard to believe that I'm hanging around 221 posts later.
But here we are.

Thank You again for reading and I hope you've enjoyed the site.
There's a few new polls up so vote!!!!
Feel free to send any questions or comments/suggestions to the IIWII email

I do check it every once in awhile and it's nice to get emails from real people and not just scammers or fake emails asking me help people if I wire some of my money or that I've won the Irish lottery.

Or if I need to make it me it is what it is, perfectly fine.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Game Recap: Skins Lose Badly to G-Men

It's the 4th quarter and I pretty much stopped watching by halftime.
I was lucky to see Fred Davis score a TD but that's been about it. It's been a horrible, horrible game for Redskin fans. No offense. Either Campbell is getting creamed by the pass rush, or his passes are incomplete. The D is totally getting run over or smoked on passes. The Redskins look absolutely flat.

And this is the first game new GM Bruce Allen gets to evaluate the team.
I expect a great deal of players to not be back next season with this type of performance.
All of the good will for the coaches and a few players is eroding........

Ok, a quick Good, Bad and Ugly.

The Good
Me- For not going to the game tonight. I just wasn't interested in seeing the Giants beat us and watching the Skins play like mediocre jokes. It's easier to turn of the TV than having to drive home from FedEx. And that's what I did.

Mrs. SHD- SHD's significant other is in her fantasy football playoffs and had Fred Davis, Graham Gano and the Giants D. Davis has a TD. The Giants D has destroyed the Skins mostly, She should be making out well.

Vinny Cerrato- He doesn't have to bear witness or take the blame for this one. Lucky him. Great job on that O-line Vinny.

Fred Davis- So far 5 catches, 1 TD. Only bright spot so far.

The Bad
Jim Zorn- Team looks horrible on nationwide tv. Great job getting your team pumped up for this one. I seriously doubt any Redskin fan will suggest keeping Zorn another year after this debacle.

O-line- and just when I was about to say "maybe we should keep Levi Jones and Mike Williams as backups", we have this game. Be glad I'm not the GM. Almost every linemen right now on this team would be gone. I'd probably keep Dockery, Ed Williams, Rinehart, maybe Will Montgomery and the kid from the Eagles practice squad. That's about it.

Jason Campbell- his numbers aren't bad, but not great. He's been hit on every play and Collins had one deep ball look better than most of JC's passes. I expect the Campbell needs to go crowd to be out en mass tomorrow on the radio and the message boards.

The D- Can't stop anything. No pass rush and this was with 2-3 starting linemen injured. The D looked like they were in slo-mo with the exception of London Fletcher.

Danny Smith- I like the trick plays also, but after the Giants called a time out, don't you think you should have just kicked the FG?

The Ugly
-Bruce Allen has his work cut out for him. This will not be an easy fix of adding 1-2 players and bringing in a new coaching staff. This team will really need to rebuild and I hope the O-line is the first place they target in the rebuilding process.

-Jim Zorn can't play the Giants. The Skins will be 0-4 after tonight against the Giants. The Redskins will have lost 7 of the last 8 against the G-Men and Jason Campbell will be 0-7 against them. Remember the one win back in 2007 was with Todd Collins. Not good stats for either Campbell and Zorn who look like both may be gone at the end of the season.

- Silver lining: We fall to 4-10. We stay ahead of the Raiders, Bills, Seahawks and Bears. With Cleveland (3-11) on a winning streak (2), who knows maybe we'll have a better chance to go after Russel Okung.

Score Update: 45-12 Giants with 3:30 to go in the 4th.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Please Vote For London Fletcher!!!!!!!

This has been a pretty dreadful season despite the improvements in the last 4 weeks. However, there has been one Redskins player that again is having a phenomenal, yet quiet season.

London Fletcher.
Currently, he is third in the league in tackles (133) which is just crazy. It's close to 9 tackles a game. He's 15th in the league in solo tackles (76). He also has a INT and a FF.

Fletcher has been consistently been near the top of tacklers in the past decade and it would be hard to imagine what the Redskins D would look like without him (Let me just say, I doubt we'd be a top 10 defense). Yet, the man has never been elected to a Pro Bowl.

Not one.

It makes no sense. The guy is honestly a HOF candidate and yet he has never been to a pro bowl. What do you have to do to get some respect around the league? Dance every time you make a play, even if you barely touched the guy and your teammates made the tackle. Get in trouble with the law so that SNL makes fun of the situation.

I just don't get it. Don't get me wrong, Ray Lewis is a 1st ballot HOFer- but his numbers aren't that much different career-wise than Fletcher and yet, Lewis has been to 6 pro bowls and Fletcher has been to none.
Anyway, the point is go and vote for London over at
Here's the link to the actual ballot.

Also, while you're there may I suggest voting for Andre Carter and Brian Orakpo as well. 11 sacks each and have been just dominating.
Edit: And don't forget Hunter "the punter" Smith who ran for a TD and threw a TD this year. At one point, he was my team MVP.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

So Long Vinny, Welcome Mr. Allen

(Our First GM of Daniel Snyder's Ownership: Bruce Allen)

I really didn't think Snyder would do it......ever. Yet, Thursday morning my cell phone lit up and I was receiving calls from most of my friends about the resignation of Vinny Cerrato and the hiring of Bruce Allen. I have some thoughts on the hiring of Allen (great move in my opinion), but first let's say our farewells to Vinny.

Let's be honest, Vinny needed to go. I'm not going to sugar coat that now that he "resigned". Myself and others out there wore their "Fire Vinny" shirts for a reason. That said, Vinny did make some good moves during his tenure. Of course he made some really bad ones as well. I guess my point is that he wasn't a great officially unofficial GM, but he wasn't Matt Millen either. Primarily, he had to go because, can't fire the owner no matter how many shirts we wear that say "Sell the Team". We know that many of Vinny's decisions were really from the office of Daniel Snyder. If anything Vinny was the public face of the machinations of Snyder and Vinny did a terrible job of trying to explain to both the fans and the media why they did what they did.

When it comes down to it Vinny is the live action version of a fictional character that most people on the planet has seen at least a few times if they ever have watched TV.

Vinny Cerrato = Waylon Smithers

Both stand there and tell their boss what they want to hear. Both let their bosses make terrible mistakes and both until recently were still in their employ. It wouldn't have surprised me that when the crowd boos Cerrato was trying to say that the crowd was supporting the team or saying Smooooooot or Cooooooley, just like Smithers does here:

In the end, Vinny had to take the brunt of the blame and the fall for it. But hopefully, he'll go back to ESPN. He'll provide some humor which ESPN has lacked since they fired Emmitt Smith and will probably be less annoying than most of the expert blowhards that ESPN currently employs.

Now to our GM.
I think it was a great move because of Allen's experience and respect around the league. There has been writers like CBS's Pete Prisco who said the Skins should have gone with an up and coming young NFL executive.
Look, here's the deal. Allen worked with Al Davis, he's won in the league before with the Bucs and the Raiders. Snyder actually respects him and that's a key to any chance of this team being able to fix its problems. More or less, Mr. Snyder has to stay out of football operations. If he trusts Allen to do take over operations, then maybe, just maybe he stop going after every big name on the market.

And maybe we can finally draft a starting O-lineman.

Allen is also a great move because of of his family's history with the team. More or less it's great PR. But I also believe that Allen knows what this area is like when the Skins are winners and he wants to have them win again.

I also like how this was done to allow Allen three weeks of evaluation to determine who should stay and go as well to start getting his people in place to prepare for the draft..

No matter what, this is a victory. Hopefully, the Washington Redskins will finally develop a front office that can build a championship team eventually.

Now to figure out who will be our coach next year and what players will be back.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Major IIWII Announcement

With the 1 year anniversary of IIWII approaching,
I'd like to give all of the 5 or so readers of the site an early Christmas present.

I'm always trying to find ways to make the blog better. There will be some new polls coming up.
You'll still get some decent articles from yours truly and if I can find a new link or widget that's worth adding I'll do that also.

But here's the big news:

1. I'm expanding the writing pool. IIWII is proud to announce that starting in 2010, there will be a new writer to jump on board. I'll still be posting, but I'll also be the acting Editor in Chief (yay! New title.). I've mentioned SHD before in some of my gameday posts. And yes, Steeler Hater Dan will be the new writer at IIWII (my sincere apologies to Dagger and the Steeler fans over at Post Game Heroes).

More or less, Dan is a Ravens fan who follows the Skins. So while he doesn't follow them as closely as I do, he does know the team and the roster and will probably give you a better non-Redskins fan perspective. I'm also hoping that he'll be able to help me cover the entire NFL on the site instead of the constant "under the microscope" focus on the Skins that I have.

SHD will also do some fantasy football segments (he's winning his league, me I don't play) so hopefully we'll have some good stuff coming up. He also is a movie buff, so don't be surprised if you see the occasion movie debate with me and him. Dan has a few more ideas and we'll see how it works.

2. We will be attempting starting the first ever IIWII podcast, hopefully in late January early February. The idea is to do 1-2 podcasts a month in the off season,with emphasis on free agency and the draft. Once the season starts, we'd like to go weekly with episodes depending on our work schedules.

3. Open invitation to some of our fellow bloggers. We're looking to do an occasional round table with topics, but that's more or less to be determined based on interest and availability.

So there you have it. Hopefully IIWII will be even better in 2010.
Thanks for reading.

Game Recap: Skins Dominate Raiders 34-13

Finally the Redskins played four quarters and finished off a struggling team. It was nice to see the Redskins attack instead of just play for the field goal and hope the defense would hold. For another week, many of the same players who have stepped it up again showed their skills and have solidified or improved their status for the future. Also, a few players stepped up their games and played great as well.

Before I go to the Good, Bad and Ugly section, I just want to talk about the Raiders. They played sloppy, both teams did really. But I will say that with Gradkowski in there, this team is pretty dangerous. They have a good run game, a good TE in Miller and a young WR corp. Their defense pummeled Jason Campbell with blitzes. Don't let the final score fool you, It was 17-10 Skins before Gradkowski went down with an injury. Based on the play of the Skins, I still think they win but it would have been much closer. Thanks JaMarcus Russel. He is just bad......and that's saying it nicely.

Redskin fans have been split on Jason Campbell. I know I have been. You see flashes of greatness mixed with inconsistency and as a fan you wonder if Campbell really is "the guy" or not. But one thing no one could ever question is his work ethic. The guy busts his ass. We know this. We know he does his workouts in the offseason (more on this later). We know he is generally one of the first players at practice and one of the last players to leave. We know he spends a great deal of time studying film and working with his receivers to get better with them. There are other QBs who are more talented, more fluid passers but not nearly as many that work as hard as Campbell (and gets so much abuse also). That's the difference between Campbell and Russel. Russel doesn't get what he needs to do to make it in the NFL. Campbell does. One day Campbell will see his hard work pay off even if it isn't in a Redskins jersey.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Game Recap: Skins lose 33-30, we are Snakebitten

I swear this team is cursed.
Only the Redskins could blow a 17-10 lead at halftime this way. The D holds the Saints and forces them to punt. Yet, at that moment the Saints punter shanks a ball that would have been decent field position with the typical fair catch from Randle-El. Only instead the ball bounces off the head/body of Kevin Barnes and is recovered by the Saints. Later, on the same drive, the Skins Kareem Moore picks off Drew Brees only to have the ball pulled out of his hands and ran back for a touchdown.

Hollywood can't write this ****.

Monday, December 7, 2009


To the readers of IIWII,
This past month has been lousy in my number of posts (nine) on IIWII and right now December doesn't look like it's going to be much better (this is the first and we're already at Dec. 7th).
I did this post just to say that IIWII isn't stopping, if anything it may be getting bigger and better in 2010, more on that later.

There are some reasons why I haven't been posting and I'll share them with you.
1. Writer's Block/ Redskins Apathy- Frankly, there's not much more you can say about the Skins that one hasn't already said. Cerrato needs to go. Probably Zorn as well, although you wonder the way this team has played that maybe he deserves one more year. Same with Campbell. Outside of that, it's been hard to talk about football.

2. Holidays- When I have some extra days off, I try to get some things done around the house and outside. For example, I had some trees fall down around my house and needed to get the old chainsaw out and take care of it Bruce Campbell Evil Dead style. Groovy!

(My Hand is just fine by the way....still have all my limbs)

3. Work- While my real job doesn't deal with the holidays per se, we get hit when we're closed before and after said holiday. When you get home, you feel like you've been hit by a truck. You don't feel like writing much when you have days that make you feel that way.

4. Firefox- I like to use Firefox as my browser. The newest version sucks. Sucks royal. You have to click on a link and then click it again to load. It's loading very slowly and half the time I have to hit re-load again. Does not do well with You Tube videos either.......

There's other reasons, but that's plenty. I expect on working on some other things this week like the heartbreaking loss to the Saints in OT.

Don't worry, I haven't gone anywhere and check out I usually make a post or two there everyday.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

Always a nice day to eat lots of food and watch football.
I'm battling a headache (sinuses/rough day at work yesterday/eye strain) but hopefully I'll have some time to put up some articles during the holiday.

While I'm at it, here's my picks for today:
Cowboys (although I'd love another Raiders upset)

Personally if Detroit won, it wouldn't hurt my feelings as I think they and the Redskins will be battling for draft position.

Enjoy the day!!!!!

"Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-times take twelve minutes. This is not coincidence."
-Erma Bombeck

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Game Recap: Skins lose 7-6. Moral Victory?

 (picture/sig. created by Extremeskins member rd421)
I don't believe in moral victories in the NFL. You don't win your division with moral victories. You don't make the playoffs with moral victories. You definitely don't win a Super Bowl with moral victories. Just ask the Eagles. However, there was a moral victory in a sense today by the Washington Redskins team as they fought and nearly defeated the current NFCE leader the Dallas Cowboys.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thursday Night Pick: Miami at Carolina

I know the game has already started, but let me get in my pick.
I like the Panthers 23-17. Lots of running in this one.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Game Recap: Skins win 27-17 over Broncos

(original You Tube Video link here).
So those are the highlights from the game for the most part. The only play that isn't shown is the critical tackle made by Brian Orakpo on a scrambling/running Kyle Orton late in the 2nd quarter. While the tackle prevented Orton to have any chance to run for a touchdown, Orton's ankle was injured in the process. Enter Chris Simms. While Simms in the past has been a dangerous QB, he wasn't ready for this game and the Skins D were like sharks in the water when they smell blood.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


(Photo from Ned Dishman)
Just got home from the game.......
Got to say this has been one of the most entertaining games I have seen in years.........the crowd was awesome and the only thing I really feel bad about is that for some reason the game didn't record on my DVR.
So I'm hoping NFL Network will replay this game this week.........

Game recap is coming, more tonight and tomorrow.

Hail to the Redskins!!!!!!!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Weekly Picks 11/15/2009

Weekly Picks has returned.........
Right now I'm 78-52 on the year in the BGO pick'em league. Which is only good for 26th place. But hey, "It Is What It Is"......heh.

Cue the music Mr. Conductor.

Draft 2010.....Why Not?

One of my favorite elements of playing ESPN 2K5 (or for most of you....Madden, which I'm not actually a fan of that video game series) was playing GM and drafting players, bettering my team. Which brings me to the one event except for the Raider fans where every fan can be excited about the future of their team.

Despite my anger that the NFL has decided to make Draft Day a three day prime time quagmire ( Round One on a Thursday night), I still enjoy debating where a player should go and what team needs what player. Even though week 10 has just started, why not jump into the 2010 class (I mean what do us Redskin, Lion, Chief, Buc, Bill, Raider and Brown fans have to do for the remainder of the season anyway?) now.

Here's some sites to get some early evaluations, mock drafts and analysis:

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Weekly Recap/ Game Recap Skins Fall to Falcons 31-17

I will talk about what's gone on the past week in a moment, but first the game.

I have never seen a team that takes almost a half to show up. This seems to continue to happen week after week and I'm not sure whether the Skins are poor at game preparation (and make good halftime adjustments) or the opposing teams just get lulled to sleep by their dominance and then have to come back late to prevent an upset. I had thought that it was just Jason Campbell, but I really think it's the entire team.

As much as this game was poorly executed and poorly played, I will say that there are some players who to quote Joe Gibbs "played their guts out"and fought hard to give the Skins a chance to come back. But the reality is that this is a really, really bad team with a few players who are talented but aren't enough to make this team a winner.

The defense made some major errors and some generally boneheaded plays. DeAngelo Hall still can't tackle. Albert Haynesworth jumped off-sides twice keeping a drive alive....... But I think he was possessed or something so I blame the demons, just look at the first few seconds of the video below (if that isn't somebody being possessed, I don't know what is).

And LaRon Landry still likes to make really, really stupid late hits for personal foul penalties (see below and notice the Haynesworth shove) and takes bad angles on plays.

Overall there is just a lack of execution and a lack of discipline on this team. Jim Zorn's tenure is starting to feel much like Norv Turner's time here. Little attention to detail, little attention to technique and detail and a great deal of frustration from the fans.

The mistakes and the lack of personnel to execute anything (ie offensive line giving up 5 sacks- I'm pointing the finger directly at you Mr. Cerrato!!!) are clear to me that this team is in shambles and not a few players will fix the problems. Really, the Redskins need to clean house. Much like what the Falcons had to do after Bobby Petrino/Mike Vick problems. The Skins need to change the attitude and culture of this team and try to build around the young players that will be here for the next 3-5 years.

Oh yeah, the Falcons have a great team. Michael Turner is a beast, Matt Ryan is a smart kid who is a real franchise QB and their defense is fast and tackles well. The scary thing is that the Skins almost came back. If I was a Falcons fan, I'd be glad they won and move on.

Ok. Good, Bad and Ugly time:

The Good

Brian Orakpo- 2 sacks (5.5 season). Not bad for a rookie. Even better for a player who is a natural DE and has been relegated to playing SLB with minimal snaps at DE. Orakpo right now is the only reason the 2009 draft hasn't been a complete and total bust. Orakpo may still have a legitimate shot at being DRotY.

Marko Mitchell- Finally activated and he didn't let the Mitchell Militia (c'mon Colt has the Cult of Colt and there are some rabid Marko Mitchell fans out there, he gets his own group as well) down as he caught 2 passes for 22 yards in his debut.

Shawn Suisham- 1/1 from 48 yards. 10/10 on the season and still continues to kick well.

Sam Paulescu- 3 punts: Long 53 yards, net avg. 46 yds. Not a bad fill in job for Hunter Smith and he seemed to hold the ball well for Suisham. Could Hunter the punter be replaced by Paulescu?

Jason Campbell- 15/22 for 196, 1TD, 1INT. Frankly this was a pretty good performance by Campbell. Maybe his best all season. The INT was on Fred Davis in my opinion (even though the ball was high). Campbell was sacked 5 times but kept playing and made some plays that I wasn't sure he would make (like the Yoder TD and finding Sellers for a huge gain). Campbell also ran for his life a few times (5 carries for 40 yards) to get a few first downs. I don't think Campbell will be back next year but I clearly don't hold him fully accountable for this team's struggles. If anything, Campbell nearly brought the Skins back today.

Ladell Betts- (15 carries, 70 yds. 1TD) Filled in well for an injured Clinton Portis. It's the first time since, well the start of the season where we saw a RB with some burst and fought for extra yards.

The Bad
Run Defense- (27 carries, 181 yards, 2TDs). Michael Turner just dominated as the Falcons ran at Andre Carter and made the most of it. Add poor tackling, taking poor angles and getting blocked, the Skins looked horrible.

O-line- Most of sacks came early (I believe 4 sacks by the middle of the 1st half) but in the end, they gave up 5 sacks total. The run game sputtered at times. This has to be the worst O-line in the league. There was one time when the Falcons only sent 3 players and......they still sacked Campbell.

Penalties- (10/88yds) Stupid penalties, just shows a lack of concentration. Plenty of holds and offsides. The one penalty where two Redskins were lined up in the neutral zone for a punt is just inexcusable (it also gave Atlanta a 1st down).

The Ugly
- I think Clinton Portis' career may be over. Prior to the concussion he wasn't looking good (4/4 yards). On the season he's averaging just under 4 yards a carry and has only 1 rushing TD. While the O-line has been horrible, Portis hasn't looked much better. I have to think CP will be out next week against the Broncos.

- LaRon Landry isn't getting any better. I remember that Sean Taylor also caused personal fouls and took bad angles early is his too short career. But by 2006, it seemed that Taylor had figured out how to take better angles, was a better student of the game and didn't cost his team 15 yards repeatedly for late hits. Three years into Landry's career, he's still making similar costly mistakes. Are the coaches not noticing this?

- Are the expensive free agents worth it? Dockery has been the little amount of stability on this team. He didn't cost the team that much and I don't remember many significant penalties coming from him. DeAngelo Hall has been really hit and miss. He's the only DB with an interception and leads the team with INTs (3). But his tackling is lousy and today was supposed to be his statement game.......we didn't see much. Haynesworth is a great edition, he's helped give Carter and Orakpo opportunities to make sacks with their skills. But I still wonder if the Skins would have been better if they had used that $100 million for a few O-linemen, a SLB and a couple of DTs.

- Dear Vinny,
Please don't ever, ever state again that Mike Williams was how you addressed our brittle O-line. That is not an upgrade or an improvement. You're actually making me think keeping a past his prime Jon Jansen would have been the better move. Oh and you're fired. You can't draft generally well and you can't address key positions when there are gaping holes.

Snyder's Apology and Riggo's "Dark Heart"

As you know by now Dan Snyder made some comments apologizing to the fans about the team and how disappointed he is by the team and the franchise's performance. I have mixed feelings on the comments, since from what I've read and seen on Redskin's Showtime was that Snyder only made the comments to a few reporters and didn't really field questions from those who was there.

I don't think Snyder handles the media well, but I do think the comments were sincere. I do believe that Snyder wants this team to win. Does he want to make money? Sure. If the Redskins was my team I'd like to make good money off of the Redskins fans. I mean he did spend $800 million to buy the team, you'd like to make that (and more) back. But I think Snyder does want to be a part of NFL history with his Redskin teams winning multiple Super Bowls.

The problem is that he doesn't know how to do it. Maybe he is willing to learn or he just thinks he's on the right track. I'm not sure. He has the wrong people around him to help. He also has burned a great deal of bridges over the 10 seasons he's owned the team and after the Zorn tenure/fiasco, he'll probably burn a few more. Snyder needs somebody whom he respects and will accept his authority to run the team. I just don't know if that man exists and he would want to come here. Actions speak louder than words Mr. Snyder, fix this team!!!

As for Riggo.......
I've always enjoyed the commentary of John Riggins. I really miss him on Redskins Report. Riggo was either the voice of reason to counter Sonny and George's blind homerism or he was the crotchety old guy that always saw the glass half-empty while telling kids to get off his lawn. This is the same guy who made the "Phoenix rise from the ashes" speech a few years ago. Now Riggo has been coming out lately going after various Redskin members from Portis to Zorn to Vinny to Snyder.

While many of the things Riggo has said I fully agree, I wonder what is the motive behind it. Is he trying to be the voice of reason again when there are only thousands of other fans/media/experts/former players/coaches etc. saying the same thing? Is he looking for a new job within the organization or with a media outlet? Or is he just throwing the team under the bus after his departure from ESPN 980? I mean Riggo did say he had an axe to grind. Either way it's just another part of this annoying soap opera that has gotten on my nerves. John, here's my suggestion: What do the Skins do to fix the problems? If in your opinion is no answer b/c things won't change until Snyder is gone, then there's really no need to have further weekly tirades about the Skins. We get it. The Skins suck. Next.

Notable Vinny Quote of the Week

"Criticize us as we're 2-5 in football, because we HAVE made some mistakes, and we admit that. And that's what we're working on correcting."
(Vinny on Inside the Red Zone via DC Sport's Bog)

Trust me. I have plenty of stuff to say about the many, many, many mistakes this team has made over the last few years (decades). I have no need to get personal about the owner or his staff.

My Bye Week is Over....Back to Blogging

I decided to kind of take a week off from IIWII, not really on purpose but b/c I frankly was busy and didn't feel like writing about the Skins or much else for that matter.

Anyway, there's plenty to write about the Skins. The game vs. the Falcons, the soap opera with the team and the future.

I'm going to do some separate articles on the blunders of the Redskins drafts and the lack of drafting talented O-linemen.

There may be a movie review soon of Paranormal Activity, if I get a chance to see it tomorrow.

A mid-season review of the rest of the NFL

And with sweeps taking place, a brief look at some of the shows I'm watching or have watched and what's looking good.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Update: I Shouldn't be Harassed at the Next Game for My Fire Vinny Shirt

From Matt Terl @ Redskins Blog:
However, your T-shirts are allowed as long as they don't feature profanity, and much of what reportedly went down Monday night with the confiscating of shirts should not have happened. Here's Donovan's direct quote to me:

"Our policy regarding messages on T-shirts and other clothing is simple: if it doesn't display profanity, it's fine," he said. "It's not our policy to regulate clothing based on the message it displays. We've heard the anecdotal reports that some stadium personnel were being over-zealous in their handling of this matter Monday night. We apologize to any fans who were inconvenienced as well as fans who were distressed by the reports, and we'll be working with all stadium employees to be certain that the policy is correctly enforced at future games at FedExField."

Ok, so here's the deal. I'll be wearing my Fire Vinny t-shirt (all it says is Fire Vinny, no profanity or obscene words) for the remainder of the games I attend this season. Skins are on the record. We'll see what happens.......

Skins fall 27-17 to Eagles....

We've learned one thing last night. Playcalling isn't the main issue with this team. It really comes down to lack of execution and lack of personnel. While the D generally played tough, they gave up two major big plays that resulted in TDs for DeSean Jackson. One was a blown containment by Andre Carter on a reverse and poor tackling by our corners and safety on the run down. The second, was a blown coverage by either Carlos Rogers or Chris Horton (or both). The Redskins only consistent weapon on offense went down with a broken ankle/foot (Chris Cooley) and this team just continues to find ways to shoot themselves in the foot with poor execution, penalties and turnovers.

I also wanted to talk about the Eagles for a moment. I'm not impressed, let's just say that about the Eagles. Their version of the Wildcat is ineffective, Mcnabb is about the same as ever: a good quarterback that can hurt you if you don't pressure him; if you pressure him, he throws ground balls. Westbrook is hurt (again). Their defense is solid and still crazy blitzing, but I think teams with a good O-line will be able to run on them. Also, a team with a quicker throwing QB will smoke them when they bring the house. If the Skins remove some of the serious blunders that they made, this game is much closer than the final score. With the exception of DeSean Jackson, nobody on either team really wowed me.

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The Good
Sherm Lewis/Sherm Smith- I know, I know. Same playbook, only 17 points scored..... but look at two stats that seem rather improved over the other games. The Skins actually won the time of possession and they were 2/3 in the Red Zone in scoring. And those two scores were TDs. Plus, I was dead wrong on blown timeouts and delay of penalties that I figured would occur.

Shawn Suisham- Made a 47 yard FG. Is 9/9 on the season. Nice kickoffs all season long.

Fred Davis- stepped into Chris Cooley's role and led the team in catches. Scored his first career TD. A good, let's work on that blocking.

Devin Thomas- 1st TD catch of his career. I've given the WR a great deal of flack lately, but both he and Moss were wide open many times last night.

Front Seven of the D- With exception to Andre Carter's blown containment, the D-line and the linebackers looked sharp. Kudos to Jeremy Jarmon and Albert Haynesworth who stood out with Carter and Alexander.

Reed Doughty- Nice sack on McNabb, always swarms to the ball.

The Bad
Jason Campbell- fumbled snaps, strip fumbled, threw a terrible INT for a TD off a deflection, when Campbell threw into the lane where the Eagles ran an overload blitz. Missed a great deal of open targets and looked tentative in the pocket. I have never seen a QB who regularly takes almost a half to get comfortable in the pocket. Sorry, JC I have been pulling for you but I don't think it will happen here. Wish you the best of luck in 2010.......maybe Oakland will be a better fit.

O-line- No run game. Campbell getting sacked 6 times. Rabach having poor snaps. We have the two worst starting tackles in the league. I can only hope Levi Jones will be ready for the Falcons game. At this point it can't get much worse.

Chris Horton and Carlos Rogers- What happened fellas? How do you let Jackson blow coverage like that?

Andre Carter- Overall had a great game, but 1 blown containment cost the Skins big.

Antwaan Randle-El- This play was the dagger as far as I'm concerned. It's bad enough that ARE isn't a punt returner anymore, but now he can't even fair catch the ball. At this point either Moss, Tryon, Hall or Thomas should be returning punts. Period.

Chris Cooley- bad hair, then breaks his ankle. The good news is that he may be back in 4-5 weeks. The bad news, he's still playing for a team that will probably be 2-8 (or worse) by then.

The Refs- It didn't affect the the game's outcome, but it was a lousy performance in a nationwide game. Pitiful. Lot's of missed calls. Calling penalties on one team and trying to access the penalty on the other team.....sheesh.

The Ugly
Despite the playcalling controversy this week, it didn't play much of a factor. I don't think Zorn would have done better, but I think he may have done slightly worse. Either way this team still lacks the personnel to do anything. And other players are making boneheaded mistakes or just waiting for this season to end. Zorn's not coaching them up........

Vinny has no clue- When asked publicly about the patchwork O-line, Vinny mentions that the line was addressed by adding Derrick Dockery and Mike Williams. Dockery was a good move, but Mike Williams ladies and gents? This was the guy that I thought should have been cut in training camp. Also, after knowing about Samuels and Thomas' injury history, why didn't the Skins prepare for them to be out at some point? They didn't and it shows.

Why Would Gruden Come Here? - Seriously. Unless they cleaned house, if I was Tom Cable I wouldn't come to coach this team. Gruden and Jaws had a field day making fun of the Skins on MNF. I don't blame them.

Don't You Have Better Things to do Mr. Snyder?- DC Sports Bog is reporting how security is harassing fans by throwing away and banning homemade signs and forcing fans to take off or turn inside-out t-shirts that are protesting the ownership and/or making fun of Snyder and Vinny (or the current situation- ie. BINGO shirts).
I'm not happy about this one bit. And yes, I will be wearing my Fire Vinny shirt for the Broncos game and beyond.

Let me make this clear, you have security there to protect fans, players, media and everybody from people that want to cause trouble......and I don't mean protesters wearing shirts. I expect security and the PGC police to do just that. If your focus in on if somebody has a Snyder Sucks t-shirt, then something is clearly wrong and I strongly suggest that your security's main focus should be safety. Plus, this only makes ownership look even more ridiculous to the rest of the world.

Hooray BYE week........

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Weekly Picks 10/26/2009

I'm a little late on this so again here's my list of winners this week:

Last Week: 9-5
Season: 57-33

Redskins Weekly Round Up

It has been an interesting week at Redskins Park. Interesting if you're a media person. Abysmal if you are a Redskins fan.

First, the injuries:
- Clinton Portis is still nicked up but is expected to start on Monday
- DeAngelo Hall has a sore knee
- Albert Haynesworth has a ankle issue
- Cornelius Griffin has a banged up elbow
All these guys should play on Monday.

Chris Samuels Done For The Year (Forever?)
With a stinger and a history of spinal stenosis, Chris Samuels looks like he'll be headed to the IR in order to prevent any further damage to his spine. It looks like this is it for #60, although neither Samuels or the team have officially said the dreaded R (retirement) word yet. It's a true shame that Samuels has only seen a few seasons of playoffs. He really has been the anchor for th O-line for the past few years and the only spot where the Redskins could regularly get yards when they ran the ball. You figure the amount of highly talented DEs he has had to face in his career and that only a few of them has really smoked him, showed the talent level Samuels has/had.
We'll miss you Chris. I just wish you could have played for better teams.

Roster Moves
Skins cut P Glenn Pakulak, RB Marcus Mason and RB Anthony Alridge
Skins re-sign Renaldo Wynn and sign LT Levi Jones and RB Quinton Ganther

Wynn being re-signed is no surprise, but if Hunter Smith still can't go, expect him to be cut again and Pakulak to be re-signed. Mason was a bit of a surprise but in the few times the Skins used him, he didn't do much (6 carries/19yds, 3.2 avg). Plus, he's not the best pass blocker and with this patchwork O-line, that's not going to work. Alridge is still one of those head cut him because he can't hold onto the ball. So when Randy Thomas is IRed, instead of bringing in a OG (Pete Kendall is still out there!!!!!!) you bring back Alridge? Then you never use him? It makes no sense especially when you wind up using your main back up RT as the RG (because either Chad Rinehart is injured or the coaches don't have confidence in him) and then have to bring in a 3rd string LT to replace an injured Chris Samuels (to block against Julius Peppers no less). The Skins still have back ups at other positions be the starters on the O-line (Will Montgomery will be the RG although he's also the #2 C behind Casey Rabach).

Levi Jones was a needed move, although his signing to me is just trying to put a band-aid (or duct tape, chewing gum.....add your own phrase) on a badly bleeding wound. Jones, by many has been considered an underachiever. Which would explain why he was available. Jones should be a better fit at LT than Stephon Heyer or D'Batiste. I don't know that much about Quinton Ganther, but here's the link to his history and stats.

Zorn Demoted
By now, you know about Zorn's demotion from the playcalling duties. By now you also know that it will be Sherm Lewis calling the plays to Sherm Smith who will relay the plays to Jason Campbell. Speaking of guys named Sherm (or Sherman) here's what Jason Campbell may have to do to avoid the multitude of Eagles blitzers this week:

(Who doesn't love The Jeffersons?)

Even though Zorn has said the new system should run smoothly, I expect to see our 1st half timeouts used up by the middle of the 1st quarter. I also expect at least three delay of game penalties and a frustrated Jason Campbell. Part of me wants to see Campbell just go off and start running the no huddle with him calling about a dozen plays Sonny Jurgensen style. I think Campbell would get some respect from his detractors if he did this as a **** you to the current situation.

First thing is that this just looks bad overall. The front office is trying to scape goat the head coach as the problem of all of this. Mind you, Zorn deserves a great deal of blame on the lack of productivity from his offense. Especially in the Red Zone and yes, I would in particular blame some of the missteps on the playcalling. But there has been an extreme lack of execution by the players. Also, look at the personnel. The O-line is in shambles. Portis is dinged/older and there is nobody behind him who can run the ball (Betts is a decent draw play runner and pass catcher/blocker, but that's really about it). Campbell is still struggling and the WR corp. disappears for periods.

Much of this blame should be on the front office.
Also, what does this say about Snyder and Cerrato (or Snyderrato) when they brought Jim Zorn in to be the offensive coordinator? I would assume even if Mariucci or Fassel had gotten the job, Zorn probably would have been the playcaller. Zorn was way over his head from the get go.

Let the Zorn/Vinny Soap Opera begin:
There has been a regular subtle back and forth between Zorn and the FO since the demotion. Totally understandable. But it has gotten to the point where there seems to be a general daily back and forth between the two. "This didn't happen. Yes it did." "Vote of confidence, I'm not aware of it". Then you throw in the Steve Largent comments and it looks like the Skins are trying to get Zorn to quit, yet Zorn is forcing them to fire him.
It feels like a bad episode of Melrose Place or some other soap opera.
Frankly, I don't care.
Zorn will have plenty to say when he's fired at the end of the season. Snyderrato will have some type of spin about the whole situation.
Until then gentlemen, may I suggest you both getting your respective heads out of your asses and find a way to fix the current problems?
Both of you are to blame for this sinking ship......fix the damn problem.
Quit crying to the media. This is football, not some crappy reality series. You are not Jon and Kate.

John Gruden at the Park.......
Just for MNF preperation.

Notable Vinny Quote of the Week

"A different voice is good. To change the voice, to change something on offense to get a spark -- to me, that's all it was."
(Vinny on his Radio Show, via the Washington Times)

Maybe we need a different voice in ownership and the front office to get that spark hmmmmm.........?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Weekly Picks......10/18/2009

I'm going to go through this pretty quickly. Didn't do that great last week (7-7).
So here's my list of winners:


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Weekend Link Dump, Friday Night Videos

I don't know where you are at the moment, but for us in the DC/VA/MD area it's cold, wet and windy. Perfect weather to sleep in, get in some comfy clothes and watch a good movie or whatever is on TV. Sadly, the Sunday football schedule around here sucks. Here's some links and videos to waste your time:

John Riggins goes off on the Redskins. While I agree with him almost 100%, he really seems to be enjoying it. Especially about the comment about being last in the NFCE.

DC Pro Sports Report is hosting a weekly Round Table to discuss the Skins. This weeks question: Fire Jim Zorn Now Or Later?

BANG! Has another new cartoon discussing the new "Tom Brady Rule" with quarterbacks in the most humorous way possible. Also, check out the Bang Cartton Radio Hour.

New Skinscast ep. is up......lots of info. on why the Washington Examiner is reporting Jon Gruden is at the top of Snyder's coaching wish list.

Christmas is coming soon and sometimes you really need a drill sargent to get those elves to get to work (NSFW- language).

(Thanks to Sarge for finding this gem)

Tired of infomercials? Well, here's Infomercial Hell....where nothing works, maybe the solution is just to give up.

(From Everything is Terrible!)

Bram Weinstein thinks the Redskins will win with Snyder.....eventually

Songs stuck in my head this past week.........

(Tonic's Open Up Your Eyes)


(Peter Murphy's Cuts You Up)

Also, for any fans of Adult Swims The Venture Bros., season 4 starts Sunday at Midnight (or would that be considered Monday Morning?)

Finally, this is post #200. Amazing how much stuff I've had to write about in about 10 months........

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What A New Coach Should Want From the Redskins

By now almost 99% of Redskin fans know that Jim Zorn will be gone by the end of the 2009 season (if not sooner) and we also know that Snyder will be interested in a few coaches that have done well and that are currently on the market like Shanahan, Holmgren, Gruden, Cowher and Dungy. However, any head coach that isn't naive or desperate for a paycheck would know that the Redskins organization is in shambles.

And it starts at the top (to quote Carlos Rogers)........

I have to think that most of those guys listed would not come to this team with the current structure, so what should the Redskins do to get one of these guys here?

Here's a list of things that if I was going to coach the Skins would expect in changes from this organization. I think any coach would expect this unless they were truly naive or just were happy with the 5-10 million paycheck.
(Note: This was going to be The Redskins Manifesto with some other things added, but the change in philosophy was the main point)

1. Change Philosophy- The Skins need to conclude that most of what they've done the past few years have been wrong, thus this new regime is going to work differently from the top down in how we do business, run the team, develop personnel, address the media, deal with fans. There needs to be a firm commitment from ownership and the front office and without that, nothing will ever be accomplished.

2. Vinny Cerrato Must be Terminated- While Vinny seems to have some football acumen, it is clearly overshadowed by the fact that he's Daniel Snyder's "Right Hand Man" and it also seems clear that it's Snyder running the show moreso than the Executive VP of player personnel. The Redskins need a "football guy" who knows football, knows the league and knows how to run and manage a team and all of its various departments (at least on the football side of operations).

3. Hire a GM- Good GMs, real football guys, are out there. Since Jon Gruden seems to be a favorite of Snyder's, here's a name for you: Bruce Allen. Find a GM who has some experience and let him run the team. That means Snyder gives up enough power so that the GM has authority to tell him "NO". Remember Mr. Snyder, Jack Kent Cooke won Superbowls with GMs. You can't be a trend setter if you fail and this current set up (Snyder/Vinny running the show) isn't working, nor will it ever.

4. Accountability- Here's a quick question that may stump die hard Redskin fans: Who drafted Sean Taylor? Was it Snyder, Cerrato, Gibbs, Gregg Williams, Clinton Portis? That's the point. It was hard to tell who was doing what and who was signing off on what. That's been a big problem. Who's really running the show and has been running the show? All signs pre and post- Gibbs 2.0 point to Dan Snyder (via Vinny). The Redskins need to have accountability in all aspects of football operations from the owner down to the players. If there is accountability, then people will work harder to get the job done and done correctly.

5. Have a Plan- The Skins are a reactionary team. Instead of planning ahead for problems in the future (like an aging O-line) or having a plan in place, the Skins currently react by radically changing things or by overspending on free agents that will provide a quick fix to all of the problems (and they usually don't). What this team needs to do simply is have a plan. What type of coach do you want to lead this team? What type of scheme do you want to run and do you currently have the players here to run said scheme? What type of players will you need to run said scheme? Those are just a few questions, but you get the point......if the Skins plan ahead they may avoid some of the pitfalls they have fallen into over the past decade and save some money in the process.

5b. Have a Backup Plan- The Redskins should always have a list of GMs, potential head coaches, potential assistant coaches, scouts and players on hand. Sometimes coaches quit, get promoted (to other teams) or other reasons, same with front office people and same with players. If the Redskins have lists ready of potential candidates, they won't be caught flatfooted like they did when Gibbs left in 2007 and the Skins had no idea who they would bring in to replace him.

6. Stick to the Plan- Once the plan has been set up.....stick with it! How many times have the Redskins brought in players and even coaches that don't fit the current structure or scheme....thus making the situation worse.

7. Let the Coach Bring in His People and Players- Don't hamstring the coach by forcing him to use other coaches and schemes that he won't be comfortable. It didn't work with Zorn and it won't work with the next guy. Again, you are not a trend setter if your "trend" fails miserably.

8. Patience- Building a winning team from scratch takes time. The Redskins must allow this coach enough time (minimal 3 years; window 3-5 years) to build his team via draft and free agency. For everyone to learn the scheme and to gel as a unit. The hunger to win should always be there, but it takes time to develop the swagger and learn to win.

9. Honesty- With the fans and the media. You want to win a Superbowl every year. So does 31 other teams, but the organization needs the admit that it's starting over and doing it right this time. If the Redskins try to downplay any big moves or keep the big splashes to a minimal, maybe the fans will give the organization (especially the coach and the players) time to develop.

10. Evaluation- No plan is perfect. There are always bumps in the road. This is why the team and the organization needs to re-evaluate things at all levels and determine what needs to be adjusted......and don't go overboard. Most teams already does this and the Redskins do this at times as well, but it needs to be stated.

11. Win First, Market the Team Second- If the Redskins win, the Redskins will make boatloads of money. So instead of focusing on how to market the team and sell jerseys, the concentration needs to be on what it will take to win. "If you build it, they will come" and FedEx will be packed.

If the Redskins are willing to change their practices and team philosophy they, like other teams, have a good chance to turn things around and become a winning franchise again. It's up to Daniel Snyder to find the right people to do the job and let them do it. If he can do this, he could one day turn from the most hated owner to one of the greatest.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Weekly Picks 10/11/2009

So far I've been doing good on my weekly picks. I'm 41-21 (.661) for the season and that's not bad. Of course, it's only good for 18th place in the BGO pick 'em league, but it's a decent start for a long season.

Anyway, cue the music........

1PM Bengals (3-1) @ Ravens (3-1) (Ravens favored by 8.5)
Hard to believe that the Bengals are just one fluke play away from being 4-0. However, if the Browns played a little better, they're arguably 2-2. I'm not sure what to think about the Bengals, but I do know what to think about the Ravens. They're pretty damn good. Barring some questionable calls (the idiotic Tom Brady rule) and a dropped pass, the Ravens could a 4-0 team as well. I like the Ravens at home, but maybe closer than the spread.
Prediction: Ravens 27- 20

1PM Buccaneers (0-4) @ Eagles (2-1) (Eagles favored by 14)
With exception to last week's game vs. the Redskins, the Bucs have looked generally horrible and I don't think that changes this week. Expect the Eagles to take advantage of an inexperienced QB and a shoddy defense.
Prediction: Eagles 34- 16

1PM Browns (0-4) @ Bills (1-3) (Bills favored by 6)
Another ugly game this week. Braylon Edwards is gone. T.O. is a shell of his former self. Unless your a fan of either team (or play fantasy football or in a pick 'em league) don't wast your time with this one.
Prediction: Bills 16-13

1PM Steelers (2-2) @ Lions (1-3) (Steelers favored by 10.5)
This could be an upset game, but the Steelers are a much better team than the Redskins and I believe that they'll find a way to win. If they want to stay in competition for the AFCN title, they have to win this game.
Prediction: Steelers 24-14

1PM Redskins (2-2) @ Panthers (0-3) (Panthers favored by 3.5)
You know me. I normally take the Skins, because I'm such a homer. That streak ends today. The Skins are 0-2 on the road. They have been really mediocre all year. Zorn is about to be fired. Lewis comes in to be a "Bob" and Portis/Sellers are fighting. Add to that with a poor run D, the fact that Carolina is much better than their record shows. I expect Carolina to really trounce the Skins on the O-line. Man, I hope I'm wrong.
Prediction: Panthers 26-13 (I wouldn't be surprised if it was much worse)

1PM Cowboys (2-2) @ Chiefs (0-4) (Cowboys favored by 9)
The Chiefs might have a shot if the attack the Cowboys early and take advantage of the home field advantage.....but I doubt it.
Prediction: Cowboys 24- 13

1PM Raiders (1-3) @ Giants (4-0) (Giants favored by 16)
If David Carr started for the G-Men, I think the Gians would still win this one easily.
Prediction: Giants 34-10

1PM Vikings (4-0) @ Rams (0-4) (Vikings favored by 10)
Today would be a good day to give Brett Favre an early break. The Rams should be done by the 2nd quarter.
Prediction: Vikings 28-3

4:05PM Falcons (2-1) @ 49ers (3-1) (49ers favored by 2.5)
Even with the bye week, I think the 49ers are the better team.
Prediction: 49ers 24-21

4:15PM Texans (2-2) @ Cardinals (1-2) (Cardinals favored by 5.5)
This is a toss up. I think the Texans win with their D attacking Warner.
Prediction: Texans 27- 21

4:15PM Patriots (3-1) @ Broncos (4-0) (Patriots favored by 3)
The teacher bests the student in this match up.
Prediction: Patriots 20- 13

4:15PM Jaguars (2-2) @ Seahawks (1-3) (Seahawks favored by 1)
Tough game. The Jags are a tough team to figure out, I'm guessing they'll win today but who knows?
Prediction: Jags 17- 14

8:20PM Colts (4-0) @ Titans (0-4) (Colts favored by 3)
Titans really need a win, but it won't be this week.
Prediction: Colts 34- 20

8:30PM (MNF) Jets (3-1) @ Dolphins ( Jets favored by 2)
I like the Jets here.
Prediction: Jets 20-17

Monday, October 5, 2009

Why Zorn Didn't Bring in Collins?

There were many that suggested that it was time for Zorn to bench Jason Campbell in favor for veteran Todd Collins. When asked by the media if he thought about giving Campbell the hook, Zorn simply said "No".

Now many feel that this was because Zorn is deeply loyal to Campbell or that Zorn knows his job rides on Campbell's success........I say that there is more to it than that.
To me, there are reasons why he kept Campbell in there and in this game is was clearly the right move.

First, we know what Collins brings to the table: experience and quick release. Collins is a very smart guy who does his homework and prepares himself as if he will be starting. We've seen that mental reps. for him equate actual practice reps. He also tends to know where everybody is on the field and how to get the ball to them. His problems are also noteable: he's not really mobile and he has limited arm strength.

So, let's look at the game and figure if Collins would have been better than Campbell. The O-line at times really struggled against the Bucs front four and the occasional blitz packages. Campbell was sacked a few times and fumbled, but Campbell also made some plays with his feet which led to drive continuing first downs. Had Collins been in there, he may have avoided some of the sacks and hits by getting the ball out earlier or just throwing it away. However, Collins lack of mobility would have prevented the conversion of a few key third downs. Also, there was a key play by Campbell to Cooley in which Campbell plays actions the stretch play into a bootleg and then throws across his body to Chris Cooley for a big gain.

Zorn knows the deal and it's a deal that has been argued for probably the last 2-3 years. The O-line just isn't that great, especially in pass protection. Campbell has his problems and so does the WRs, but I think Zorn knew that the protection was limited and that they needed to throw to win the game (it seems clear by the pass choices, even after multiple INTs, that Zorn saw something in Tampa's D that would give Campbell an opportunity to go deep). Of the two QBs. Campbell is the only one who is mobile enough to make plays with his feet when the pocket collapses or if nobody is open.

Makes sense to me and prevents any quarterback controversy. Good news for Zorn is that his gamble worked and one has to hope that it will give the Skins some momentum going into this weeks game vs. the Panthers.

A Tale of Two Halves and My Gameday Experience

Skins Win 16-13
(......and my sanity is restored for another week)

* Skip to the Game Time section of this post if you want to read about only the game and not the adventures of your pal Walking Deadman

My day started at 4:45 AM. I had already packed most of my stuff for the game (grill, cooler, chairs, jerseys, football, tables etc.) and just had to pack up the food, drinks and any other items that I can think of before we leave (yet, I always still find a way to forget something that I could use when tailgating).

By 6:15 AM my friend, lets call him SHD, shows and we load up his stuff into the car. We're on our way by 6:30AM (on time to be there at FedEx by the time the gates open).

The ride to FedEx is about the same as normal. We make a stop about a half hour out to get some ice, some coffee (Caffeine is our friend!!!!!) and some breakfast (to quote Homer Simpson: Ummm Donuts). The only difficult element of the day was the fog on the 'shore side of the trip. I nearly ran a red at one intersection because I couldn't see the light until I was right on top of it. As you make your way to FedEx, you normally see fellow Skins fans make their trek as well and there is the occasional honking of horns or fist pumping/saluting it's pretty easy to tell where I'm going since my car is adorned with flags, decals and helmet magnets.

So we get to the gates off of Morgan Blvd. at around 8:50 AM. There's some guy on Sportstalk 980 ranting about making us big money if we call his 1-800 hotline. Of course, he's giving away many of his picks for free all we have to do is call the number. SHD says "Well if he's giving them away for free why won't he just tell us on the air"? The radio guy screams "I WILL MAKE YOU LOTS OF MONEY!!!!! If you only had the insider info about these games that I do!!!!" We had some off color jokes and Simpson's references made about the rantings of a guy that seemed to know as much about football as any other person. I do admit that I love these prognosticator infomericals....they're hilarious.

They opened the gates about 5 minutes early, which was a blessing because the coffee was catching up with us. It always pays to get there early because then you have the pick of the lot and we found a nice place away from the traffic over by a fence. Some interesting things of note:
1) It seems like everybody shows up to ask you for money. We had people asking to help the homeless/hungry, people selling candy bars for prom and a guy playing sax for tips (he played Hail to the Redskins well). 2) The sorority handing out the Think Pink ribbons were out in the parking lots handing them out. 3) Despite the utter frustration and pretty much consensus opinion that the Redskins are a mediocre bunch at best, a large crowd showed up. Maybe because tailgates are the best party in town, I suppose. Maybe, the fans thought the Skins might actually have a chance to win? It's clear that the fans aren't happy, just read the Sports Bog's take on the game but they showed none the less.......I guess the tickets are already paid for, might as well go. That was my opinion.

Game Time
Frankly, the Redskins are a lousy, lousy team. Time, poor judgement and bad moves in drafting and personnel have caught up to us and it clearly has shown with the 2009 Redskins. On the opening drive, Jason Campbell is sacked twice and fumbles. The resulting play leads to Tampa's only touchdown.

Complete miscues by the offense including two Jason Campbell INTs, poor blocking by the O-line, predictable play calls (the Skins only ran stretch plays to the left and right and the occasional draw play in their run least that's what I saw) and poorly run routes by many of the WRs.

Only the play by the defense kept this team alive. While giving up some yardage on the ground, they kept Tampa far enough away on most drives to force Mike Nugent to kick field goals. Luckily, with some of the wind and Nugent struggling, Nugent was only 1/3 in his 1st half attempts. We're at halftime down 10-0.

At this point I'm having a mild Mike Valenti rant up in Section 403.

My voice was already starting to crack from all of the screaming in the 1st half. No, I didn't boo if you were curious. As I have said before, I don't boo my team. However, as I have said before for those who have I don't blame them. Especially when you pay what you have to pay to see this team and that's not counting if you buy food/merchandise/drinks, the drive time to get to FedEx and the effort to make the trek there.

"Make Plays!!!!!" "I did my job, I showed up to play!!!" I was saying in my best hoarse Valenti voice. Sure it was in jest, but I was pissed what a way to end a weekend off. What a waste of my time. I could be at home watching the Red Zone channel. Somehow, we decided to stay for the second half and finally my team showed up. It wasn't pretty but there were some moments.

Portis ran the ball in spurts and the O-line gave him some holes to get yardage. It's been rare this season to see gains of 5-7 yards but we were finally seeing it. A nice pick by Hall set up the Redskins first score and the Skins were down 10-3. Then the Skins finally had a effective drive and Campbell hit Cooley for the TD (I need to re-watch this drive on TV, SHD dropped his phone and we were in the process of finding it when Cooley scored). Of course, for every good play the Skins make, they tend to make a bad one. Ronde Barber came around untouched and blocked the extra point, so the Skins remain down 10-9.

It was the bomb to Moss that made it for everybody as Campbell heave a ball that hovered enough for Moss to get ahead of the corner and make the catch. Moss still has that great speed and you have to hope that this play and the play last week in Detroit will help the Skins open up something for players other than Cooley and Randel-El. 16-10 Skins.

The D continued to hold their ground and stop the offense from scoring a TD despite letting Nugent convert another FG. The crowd noise at this point was great and again, I need to re-watch this game to see how it sounded on the TV. In the end, it was the D that finished it off with a Jarmon forced fumbled that was recoved by Chris Horton. Who knew that the kneel down is one of the best plays of the game? Skins win 16-13.

The defense had a much better game as they held the Bucs to 2/13 on 3rd down conversions (15%). Much better than the 51% they were averaging in the prior three games. Jason Campbell made plays in this game both good and bad. He needs to be better at preventing fumbles. The 3 INT game is a rarity for him (and a good performance by Tampa's Aqib Talib) and you wonder if Campbell was trying to force the ball to make a play (2 of the three INTs I'd say was the case, the third I wonder if it was a bad route by Kelly). I still wonder about the playcalling by Zorn as some of the plays were predictable, but I did like how Zorn turned a stretch play (used only a dozen times in this game) into a play action bootleg to Cooley for a big gain. The O-line blocking still looks average to poor in many cases and it doesn't look like their is a big push on run plays. Chris Samuels looked like he was struggling and that is a major concern. Hunter Smith's injury (groin) is also a big concern as he's been one of the few reliable players this season.

A win is a win, but we have to remember that this was against a team that other good teams have relatively destroyed. Also, for right now and the next few seasons (heck, maybe until Snyder is no longer the owner) never take the Skins if they are favored to win by more than five.

Here's some things I'm thinking about this team right now.
1. Clinton Portis- I'm convinced that either CP is more banged up than we know or has hit that 30 year wall already (yes, I know CP is 28 but for football he's an old 28 and has been in this league for a very long time) or a little of both. He fought for those yards and is still one of the toughest players on the field, but he has clearly lost some of that burst and speed from previous years. I have a feeling that he'll be averaging around 3.5-4.0 yards per carry this season.

2. It's time to start Marko Mitchell- Malcolm Kelly, Devin Thomas and Fred Davis have been non-factors. The Skins aren't really using Kelly's height advantage, so why not bench one of these guys and give Mitchell a shot. He was the most productive WR in the preseason. Could he really be any worse than what we're seeing with these guys right now? Also, let's see more of Todd Yoder. He's a better blocker than Davis and seems to be a good target for Campbell in the Red Zone.

3. Carlos Rogers will never be an elite corner- You can argue that Rogers is the best corner on the team right now. He is the best cover corner. He tackles and hits better than any of the other guys. He plays the run well. However, he has hands of stone and can't hold onto anything. Rogers dropped another INT that could have easily been a TD. Every time he does this I think of the Rock Eater from The Neverending Story:

(They look like good, strong hands don't they?)

4. Brian Orakpo and Jeremy Jarmon will be the Skins starting defensive ends for a long time- Orakpo got sack #2 of this season and his career yesterday and Jarmon saw a decent amount of playing time at DT and DE and forced the game ending fumble. It's nice to see a few of Vinny's draftees pan out. Now if they would just move Orakpo to starting DE and find a SLB, then I'd be happy.

5. Was the PA announcer tailgating? The PA announcer at FedEx made a few blunders at the game and while he normally is excellent it was kind of funny. He called Clinton Portis "Porter". He gave credit to DeAngelo Hall for a really nice hit by Carlos Rogers (Really? I can't ever tell them apart from each other. Their styles are so similar *note sarcasm*). The play/drive of the 1st half was a 15 yard pass from Campbell to Moss........that's not the PA guy's fault it's just sad overall.

6. Shawn Suisham can punt (well enough)- After the injury to Smith, Suisham came out and punted three times for a mediocre 25.3 average. Mind you, that's not that much worse than what the punters on the team last year were doing. The key punt however came on the last Redskins offensive drive. With the Skins around mid-field, Suisham punted the ball out of bounds on the Tampa 19. It forced the Bucs to play hurry up offense and gave the Skins opportunities to make some plays. Overall, it wasn't pretty but it was well enough for this game. Skins better hope Smith gets healthy quick or can find a really good punter off the street.

Only two things of note happened for us post-game. One was that myself, SHD (who is a Ravens fan rooting for the Skins BTW) and some of the people around us were being thanked for being so loud when the team was on defense. It was a highlight for me personally since as many of you know my goal is to one day have FedEx rocking the way RFK used to (of course you need a winning team to help with that) rock with the crowd noise. Second, was the quote of the day. It was on a sign held by two ladies as they were walking out of the stadium.

"Don't hate the playas (or the game). Hate the owner."

Very interesting commentary on the Skins and their organization, don't you think?
Finally got home around was a very long day to say the least.