Tag:Washington Redskins
Posted on: September 7, 2010 1:42 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2010 1:45 pm

Week 1 Top Ten with a Twist: front offices

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

The front office, like most of the players it pays, doesn’t take much of an offseason. The general managers and the other executives – player personnel and otherwise – are constantly remodeling the team. Get rid of the guy who’s too slow for the system, sign to an extension the cornerback who could be the league’s next breakout star, fire the coach who’s taken the team as far as he can, draft the perfect offensive lineman for the team’s scheme, etc.

And like the players you watch every week, these front offices are to be judged. In the first of our weekly Top Ten with a Twist, I’m grading out the front offices. Without further ado, here’s the list:

Top 10 Front Office Performances from 2010 Offseason

10. Chiefs: Second-year coach Todd Haley, after a rough first year in which he worked his team to the bone, has been more pleasant this offseason. He’s even been spotted … gasp … smiling. That’s probably because the front office, led by GM Scott Pioli, made his team better. Kansas City signed Thomas Jones – you know, the guy who was the NFL’s third-leading rusher last year before the Jets parted ways with him – and they had a good draft. Eric Berry and Javier Arenas will make a big impact in the secondary and Dexter McCluster will be a standout on offense. The Chiefs won’t sniff .500 this year, but they’re headed that way.M. Tannenbaum (US Presswire)
9. Raiders: Yes, Al Davis still makes bizarre decisions (he reportedly was the only one who wanted to keep Mike Mitchell and cut Steve Brown at safety that turned cutdown day into a confusing series of events), but the most important one this front office made was to rid themselves of JaMarcus Russell and to bring in Jason Campbell. Campbell will never be an elite quarterback, but he could lead Oakland back to respectability (meaning they’ll have a chance to go 8-8). Simply for getting rid of Russell, that makes the front office a shoe-in for this list, but they also drafted LB Rolando McClain with the first-round pick - they thought so much of him they traded away Kirk Morrison – and added LB Kamerion Wimbley.
8. Cardinals: While I absolutely hate the Derek-Anderson-is-starting-at-QB move, Arizona had a solid offseason. It let Matt Leinart go finally after it was clear he was never going to make it, but most importantly, it didn’t give in to Darnell Docket’s repeated requests during the past few seasons for contract extensions, not wanting to set a bad precedent by giving him an extension when he still had more than two years on his deal. But just before this season was to begin, the team rewarded him and possibly made him a Cardinal for life. Just for not folding, they’re in my top-10. Now, if the front office could just keep him from videotaping himself while in the shower …
7. Bengals: They had a good draft, selecting TE Jermaine Gresham, DE Carlos Dunlap, WR Jordan Shipley, CB Brandon Ghee and DL Geno Atkins, all of whom should get some (or plenty of) playing time. Further playing into the stereotype that the club is the NFL’s version of the Betty Ford Clinic, owner Mike Brown also brought in WR Terrell Owens and CB Adam Jones (you know him better as Pacman). Both moves could backfire, but they also could be outstanding. I’ll give major points off because the Antonio Bryant signing was a disaster (they spent $8 million and got only a couple practices out of him) and because they, for some strange reason, haven’t locked up a new contract with Marvin Lewis. If they lose him, there’s no way Cincinnati is back on this list next year.
6. Lions: Look, their defense has been terrible the last few years, and sure, the addition of star-in-waiting Ndamukong Suh in the first round of the draft was a no-brainer pick. But considering the number of occasions the Lions have screwed up their first-round selection, this one was actually the right move. Then, they got RB Jahvid Best later in the first round, and if concussions don’t prove to be a problem for him, that’s a nice pick. Adding WR Nate Burleson will help WR Calvin Johnson and QB Matt Stafford, as well. The defense probably still will struggle, but hey, at least Detroit is on the right rack. That’s not something you can always say going into a new season.
5. Vikings: Yes, the front office emasculated itself by outright begging Brett Favre to return to the team (pretty, pretty please), but ultimately, the Vikings knew they needed to make this happen. They needed Favre, because they obviously don’t trust Tarvares Jackson. I like the sixth-round Joe Webb pick quite a bit, and I like the trade of Sage Rosenfels even better. The trade for former Dolphins WR Greg Camarillo was a great addition when it was unclear what would happen with Sidney Rice and Percy Harvin. The Vikings know there’s no time like the present (especially when Favre is leading your squad), and they’re acting like it.
4. Seahawks: If we were going with the quantity over quality award, Seattle would be No. 1 without question. It started with the hiring of Pete Carroll, though I’m not sure he’s the right answer as the head coach (it’s hard to get an image of Carroll parachuting out of a sinking USC meteorite and landing softly and safely in the Pacific Northwest). He’s helped remake the roster through the draft (Russell Okung, Earl Thomas and Golden Tate) and through (what seems like) hundreds of other moves. I really don’t like paying so much money for backup QB Charlie Whitehurst, and I hate that the team has to pay most of T.J. Houshmandzadeh’s salary while he’s playing in Baltimore (hey, not every single one of those thousands of offseason transactions can work perfectly). But newly-acquired RB Leon Washington looks recovered from his knee injury and WR Mike Williams looks to be resurgent.
3. Ravens: I love the Marc Bulger signing (even if Joe Flacco doesn’t). WR Anquan Boldin also will prove to be a very good addition, and now with Houshmandzadeh in the mix, they’ll battle with the Bengals for the AFC North crown. I don’t think Baltimore is the favorite, but, with GM Ozzie Newsome in its corner, there’s no reason to think the Ravens won’t return to the playoffs. They’ve had some bad luck with their secondary, but I’m not sure how much else the front office could have done to improve it. The rest of the team will simply have to cover for the defensive backs.
2. Redskins: Above all else, they hired Mike Shanahan to run the team. This club has made some baffling decisions the past few years – none more so than handing Albert Haynesworth $100 million – but hiring Shanahan to show Haynesworth who is boss and trading for Donovan McNabb, who still has gas in his fuel tank, were good moves. How LT Trent Williams performs – the Redskins chose him over Russell Okung – will be a big factor in how well Washington plays this year. They’re not going to win the division, but they’ll be better than their 4-12 record from a season ago.

1. Jets: I’ve made no apologies for my thoughts that the Jets could play for the Super Bowl. Yeah, they weren’t great last year, at least until they got in the playoffs, but the front office has improved the team heading into this season. They brought in Antonio Cromartie to start next to Darrelle Revis, and they drafted another CB Kyle Wilson in the first round. They’ve taken care of three of their Core Four, and even if the timetable with Revis wasn’t ideal, at least the deal got done. Plus, the front office extended the contracts of Rex Ryan and Mark Tannenbaum when it didn’t have to do so (some see this as a negative, but I like the forward thinking). The jury is still out on LaDainian Tomlinson, but as a No. 2 RB who’s not overly expensive, I don’t mind the risk at all. The Jets are acting like they want to win the super bowl. How could you not love that?

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Posted on: September 7, 2010 9:15 am
Edited on: September 7, 2010 9:25 am

Redskins-Titans talking Haynesworth trade

Posted by Andy Benoit

Chris Mortensen of ESPN is reporting that the Washington Redskins are having talks with the Tennessee Titans about a trade for Albert Haynesworth. This is not the first time these two teams have discussed the disgruntled defensive tackle.A. Haynesworth

Haynesworth’s relationship with the Redskins, and especially Mike Shanahan, has been strained, to say the least. Their epic power struggle remains ongoing. Shanahan had Haynesworth play virtually the entire fourth preseason game. This past week, there were rumors that Haynesworth would still be deactivated for Week 1.

At the moment, there is no deal in place between Haynesworth’s former team and current team. But stay with the story. Even if no trade pans out, in the very least, we could get another round of “I don’t care, I hate this organization anyway” type quotes from Mr. Haynesworth.

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Posted on: September 6, 2010 6:41 pm

Shanahan: McNabb is 'ready to go'

Posted by Will Brinson

There was some concern that Donovan McNabb wouldn't be able to play against the Cowboys during Week 1 as a result of the ankle injury he sustained during the preseason .

Based on comments from Mike Shanahan Monday, that appears to be overblown.

"He’s ready to go," Shanahan said.

That was following McNabb's participation in practice, which means it's fairly safe to say he'll play, especially considering as early as yesterday it already seemed like a good bet that the ex-Eagle would be prepped and ready to roll against the Cowboys.

Shanahan's comments just make things (almost) official and mean we can all go back to wondering what the hell will happen with Albert Haynesworth in Washington's first game.

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Posted on: September 6, 2010 2:52 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2010 12:12 am

Maybe Haynesworth will play (who knows, though)

Now, word is A. Haynesworth will play in Washington's season opener (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

In yet another twist in what has become a tiring, tiring rollercoaster ride, it now appears Redskins DL Albert Haynesworth WILL play against Dallas in the season opener.

This, according to the Washington Post.

Two days ago, we told you it was possible coach Mike Shanahan would deactivate Haynesworth for the Cowboys game, and according to Jason Reid, Haynesworth didn’t play many snaps in Washington’s practice Saturday.

Since his poor performance in the team’s preseason finale, Haynesworth – who had been seeing plenty of time at the DE spot – was moved back inside, a move he couldn’t have enjoyed.

But now, the pendulum has swung the other way, and it’s on the upswing.

Hopefully, we won’t have to write about Haynesworth any more until Sunday, so unless there’s more crazy breaking news, here’s what COULD happen with Haynesworth in the season opener.

1)He could start.

2)He could not start but play.

3)He could be on the inactive list and not play.

4)He could kick field goals.

5)He could be that dude who carries Shanahan’s headphones wire up and down the sidelines.

6)He could be tweeting and writing blog posts Sunday along with Andy, Will and I on the Facts & Rumors blog.

My educated guess: either No. 2 or No. 6.

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Posted on: September 5, 2010 10:41 pm
Edited on: September 5, 2010 10:55 pm

Washington, Oakland provide chance for Housh

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

It sounds like former Seattle WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh, cut by the Seahawks on Saturday, is down to two options on where he might play this season.

According to the Seattle Times, those two squads are the Redskins and the Raiders.

Washington wouldn’t be a bad spot for Houshmandzadeh. Santana Moss is the No. 1 receiver, but the other starter, Joey Galloway, will turn 39 this season. He had a rough preseason and might be ready to abdicate his starting spot to Devin Thomas or Anthony Armstrong.

Plus, Malcolm Kelly was placed on IR. It’d be a good bet that if the Redskins would sign Houshmandzadeh, he’d immediately take the place of Galloway.

Oakland might make even more sense – from the Raiders perspective, at least.

For now, Louis Murphy is QB Jason Campbell’s top target, while Darrius Heyward-Bey continues to struggle in his pro career and Chaz Schilens is injured. Houshmandzadeh would be a huge upgrade for Oakland.

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Posted on: September 5, 2010 12:17 pm

McNabb likely to start for 'Skins

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Though he said a week ago that he wasn’t sure if his starting quarterback would be ready to play the season-opener, Washington coach Mike Shanahan predictably has reversed course.

On his weekly coach’s show, Shanahan said he expected McNabb to play vs. the Cowboys.

"Yeah, I feel very good about him being ready to go," Shanahan said in quotes captured by the D.C. Sports Bog. "In fact, I think he'll be able to practice in the next couple of days. And I feel very good about the direction he's headed."

So, there you go. Redskins fans rejoice. Backup Rex Grossman gnashes his teeth. And everything is as it should be in the world.

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Posted on: September 4, 2010 8:52 pm

Maybe Haynesworth won't play in opener

A. Haynesworth didn't perform well against Arizona, and now it's being reported he might not play the season opener against Dallas (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

We told you a couple days ago that it was possible that Redskins coach Mike Shanahan would make DT Albert Haynesworth inactive for Washington’s season-opener. I was skeptical about this theory – aside from just an absolute hellacious case of Shanahan holding a grudge, it didn’t make much sense to me - but there’s more news out there tonight that (sort of) confirms the original news.

According to Jason Reid of the Washington Post, Haynesworth’s unimpressive showing in the team’s fourth preseason game has led to renewed thoughts that the $100 million man isn’t committed to the team.

From the Post:

Haynesworth was "awful" Thursday during the Cardinals' 20-10 victory at University of Phoenix Stadium, said two of the team sources who recently reviewed game film. It often appeared he gave little effort while participating in 49 of the Redskins' 55 defensive plays. On the few occasions he did play hard, the two sources said, Haynesworth failed to adhere to the principles of the new 3-4 scheme. He was credited with four tackles, including three unassisted.

All three sources indicated that Coach Mike Shanahan has lost his patience with the ongoing Haynesworth drama. During practice at Redskins Park Saturday, Haynesworth took part in very few plays, one of the sources said. He was moved back to nose tackle -- he had been working primarily at right end recently -- and removed from the nickel package.

If this is true (and there’s no reason to believe it isn’t true), it’s hard to see how Haynesworth would be active when Washington plays host to Dallas on Sept. 12.

The Redskins didn’t comment, saying Shanahan will address the media Monday.

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Posted on: September 4, 2010 12:00 pm
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