I’m going to say what needs to be said, even if my application for a press pass for the Washington Redskins never sees the light of day. I haven’t actually submitted an application mind you, but I intend to during the offseason. Hopefully by then this article and my name will no longer be associated with one another in the minds of the Redskins’ front office. If they are, I might as well flush the application down La toilette, which is practically french for crapper.
Mike Shanahan, Head Coach of our beloved and frustrating Washington Redskins, is full of absolute unadulterated crap. His passive-aggressive interviews are a joke. I don’t see why he bothers granting them. He hides behind all kinds of self-convinced axioms to fail to provide any real information to the fans of this team. If he knew anything at all about the tradition known as the DC area’s love affair with Pro Football Inc. (The Redskins), he’d know the fans in this town aren’t used to being treated like jilted lovers.
You can’t ask Coach Shanahan who will start Monday among the running backs. He’d answer you if they were all healthy, but he “can’t this week because they’re not healthy”. I would if I could but I can’t so I won’t. Ask him some other basic fact you’re told you’re pretty much asking him to reveal a secret that will diminish the Redskins’ chance of winning that week’s game. And, how dare the beat reporters who attend training camp tell Redskins’ fans what formation the team practiced during a given day in camp. If they do, Shanny will cut off their access. He came right out and said so.
We’ve all seen coaches who say little or nothing at press conferences. Cheeseburger Andy Reid is a master of that, even though he sometimes comes out of his shell. Have you noticed he’s done so more frequently since shipping Number 5 to Ashburn? Then, there’s the other extreme. You absolutely never wanted to miss a Bill Parcells news conference. He made Herm Edwards sound sedated, and that’s when Parcells’ teams won. Mike Shanahan makes an Andy Reid presser sound downright mysterious and intriguiging. Anything other than “We’ll all know who’s starting once kickoff arrives” or “Whoever plays best this week during practice will play” would be nice.
The point is, by now we’ve all heard Mike Shanahan spew his general philosophy about how a player earns the right to start. What we’d like to know is ”How are you going to get more production out of your offense?” Surely he can provide some high-level insight without revealing specific plays or formations. After all, can you imagine Andy Reid or Tom Coughlin changing the game plans they installed Wednesday thru Friday because they heard Mike Shanahan say on Saturday he’s going to revert to the short passing game if the running game isn’t going well enough, and that the Skins could throw in a couple of reverses if the situation dictates? Holy competitive edge Batman! Is Shanny really afraid of that? Hmmm.
Maybe, just maybe, Mike Shanahan doesn’t like talking to the press except when he’s in a specific mood and when the interviewer follows a script. Maybe he figures reporters are a bunch of leaches that he simply doesn’t have time for during the season. That would be fine if the loyal long-suffering fans didn’t deserve some insights into the team and game they love. I say we do. But, I’ll compromise. Tell ya what Coach – get that stinkin’ offense in gear so it can score at least 20 points per game. If you won’t talk, win. If you’re not going to win this season, you might as well start giving us a little somethin’ somethin’. You can always clam up next year. The only thing worse than someone who is detached and bull-headed is a loser that’s detached and bull-headed. For the fans’ sake, I hope this edition of Coach Shanahan is neither.