Earlier this week in a press conference, Redskins Head Coach Mike Shanahan was asked if this team was rebuilding (just like he gets asked nearly every week). His response was, “Well, that depends. What do you consider a ‘rebuild’?” I swear he runs from that word like it’s profane language or something. Like he’s afraid someone will come after him and try to wash his mouth out with soap.
Later on in the same press conference, he relives the time when his son Kyle Shanahan opted to come here versus staying in Houston, a team that had already become a proven system. Mike’s words to Kyle, “I’m the one who told Kyle not to come… I said, ‘This is going to be a work in progress, it’s not gonna happen overnight. You’re with an established team… you’ve got your ducks in order.’ I said, ‘We’re going to have to rebuild this football team.’”
He goes on later in the same press conference to deny that they’re rebuilding again. LOL. As if there’s anything wrong with rebuilding. And then all I hear is “growing pains” and what-not. Last time I checked, “growing pains” are usually associated with change. But he still doesn’t know what rebuild means, apparently.
Well, Mike, you wanted a definition? Here it is… straight from the dictionary:
1. to repair, especially to dismantle and reassemble with new parts: i.e. – to rebuild an old car.
2. to replace, restrengthen, or reinforce: i.e. – to rebuild an army.
3. to revise, reshape, or reorganize: i.e. – to rebuild a shattered career.
1. “To repair, especially to dismantle and reassemble with new parts…” Sounds a lot like what happened in all facets of this team. Dropped players who you felt didn’t fit your scheme (which turned out to be quite a few) and picked up all new guys. Some guys fit your scheme and you felt they were too old for the “youth movement”… but I digress. Bottom line is, compared to last year’s roster, there’s only 29 guys who were here before out of the 53 man roster. That’s a 55% change. In the construction industry, if you remodel a house more than 50%, you are required by law to make sure the house has a functioning fire suppression system (sprinklers) because at that point, you are essentially rebuilding the structure.
2. “To replace, restrengthen, or reinforce”… Sounds like a rebuild to me. When you have holes you’re trying to patch long term, you start fresh and draft them. When a street has so many holes that all patching does is make it unbearable to drive on, it’s best to just start with fresh new asphalt. And they didn’t do this?? Perfect example… the front three in the defensive line. It would have been all new had Jarvis Jenkins remained healthy. So the only guy who remained from last season was Adam Carriker (who is playing like an animal). Cofield, Bowen… Cofield’s backup Chris Neild… all new. Replace, restrengthen, reinforce. Check.
3. “To revise, reshape, or reorganize”… When I think of this, I think of the wide receiving corps, which gets revised, reshaped, and reorganized every single week. Outside of Jabar Gaffney and Santana Moss who went down with a broken hand, there have been different pieces used just about every week. It began as The Moss/Gaffney Hour with special guest Anthony Armstrong. AAA goes down with a hamstring for a couple weeks, the frequent guests end up being Donte Stallworth and Terrance Austin. Now its the Gaffney Hour with co-host Hank Time and special guest T.A. in the slot… every week, it’s something different. Before cuts in camp, there were 13 wideouts on the team. Out of those guys, 3 guys were from last year’s roster who remained. Moss, Armstrong, and T.A. I’m not going to count Banks, he really just returns kicks (one of the few things that wasn’t rebuilt). Now if that’s not revision, reshaping and reorganization, I don’ t know what is.
Mom always told me growing up that if you don’t know what something means, to look it up. And It’s wrong to say you’re not rebuilding by shuffling in guys as needed, whether old or young. The bottom line is, it’s a personnel issue. If more than half of your squad is different, then dog-gone-it, you are rebuilding. Just admit it. We won’t be mad.
Besides, the dictionary says so. Don’t believe me? Look it up for yourself.
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