Only Mike Shanahan knows if he was trying to get himself fired, or if he was trying to force a contract extension that would get him even more power than he had before. But if he was trying to force Redskins owner Daniel Snyder’s hand, then he failed. As Snyder didn’t take Shanahan’s bait, and remained quiet, letting the end of the season play out without interference.
If Shanahan allegedly leaked negative reports about Snyder to the media in an effort to prove that he was the victim of a meddling owner, then I don’t think Shanahan ending up getting what he wanted. Because even if what’s been alleged about Snyder is true, how much can a meddling owner really have on a four year sampling of a head coach’s record?
Shanahan was 24-40 as the Washington Redskins head coach, ending his tenure with a 3-13 record and eight straight losses. One of the leaked reports stated that Shanahan wanted to quit last season, and didn’t go through with it. But considering how this season unraveled, I think he would have been better off leaving then. Because there was clearly trouble brewing long before this season began.
Starting with the lack of trust between Shanahan and quarterback Robert Griffin III, the rumor that Shanahan felt Snyder was too close to the quarterback, and Griffin continuing on as starter without having an off-season to properly prepare for it. Did Shanahan really believe this team could win the Super Bowl? Or was he just biding his time in using the media to help him stage a more favorable exit?
We may never get the real answers to those questions, although it will be interesting to hear Shanahan’s explanation of all that’s transpired over the past few months. However, I think it matters little now. As the Redskins will need to move beyond all the drama as quickly as possible. Because I think Mike Shanahan’s actions have already spoken louder than his words.