The Washington Football Team may have lost their original name, but they were able to win the offseason by changing their organizational culture.
For nearly 25 years under the ownership of Daniel Snyder, the Washington Football Team has been the subject of broad, consistent, and well-deserved mockery. The derision has come from everywhere — local fans, local media members, other fan-bases, and national pundits. At various points, even local and national politicians have gotten in on the feeding frenzy.
Perhaps the worst part is that if fans of the team are honest with themselves, the almost incessant panning of the team has been mostly fair.
Snyder and his seemingly never-ending parade of under-performance on the field has only been eclipsed on the embarrassment scale by the scandalous and unacceptable treatment of women that has apparently been pervasive throughout the organization throughout the Snyder era. A once-proud organization has been brought to its knees.
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In spite of this relentless failure, Snyder and his lieutenants consistently worked to claim victory in the midst of each offseason, believing they had unearthed the secret to success and vaulted themselves into contention only to be terribly and dramatically crashed back to earth by the team’s on-field performances.
This offseason, however, the tables are turned. The team being unceremoniously forced to shed their 87-year nickname, blasted by a series of exposés on the mistreatment of women throughout the organization under Snyder’s leadership, and their new head coach being diagnosed with cancer all piled on top of the challenges of handling COVID-19 in this, the oddest of offseasons in recent memory.
And yet, dig a little under the surface, and you find the Football Team has obviously had their best offseason in a quarter-century. In this, the final “Reality Check” of the offseason, I want to explore why I think that’s true.