Ask Boswell: Redskins, Nationals and Washington sports

Jan 22, 2018

Washington Post Sports Columnist Tom Boswell answered your questions about the Redskins, Capitals, Nationals, Wizards, the NFL and more.

Past Ask Boswell chats

If someone like Gronk had a concussion 10 years ago like the one he had yesterday, how long before supposedly smart football people would have let him back into the game? Hits like that want me to turn off the TV but I hope at least we are making a little progress in not letting him back into the game after giving him some smelling salts.

In the old days, I think it's likely that he would have returned for the second half. So, things have improved in that regard.

I'm surprised that only a few people have mentioned this as a cheap-shot hit. I thought it was in real time and every time I watched it on slow mo. NFL players (meaning DBs) have defended the hit by saying it would have REALLY been dirty to go at Gronk's knees. Gimme a break. There is about a 4-foot "target" that is above Gronk's knees and still below the helmet. Look at the hit in slo-slo-mo and I think it's pretty clear that Church saw a chance for a head shot and took it. You can't prove it. 

Of course, even if it was dirty, it was only 10 percent as dirty as Gronk's vicious hit on the fallen Tre'Davious White which got Gronk a one-day suspension this year.

I don't believe two wrongs make a right. Gronk's hit was awful. Church's was just a clear penalty and a case, imo, of it's-worth-the-15-yards-if-I-get-this-guy-out-of-the-game.

If Jax had won, it would be a huge subject of discussion this a.m. rather than Subject 10 after another amazing Patriot's playoff comeback -- their FOURTH straight time in the playoffs in which they have come back to win after being down by 10 points or more: Ravens, Seahawks, Falcons and now Jags.

What's your take on the pitch clock rule that seems to be coming from MLB? I think there are key situations where the game NEEDS to slow down. And the game and the players have always been able to do that. When Jayson Werth is 13 pitches into an epic battle at the plate how would a pitch clock help? When Scherzer is on pitch number 120 in a 3-2 count and is yelling at himself on the mound should he be thinking about a pitch clock?

I'm in favor of the pitch clock, any pitch clock. You make the rule, I'll agree to it. I've felt that way for many years.

Players adapt quickly to any rules change in any sport. How many times have pass interference rules changed in the NFL since the bump-and-run was legal long ago? Nobody gets driven out of the league by a rules change.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports got a copy of a memo concerning possible new rules, proposed in '17, which can be unilaterally imposed this year by the commissioner without approval of the MLB union. Obviously, Rob Manfred would prefer consensus with the players, but since they haven't agreed, I think he would be wise to go ahead with the clock and limited mound visits. (And it's assumed by many that this is what will happen. Here are the details of the possible new rules which Yahoo printed based on the memo Passan got.

"The pitch clock starts when the pitcher has the ball and is on the mound (not the rubber, so he can't stay off of it for a while) and stops when either he starts his windup or comes set in the stretch. The pitcher can step off to reset the clock, though. Batters have to step into the box within five seconds of the clock starting. 

"Pitchers who violate the rule will get one warning and then it's an automatic ball each time after that. 

"On mound visits, anyone visiting the mound -- including the catcher -- means it counts as a trip. If the pitcher leaves the mound to talk with anyone, that's also a trip. Two trips in the same inning means the pitcher must be removed and the team only gets six total trips in a game before each ensuing trip has to be a pitching change.

"MLB is also tightening up the time between innings and between batters."

I'd like to see the mound trips reduced to four per team and, someday, to fewer than that.

This could be a very good year for those of us who have begged for changes like this for...well....forever.

Baseball only has one serious issue right now with the game as played on the field -- it's 15 to 25 minutes too long. Anything over an average time of 2:50 is too much (for me). And anything between 2:40-2:45 would be excellent.

I hope Manfred steps up and gives the fans, and the game itself, the new rules.  If it doesn't work out to be beneficial for some reason, you can go always back -- although, I'll admit, rules changes in any sport are seldom reversed. 

I'm sure that some, like this chatter, have reasons which are strongly and sincerely felt about keep the rules as they are. I've never been a "traditionalist." I go case by case. Just because it's "old" doesn't mean its good...or bad. 

Baseball in 2:40 to 2:45 might be so good I could hardly stand it.

So if the Lerners only succeed in signing a long term contract to either Harper or Rizzo, which one is more important to the long term success of the Nationals?

Rizzo.

Here's why.

There is a totally logical, and very difficult debate about whether ANY player at any age is worth a 10-year $400M contract -- which is the commonly discussed Harper "ballpark deal. I returned to this analysis over the weekend and (this time) my view was the Nats SHOULD go very hard after Harper. It's a risk, but I think it's worth it.

It's a simplistic analysis, but I don't think there's a "sophisticated" analysis that's helpful either. Of the "most comparable" players to Harper at the same age in their careers, seven have finished their careers (or the age 26-through-35 portion of their careers). 

Four are among the best players ever: Frank Robinson, Hank Aaron, Miguel Cabrera and Ken Griffey, Jr. With a crystal ball, you'd give them $400M for 10 year and love it. The average WAR (Wins Above Replacement) for those four from ages 26-through-35 (OK, Miggy through 34) is 57.5! If you use FanGraphs estimate of what "1 WAR" is worth on the open free agent market -- they guess about $8.5M -- then those four players were worth close to $500M over those 10 years -- just in value through performance. That doesn't put any value on them as drawing cards who, to some extent, pay for themselves as fan magnets or players who give a franchise a national identity and lots of additional marketing possibilities.

Two others comps are Andruw Jones and Juan Gonzalez -- average WAR of 24.4. Good players. But they wouldn't have "paid you back." Finally, the "bust" is Rueben Sierra who, when he was 26, I assumed would end up in the HOF. His WAR after age 25 was 0.2! (I'm using Baseball-Reference's WAR, even though I'm using Fangraph's dollar "value" for WAR.)

The AVERAGE 10-year WAR of all seven players is 40.0. So, just in baseball value maybe that's worth a $340M contract. Granted, this is very "ballpark" but what else can you do to get your arms around it. Also, "charisma" is worth something. Harper has it. And "being a winner" has extra value. Harper hasn't got that yet, except in the sense of regular-season wins. He's been to four post-season and only, by the standards of a star, been "OK." He hasn't "taken over" a series. And he sure hasn't won one.

But, as I've said before, how many times does any franchise have a chance top get its Cal Ripken, Tony Gwynn, Stan Musial, George Brett, Aaron or (pick your own)? Do you really pass up making a hard run at the guy just because it scares you to death that he's "only" Andruw Jones or (gulp) Sierra? I change my mind on that. But (today) I'd say, "Go for it."

HOWEVER, and this is very important in answering THIS chatter's question, you can EASILY use that $400M on players OTHER than Harper. It is not a choice of Harper versus Mr. Zero. It's a choice of 10-years of Harper versus $400M to spend any way you want, assuming about $40M-a-year -- which buys at least two established stars on the FA market.

What about Rizzo?

This IS a choice between a Grade A General Manager and Mr. ???? who may be as good as Rizzo but may also be a bust.

The BALANCE is utterly different than the Harper "case study."

Remember, in Rizzo you are getting a GM that you KNOW is really, really outstanding -- and outstanding in YOUR market, with YOUR budget and YOUR (sometimes difficult) ownership, as well as having excellent working relationships with your current players, staff, scouts, front office and every body else in your franchise.

Boiled down, Rizzo isn't "worth more" than Harper, but if, in your hypothetical, you could only sign one of them, it's a fair assumption that for $400M you could sign players who were -- over the next 10 years -- perhaps 70-to-110 percent as valuable as Harper. But if you lose Rizzo, it's very hard to get a GM that good -- there may only be a half-dozen. And NONE may be available.  Also, there can be a franchise-wide unraveling when an outstanding team builder leaves. The pattern is: A few years later a lot of the key people he brought into the organization are gone, too. Not necessarily to follow him. But just gone. Maybe in part because the team wasn't smart enough to keep a top GM when it had one in hand -- and one who, in Rizzo's case, would MUCH, MUCH prefer to stay in D.C.

What odds do you put on Foles being the 'skins starting QB next year, having signed a 5-year $120-million contract?

Just so it isn't Baker Mayfield -- who is now mentioned in several mock drafts as a most-likely Skins first-round draft pick at No. 13 overall.

I'm a Mayfield fan -- as a college player/leader/character. But every time I look at him I see a classic Heisman Trophy Winner bust -- Manziel just the latest.

It's rare that I would strongly disagree with someone in football as respected as Scot McCloughan on TWO important QB evaluations. Why? Because there'd be such an excellent chance that I'd be very wrong on one or both. But it's also quite a bit of fun to have strong views that are 180-degrees off from his.

Scot says he "doesn't see special" in Kirk Cousins. And instead, in a recent interview, Scot made it clear that he thought it was the Skins team that HE had helped assemble AROUND Cousins that brought out his abilities and made some in the NFL think that Cousins WAS a special QB. 

Hmmmm. Kind of self-serving. But doesn't mean he's wrong. However, it gives a fresh layer of bright paint to "How do YOU like ME now?" plus a Cousins rubbing of the top of Scot's head.

My view is that, if you add up all three Skins teams that Cousins started for, they constituted a decent, but slightly below average NFL roster. I think he did more to help they be 24-23-1 than they did to help him have the sixth-best QB rating in the NFL in those three years.

Scot sees a lot of Russell Wilson in Mayfield. What I see is that Mayfield NEEDS to be as fast and elusive as Wilson to be effective in the NFL but Mayfield just lacks the speed to do it. To me, Wilson is the QB who drives the other team crazy because he almost always gets away on busted plays to break your heart, but Mayfield will, in the NFL, be the QB who breaks his own team's heart because he just can't get away often enough to justify his wild-rise style.

We'll see. Cousins and Mayfield are going to playing SOMEWHERE in the NFL next year and in '19. By then, we'll know. We WILL get answers.

So, be sure to remind me if I am wrong on both counts.

I'm a lifelong and loyal Bullets/Wizards fan, and I'm quickly losing faith in John Wall and Bradley Beal. That is, I think they are very good players, but will never be great, championship-winning players. If the Wiz lack effort against lesser teams, what does that say about their leadership? What does that say about their lack of defensive skill? When the Wiz play low-IQ, isolation basketball (particularly in the 4th quarter), how does that not fall on Wall? Throw in the fact that Wall still commits too many turnovers (his assist-to-turnover ratio is a pedestrian 2.63) and he continues to be a very inefficient scorer (yet takes more shots than anyone except Beal), and I think they get too much of a pass for the Wizards chronic under-performance.

I don't think the Wiz under-perform REALISTIC expectations. They're about as good as they ought to be, imo.

Almost every hoops fan in D.C. WISHES this was a great team, or near-great. But, imo, it isn't and shouldn't be expected to hit that Top Four type target. Wall and Beal are very good, but they are not THAT good. They are not in the Top 20 players in the NBA and more like lingering around the edges of the Top 30. Porter is a good glue piece, when he's playing well and is healthy, but he hasn't been either for many weeks. Oubre has energy but it still raw. The rest of the team is mundane. Not bad. But doesn't add much. 

If anything, Washington has been without an excellent NBA team for so long, and wants one so desperately, that it's been really tough for the fan base and media to praise what we have -- which is quite a bit and enjoyable -- while not getting carried away, and then disappointed.

I apologize in advance for resorting to facts to make a point. But the NBA is now one of the sports that you really can't get a handle on without referring to some of the modern stats. You can bet that all the best teams, like the Warriors, Spurs and Rockets do.

To cut to the chase, no Wizard rises into the Top 20 in any of the important ALL-AROUND advanced stats. Wall ranks high in assists. Porter is one of the leading three-point shooters. But in stats like Player Efficiency Rating, Wins Shares, Box Score Plus-Minus and VORP (Value Over Replacement Player), no Wiz is in the Top 20 and none is particularly close. ALL of these stats, some of which include defense, can't ALL be wrong by such wide margins. There is useful info here.

The Top 20 in PER (which mostly measures offense) goes from Harden at the top (29.8), followed closely by Giannis A and LeBron to Damian Lillard at No. 20 (23.1). The league average every year in this stat is always set at 15.0.

The top Wizards in PER are Wall (19.9) and Beal (19.7) which is to be expected because shooting (in volume), scoring, assists -- everything but defense -- is part of PER. Yet even with that advantage they are not CLOSE to the Top 20.

In Wins Shares, Harden is No. 1 at 8.1 so far with the 20th spot at 5.2. The best Wizards are Beal (4.6), Porter, even after his slump) (4.3), Gortat (3.3), Oubre (3.1) and Wall (2.7).

Box Score Plus/Minus goes from Harden (9.8) down to Tyreke Evans at No. 20 at 3.9. Where are the Wiz? Porter is at 3.3. The rest are awful (if you nthink they are supposed to be wonderful NBA players) -- Beal (1.8), Wall (1.8), Gortat (1.3).

In VORP, LaBron leads at 4.8 with Draymond Green 20th at 2.1. Again, where are the Wiz? Not close, not that good All-Around. Porter, whose defense is good at 1.8, then Beal 1.6, Wall 1.2 and Gortat 0.9.

The point isn't to analyze what each stat measures. Good Lord, that would take all week. But they, and have been in recent years, respected NBA stats. NO Wizard players shows up in the Top 25 in ANY of them.

So, remind me again why 26-20 is such an awful record for a team with this level of talent?

The Wiz problem, in part, is that they tend to believe the hype around them. So, they don't apparently think that they have to "get up" and play their best, most energized games against bad teams. So they have a horrible embarrassing record against losing teams this year. That drive coach Scott Brooks crazy. He can't come out and say, "We're not good enough to play it this cool and still beat bad teams." But I think I hear it "between the lines" of his comments.

This syndrome has even led to the recent Bad Team Meeting where an "airing out" of true feelings by one and all seems to have led to some players just shutting down and not joining the Maoist Self-Criticism Session. Ouch!

For those who can endure reading it, here's our story.

To repeat, Wall is an amazing penetrator and passer. But he's always had plenty of turnovers, tends to monopolize the ball, especially at the end of periods and end of game. His defense can be spectacular with blocked shots on the break and steals, but his tenacoity night-to-night varies. Maybe his body, from being slammed to the ground so much on drives, has to take some rests during the game. Beal is a wonderful shooter. He is also....I'm sure he must be something else, too, besides a real good guy, but I seldom find it. He's a pretty-good rebounding guard.

To get the most out of Wall and Beal, they HAVE to have the ball in their hands a TON. They're "usage percenatge" -- the number of possessions per 100 and end with them taking a shot, making an assist or a turnover -- are quite high at 29.0 and 28.4. Yet among the seven Wiz players who get the most minutes, Beal and Wall are NOT the best shooters on the team. In effective shooting percenatge -- combing two-point ands three-point shots -- they rank fifth and seventh among those seven Wizards in eFG%. And Wall's eFG% of .463 is really poor.

The Wiz leaders in eFG% are Scott (.656!), Porter (.564) and then Oubre and Gortat at .540. But who shoots the biggest shots in the last four minutes. It ain't usually those guys. So, it's not a group with a natural internal sync. The best percentage shooters are NOT the guys who can create their own shot but rather are players who NEED a Wall to own the ball and a Beal to take tons of shots and take pressure and attention off them.   

I didn't say I had solutions. But I may have a handle on some problems. But then it's always easier to be the critic (me) than the creator (them).

I get it, but why - why have them, what if they don't go as expected, what is discussed (from whatever you are aware of)?

Any time players want to have a meeting, let 'em have one.

If it works, good. If it doesn't, maybe they'll stop having the darn things.

The issue is when coaches or managers have Big Meetings. They better work! 'Cause if you keep losing what is your NEXT trick going to be?

Long ago, Edward Bennett Williams owned the Orioles and, in Boston, told Earl Weaver that he, EBW, wanted to have a team meeting (since he was one of the great courtroom orators). Earl begged him not to do it. But he did. The O's won that day. Earl was relieved and told the press later that calling meetings was trciky in baseball because it was so hard to know who would win the next game or why they would win it. So, we asked him, "Earl, when do YOU have meetings."

Earl said that he had as few of them as possible but "usually when Jim Palmer is gonna pitch the next game."

Cynical Earl snort/laugh. But he had a point.  

Those people are the worst people on the planet.

I believe you have mistaken the word "people" for the word "fans."

After Bob Nightingale’s article it’s what a 3% chance the Lerners sign him, right?

We've been writing about this issue forever. But Rizzo did have one quote in that story about being appreciated at the same level as other similar GMs which sounded like a Dusty Baker quote to the Post last season about not feeling appreciated/compensated appropriately. That didn't go over well, or end well. But, in this case, I don't think it's predictive.

First guy to congratulate Tom Brady was NFL referee Clete Blakeman. And they only called one penalty on the Patriots all game. And if you ever want to get a team back into the game, just start calling pass interference on every long pass. I rest my case.

Weak case.

Blakeman was one of the refs who measured the air pressure in the football at halftime of the '15 AFC Championship game that led to Deflategate. So, he'd be an odd zebra to include in your conspiracy theory. Also, it looked to me like Blakeman might have intended his elbow in the ribs and (what appeared to be) "Good game" in the context of no-hard-feelings about that game a few years ago. Or maybe it was just respect for the G.O.A.T.

I had no problem with the penalties on the Jags. And I was pulling for them most of the way. (By the end you just had to shack your head and give the Pats there due -- again.) Obviously, the penalty on Church for KOing Gronk was correct. The huge "delay of game" penalty -- after a Jags time out -- with 2:19 left in 2Q was correct. You could see at the bottom of the screen that the clock hit 0:00 a clear half-second before the snag; that negated a 12-yard pass by the Jags to the NW 32-yard line. That penalty was part of the Jags getting "0" points out of that drive.

There'll be debate of the 32-yard pass interference penalty on the next play after the Gronk KO, there was a hint of "make up call" running through my head. And it immediately set up the Pats TD to cut the Jags lead to 14-10.

But I replayed it, and slowed it down, a few times. It's hard to see on TV at first, but the Jags DB does not run in a straight line down the sideline. The throw is to the INSIDE as the receiver and DB run together, hand-checking, down the sideline. But the DB, who is two YARDS inside the line at the 20-yard line is right ON the sideline by the time the ball lands. In other words, he VEERS toward the sideline, essentially screening and shoving the Pats receiver AWAY from where the ball is going to land. That's enough for me to say, "Decent call. Not right, not wrong. But not a problem." And the previous play -- when its a helmet-to-helmet with such big consequences -- does tend to linger in everybody's semi-conscious mind.

The play that bothered me was the amazing Jack strip-recovery early in the 4Q. As it was happening, and Jack was running full speed with a 100 percent chance to score a TD, I yelled, "NOO! Don't blow the freakin' play DEAD." 

It's not a "conspiracy" call. It's instantaneous. But, jez, if even I see it in real time I'd hope the officials would.

If there is no whistle -- and replay shows that there should not have been -- there is no question WHATSOEVER that Jack scores easily. If the Jags kick the PAT, it's 27-10 -- a THREE score game -- in the fourth quarter (13:37) and it says here that The Pats Don't Win.

The Pats usually make their own luck. But not that time.

STILL, the Brady comeback, and ALL the Danny Amendola plays, were so wonderful that I prefer that it came out the way it did. I watched the 4Q again. AMENDOLA had as great sequence of DIFFERENT crucial clutch plays as you will ever see for such stakes in the last quarter. 

It was Amendola who took the long (overhand) lateral from Brady, then took SEVEN stutter steps forward, to deke the defense, then threw accurately all the way back across the field for a 20-yard gain on the play that ended with the Jack strip-recovery. Jack's gem makes you forget that the Amendola throw was almost a brilliant trick-play TD pass. How many passes had Amendola thrown before in his whole NFL career? One. In '15 for a 36-yard gain.

Amendola made the curl-up-like-a-ball rolling catch on third and 18 in the fourth quarter that Brady called the "key" play of the game. Then, as the drive continued, Amendola made a leaping glue-on-my-fingers catch over the middle, followed by his red-zone TD catch-and-run to make it 20-17. Of course, he had the 20-yard punt return to set up the winning drive. But just BEFORE his game-winning catch, leaping in the back of the endzone, turning his 5-foot-11 self into 6-4, Amendola also made a diving, rolling catch inside the Jags' 10-yard line. 

How come these guys play like this -- especially in the clutch --as soon as they get to New England?

Who was saying "Thanks" to Belichick after the game, after Belichick had thanked him first, but ex-Skins locker room leader Rickie Jean Francois. And who was in on two key late sacks but James Harrison that (we) cynics though the Pats had only picked up two weeks ago after the Steelers let him  go so that they could "de-breif" him (like a spy movie) about Pittsburgh's strategy.

What's the latest news on Werth's baseball future? Could you see him being a future coach, manager, or color commentator like Ray Knight?

I've asked him about managing, because I thought he might be very good. He reacted like I'd stuck him with a pen knife. He wants to play forever. I hope get to continue playing at all.

If this were the NFL, Belichick would ALREADY have signed Werth.

Out of curiosity, wondering who Washington fans will be rooting for come Super Bowl Sunday.

The Eagles might be the only team that could make 51 percent of Skins fans root for the Pats.

Watching the Pats again this morning I realized (again) that NOTHING helps you win in the present more than already having won in the past. And, also, that few things inhibit you, haunt you and hinder you from winning in the present like never having won in the past.

Jack Nicklaus said that the most fortunate thing that ever happened to him in his whole career was that "I won the U.S. open when I was 21." So he never had to deal with "when will you win the big one?" He'd already won the biggest, for an American. So, in a sense, he played "free" his whole career.

I admit that I resent that the Patriots have made more clutch plays, and refused to choke or make mistakes under the greatest pressure, and shown that champions really can rise to the moment, more in the last 18 years than all the Washington teams in all the sports I've watched in my whole life. And that includes SEVERAL titles by D.C. teams. But the Pats alone top all of them combined for clutch nerves and the mystique that surrounds such teams. But that I'm BITTER! 

How can a died-in-the-wool Capitals fan even WATCH the Patriots play?

Hi Boz, Don't you think the Eagles are being seriously underrated? Even without Wentz, or without Foles having another game like yesterday's, that defense looks like it can play with anyone--maybe even TB12, with all the pressure their front four creates up the gut. What's your take?

It's never "over" before it starts.

But this is close.

When Belichick glanced at the LeMar Hunt Trophy and practically spit on it before quickly handing it to Kraft's son it was like, "I pity whoever wins that Vikings-Eagles game."

Last week in this chat I said that I thought the Jags would be a really tough test for the Pats but that I couldn't pick against Brady in Brady-Keenum. It'd be even tougher to go against Brady-Foles. Especially after Foles had the game of his life, plus the lives of several other QBs.

Foles lived off that run-pass option play all day where he rides the back toward the hole, then decides whether to pull it out and throw a quick pass in 1.5 seconds. It's a wonderful basic play design. But I think the Pats will come up with six different looks to disguise how they plan to defend it.

I know, I know, if Doug Williams, a backup that year, like Foles, can put up 35 points in one quarter in the Super Bowl, it's crazy to pretend that anybody knows what'll happen. It's always more fun to "let 'em play" rather watch everything through the prism of your own irrelevant prediction.

But this is the team that trailed the Falcons and Matt Ryan 28-3 and won in OT. The only other team I've seen that has a mystique comparable to Brady-Belichick was Red Auerbach-Bill Russell when they won 11 NBA titles in 13 years. And ripped the heart out of Wilt Chamberlain, no matter who they assembled around him, and the West-Baylor combo, too, even when Wilt joined them in L.A.

We're watching something almost unique. Especially with Brady at 40 pretending he's 30.    

I remember as a kid hating on the GB Packers because Lombardi et al were always champions, were always dominant, and seemed to consistently play their own game rather than adjusting to their opponent. So now that we are watching another dynasty, I think the "I'm so sick of Brady and the Pats" crowd ought to relax and appreciate what they're seeing. Twenty years from now we will be remembering them with admiration. And I have no dog in this fight as a long-time (though my patience is running very thin) Redskin fan.

Agree. Well put. Appreciate it.

(I bet there were trolls 500 years ago who kept saying, "Paining, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, history, cartography and he invents the parachute, the helicopter and the tank, too? I'm just so sick and tired of Leonardo da Vinci being the best at EVERYTHING."

What's going to stop a pitcher from just stepping off the rubber if the clock is close to 0?

"Ball one."

By keeping Colt on the bench all year, didn't the 'SKins basically ruin anything he could've done for them, be it for the 'Skins or for someone else in a trade? Why would anyone see any value in him with virtually no snaps in games all year?

Holding a clip board is the greatest job in sports. Until they tell you to put it down and put on your helmet.

If Foles had gotten hurt yesterday, the Eagles back-up QB was, and will be for the Super Bowl, ex-Skin Nate Sudfeld. He's thrown 23 passes in his NFL career, all this year. Everybody will (correctly) put their hands over their eyes if he has to come into the Super Bowl. But he did complete 19 of 'em.

You didn't really answer the OP's question about Foles. It was more an anti-Mayfield response. With Foles playing well, he probably won't want to sit on the bench behind Wentz next year. He'll be in demand, unless he implodes at the Super Bowl. Do you think the Skins will go after him, and should they?

He might be as good as they can end up doing.

He's been pretty good when surrounded by pretty good teams -- 18-10. But when he got to start 11 games with the '15 Rams, he was 4-7 with a 69.0 QB rating.

My head already hurts at the idea of discussing "if not Cousins, then" for the next X months.

Is that you Chief Z? Can't blame the guy.

Don't know about that. But I'm about to go on some vacation and become Tom Zzzzzzzzzzz.

Thanks for all your questions and enthusiasm. Probably see you next when the dateline says: West Palm Beach. Cheers.

In This Chat
Thomas Boswell
A Washington Post columnist since 1984, Thomas Boswell is known for the many books he has written on baseball, including "How Life Imitates the World Series" and "Why Time Begins on Opening Day."
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