Redskins-Eagles postgame chat with Cindy Boren

Jan 01, 2012

Post blogger Cindy Boren will host a live discussion about the Redskins vs. Eagles game shortly after it ends Sunday.

Hi everybody -- a very happy new year to you. 5-11 is officially in the books and it's on to the offseason jabber. Lots to talk about. What are your thoughts about drafting a quarterback? Which players and coaches should stay, which should go? Let's discuss.

I know the redskins have asked fans to be patient but when this franchise keeps making money and we keep getting a bad product on the field . Will next year be the make or break year for the Shanahans

I know that Shanahan thinks it's a five-year deal, but if they don't get a good quarterback in the draft and don't improve in key areas, it's going to get very, very ugly for them. I cannot imagine they won't pursue a quarterback...I'm a prudent person -- I think you know that -- but I would trade the next 473 draft picks for, say, RGIII. Or whomever. They have to do what it takes to get a QB, even if it means turning the clock back to the crazy days.

I don't care what Shanahan et al want us to believe, I have no confidence this team is going anywhere anytime soon. Dang.

It depends on the draft. They must get a QB, get help on the line and secondary. I am somewhat troubled by Shanahan's admission that things were worse than he thought. He's the guy who's in charge of personnel. He should know. So I'm not quite filled with warm feelings of optimism, but you have to give it another year.

Who insists the Terps are also headed in the right direction. That makes what Shannmy is saying sound not quite as ludicrous.

I hope Santa brought both of them a GPS.

What a difference a new young QB & big strong receiver would make. Pudgy Rex lofting balls way up in the air, skinny little Anthony Armstrong no chance to go up and get it. Watch Drew Brees pass and imagine "what if?"

Whoa -- breathe into a brown paper bag! Not sure they'd be putting up Brees-type numbers -- can you believe he passed for almost 5,500 yards? At least instead of "what if" you'd be saying, "I see the what's beginning to happen here." That'd be nice for a change.

It isn't just the occasional poor decision. Rex can't throw the deep ball. It always seems to float, so that the pass turns out to be something like a toss-up between receiver and defender. Kyle likes the passing game. He's got to see that Rex won't allow him to call his normal game. The only other solution I can think of is to have Rex throw 2 deep balls at the START of the game. Get the INTs out of the way. Then start to play.

You're most likely not going to have to be thinking much about Rex anymore. He might be a good enough backup here, but I don't see another season with him as the starter. I cannot FATHOM another season with him as the starter.

how can the referee miss the defender being draped over Santana Moss, when it's right in front of his face?? and then expect the player not to get ticked of ??? how about instituting a rule that it's ok for ref's to wear glasses, that way they won't have to pretend they can see

That was a horribly officiated game, but then that describes a lot of the Redskins games, doesn't it? The crummy teams get the crummy refs and the crummy announcing teams. 

Cindy: I have followed you chats all season. I still think you have been unfair to Rex Grossman. This Eagles game mirrors a big issue with him. His receivers, particularly Santana Moss, have done him few favors. In this game, Rex hit Moss right in the hands and Moss did not control the ball. The interception ball was tipped. Grossman is a better qb than he is given credit for being. If he is not on the team next year, he will be missed as we look for Mr. Right and end up, again, with Mr. Wrong.

You may well be right. I do admire the way Grossman stays in there as well as the way he stands up and answers questions all the time. You are quite right about the WRs dropping passes and let's also mention that the offensive line, because of injuries and less depth than it appeared there'd be in August, offered little protection. Losing TEs who can block hurt, too. Still, there were a ton of mistakes that were on him. There's a reason teams weren't clamoring for him. 

in view of the fact that the Eagles defenses penetrating the line, how about at least calling some rollouts. Glad this is the last game so maybe we can get a competent QB and offensive linemen, this is pathetic!!!!

This was a pretty uninspired effort by them, wasn't it? I understand, but I thought they might offer a more spirited fight against a division foe, even with nothing on the line.

In my humble opinion, the Skins D is over-rated here in DC. Yes, they're better than last year, but they rarely stop anyone when they need to: after the Skins score. They have gotta upgrade...what? the safeties? CB? NT?

An improved offense would take some of the pressure off them. They need help in the secondary. I'd address that situation in the offseason, if I were in charge. Atogwe was hurt, but sure didn't pan out well in his first season.

Moss drops a gimme TD, two non-calls for defensive pass interference that would have benefitted the Skins (one in the end zone), really stupid penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct (Stallworth after the TD & Moss taking helmet off on the field), our recivers can't catch the ball when its dropped perfectly into their bread basket and the opposition makes circus catches all the time.

I'd include interceptions and other mistakes, but I think you summed it up pretty succinctly.

Don't the Skins need to come away with at least 3 points there? Can't see the game up here, so admittedly don't know what happened, but it sounds like bad clock management by Shanny. Gotta get on the board there, right?

Good grief, yes. Grossman says he couldn't hear the call. Now, that shouldn't happen in Game 16...but it did.

Ah, feels like the Bill Murray movie. Rex hangs a long ball short, bouncing it off a defenders helmet and into the hands of another defender. Team moves the ball well until the redzone. Grossman can't avoid the rush (even for a nanosecond) and has to toss the ball away only to have the FGA blocked. Lack of talent, poor matchups, poor execution & bad play calling & stupid penalties (way to go Santana). I can't believe I'm not making this up in a half of play! When will the story change?

It had better change next September. No one wants to watch another 12 games of this. (Not including the 3-1 start...)

Posting at the end of the first half. For whatever sense of direction Shanahan thinks this team has, they sure look like a bunch of losers. (Including the coaching staff that called their final first half timeout with 1:22 left and couldn't even get off a field goal after first and goal with 26 seconds left!) Reading the philosophical musings of Shanahan this morning, it struck me that he's officially lost it. That insane drive that makes successful coaches successful is gone. He would never put up with a team that lets a practice squad receiver into the end zone after he was dead to rights, or a "star" receiver cost his team 15 yards for a nothing play when points are on the line. He would have ripped their heads off, maybe cut them on the spot. But now he's grown more mature. That's why the Skins won't win. And that's why no coach -- not Lombardi, not Shula, not Ditka, not Parcells, not Gibbs, not Seifert, not Johnson, not Holmgren, who did I miss? -- has ever come back to win a Super Bowl on the second go-round.

It's certainly possible that you are correct and I won't lie and say I've wondered the same things as well. There's something to be said for young, hungry coaches willing to work 22 hours a day because they have something to prove. It's always better to be trying to establish your reputation rather than trying to protect it. I've said numerous times that I'd have gone in a different direction after the Zorn firing, but this is what the reality is. It's not fair to write Shanahan off yet. I want to keep an open mind, but I share your concerns.

Have always believed that there is a play or two within each game where the momentum changes and the outcome is directly impacted. Today, with the run/pass ratio once again out of whack, that turning point came when the Skins had the ball first and ten at the 18 after moving down the field on a strong running game and then resorting to three straight passes ~ all incomplete. Blocked field. Good night, drive home safe. The Skins had the opportunity to physically impose their will on the Eagles and Kyle Shanahan let them off the hook with a soft passing game being a priority. Long lead in, short question: Will Kyle Shanahan ever get it? Not asking for the reincarnation of Gibbs I but don't you have to play to your strengths during each game? Today, it was the running game.

Isn't it smart to go with what's working? Until the opponent adjusts and then you have to do a little adjusting yourself.

A poor workman always lames his tools and I kind of feel like that's been the case with KShanahan all season long, whether he's actually verbalized it or not. He's certainly kept to his gameplan and just kind of thrown his hands up when it doesn't work. Face it, they're not going to get 100 percent the exact, perfect players KShanahan wants. It'll certainly be better, but it won't be perfect. Let's see him work up a plan with what he'll have.

Do we need to elevate K on the list of Skins' off-season needs? How did he miss that-the one just before the half? Gotta make those 'gimmes.' I can forgive missing the long ones, but not those. Is Gano coming back? Oh, and Happy New Year to you & yours!

Best wished for a great 2012...if there's a better kicker available, sure, go get him. I'd sure bring some other options into camp and see who can win the job.

Will the Redskins draft RG III from Baylor as our QB?

Not sure yet where they'll pick ... it's in the fourth-to-sixth range. It's quite possible that they might have to work a deal to move up for the Baylor QB/Heisman winner. I'd hope they do whatever they have to get RGIII or whomever is the best fit after the combine pageant show. 

I gave up on the Redskins the day that Steve Spurrier was hired. I've pretty much stayed away, but I tuned in today to see if there was a shred of pride left on this club. The first half told me that there is not. I know they're not going anywhere this year, but ... ANOTHER blocked kick???? (Now leading the league in that category, BTW) ... drops ... penalties (including that beaut on Moss for removing his helmet -- THERE'S a real pro) ... the fans who remain can talk about draft picks all they want, but this club is years from being or meaning anything as a football team.

You gave up three coaches ago? Wow, you've missed a lot of stuff. Sadly, though, you raise a fair point. There's a lot of work to be done with this team. 

You are closer to the scene than I, but can you explain to me why Danny Smith is still the special teams coach.He has had a very ragged record trying to produce a place kicker or kick returner. No team should have 5 kicks blocked in a 16 game season. Thank goodness tihis sorry season is finally over.

Not a stellar day/season for special teams. I would think Shanahan would take a look at special teams.

I can't believe I'm saying this, Shanahan is worse at managing the clock that Zorn and Gibbs 2.0 - When is someone going to hold his feet to the fire on this???

When a team is not playing well, sinking to a sub-.500 level, it's tough to keep your head in the game. Now, they're paying him an awful lot and he's supposed to be setting an example. Like his teams on most game days, he's better than that.

Relief, not terribly disappointed but we need 2 solid QBs (franchise, vet backup not named Rex) Ms. Cindy what do see that a lot of loyal SKINS fans don't in the NEED catagory?

Hey, Fort Hood. I don't think there's anything that isn't readily obvious. Their needs are many and glaring. Fix the big problems and the little ones won't rise up to bite you.

Texan TJ Yates is not a free agent, but would he be someone worthy of pursuit by the Redskins instead of drafting a QB?

Maybe Matt Flynn in Green Bay? (I will not point out that Jason Campbell will be a free agent.) Maybe the price for RGIII is too steep and they end up making a trade for someone like a Flynn.

Seeing how losing today helps them with the draft, was the loss a worthy one? Or does the fact it puts Shanny's win record below Zorn's a blemish he'll find hard to recover from no matter what?

It was like the broccoli of wins. Good for you ultimately but ... blecch.

Jason Campbell took a lot of stuff when he was with the Redskins. Was he better than this lot? Than McNabb?

He was not the Shanahans' kind of quarterback. Yes, his success in Oakland before being injured would indicate that he was better than this lot and McNabb, but the evaluators here did not think so. I think he needed a fresh start elsewhere...I don't think he'd ever have succeeded with the Shanahans.

That sequence just before the half (blocked FG, fumble recovery with GREAT field position, then running out of time to run the last play) said it all.

I was kind of hoping both teams would refuse to come out for the second half. "No, thanks! We're good here in the locker room!"

The end of the first half seems emblematic that this staff, from top down, is not as good as they think they are. The seeming unawareness of clock, a play being run in the middle of the field, the offense not hustling off the field, inexcusable--now they're giving the excuse the headsets went out and Montgomery thought they were going to spike it--on fourth down. Things that don't happen to good teams.

They seemed like a bunch of guys whose heads were not in the game. Over the years, when they've had losing seasons, at least they've had some heart and pride. They just weren't that into it today.

I realize that this megalomaniac has made this franchise look terrible on the football field and in press conferences and he loses em right away and brings in another crew that either works well with Bruce Allen (if he stays and if he's give the GM power), and who especially have an even-handed approach to management. The way this guy has handled players, the questionable judgments on QBs, and the nepotism that does nothing to help him, all point to troubling signs at least in my view. Your thoughts?

It's possible that this all works out and that there is wild success, a la the kind Shanahan had in Denver, here. But I won't tell you I haven't had concerns over many of the issues you've mentioned. Bruce Allen isn't that type of GM, though. If this doesn't work -- in a couple of years -- they'd have to look at bringing in the right young GM and letting him build his program and hire his coach. 

Not sure any five year plan have ever worked...last time I checked communism failed...

True. If Shanahan pounds his podium with his shoe, look out.

The Redskins should be run like a public utility, like Pepco or Verizon.

What could possibly go wrong???

I've beat this horse time after time but this should not be a five year program; going deep into the playoffs may take five years, but, and regardless of the team that Mr. Shanahan accepted when he assumed authority for everything Redskins, there is no reason that Mr. Shanahan should have posted the teams/the records he has over the past two years. While the Zorn years have been ridiculed, Jim Zorn wasn't hired to be the head coach (let alone have more authority than that, and who had, in reality, little input or decision making, to include choosing his own staff); he was hired to be a first-time offensive coordinator who was elevated to head coach for any number of reasons. Mr. Shanahan, on the other hand, was given complete autonomy because he was a "proven winner". Sorry, but Redskins fans had and have every right to expect more than what Mr. Shanahan brought to and from the club. To say, based on his "expertise, ability, etc." that it would take five years to be respectable and to have the record the team has over the past two years, is unacceptable. Next year should be THE turnaround year, and should be the fifth year, regardless of what the calendar says.

Thanks for this smart note. (BTW, I took your email address off the post, just in case it was by accident.)

So t looks like the reskins will have the 5th pick in the draft. So the question is wht will the reskins shanahn do with it? One has to assume it iwll be a qb.

Sure hope so.

I'm going to pretend that the Giants are the Redskins tonight. Will the Skins win?

I think the GintSkins will win, but this week is just a ridiculous crapshoot. And who can figure out the Cowboys?

Check the GB/Lions game - Matt Flynn 28/40, 430, 5, 1 - and the game means something to the Lions! A better option than RG3?

Sure! If, by better, you mean available at a more reasonable cost given all the other needs. I like Matt Flynn.

I'm reminded why the Redskins aren't sending anybody to the Pro-Bowl. This team is horrible......period.

5-11. Blecch.

ok , so what is the plan??? Is it rocket science ?

No, silly. It's brain surgery. Everybody knows that.

It's QBQBQBQBQB and everything else.

After the quarterback position and offensive linemen, do you agree that we are in need of a big time receiver and or tight end? Why don't the Redskins ever seem to pick up a Dez Bryant or Miles Austin or a Celek or Whitten? Where is our big play guy? We always seem to get a bunch of shrimps.

Thanks for reminding me that I have leftover shrimp from last night. Seriously!

They certainly need bigger WRs; big-time would be nice, too. They have two decent TEs in Cooley and Davis, when he's eligible. 

Even if the ref blew the call, Moss's response was inexcusable. It was second and goal from the 3 yard line if he just shut his yap and went back to the huddle. He didn't. He seems very upset at the officials lately, not getting the respect he feels he deserves. Losers blame the refs, and Moss sure does an awful lot of that.

I can't believe Moss did that. He has to be better than that. He knows better than that. And he also has to know that, with a lot of young players and guys who haven't been around all season, he has to be a leader. Guys are looking to him. Certainly he has been the victim of poor calls, but that's no excuse for costing your team yardage.

Flynn? Manning? a draft pick? What kind of assets are the Skins going to need to move to get a future Super Bowl QB?

The next 473 draft picks. And no one knows yet what kind of shape Manning is in, what he'll be able to do.

Let's not forget two very open receivers deep for sure TD's but Bad Rex underthrew them. (I didn't see the first part of the first quarter either.) The good thing? The season is mercifully over. Sheez.

Yes, there have been plenty of those Bad Rex moments.

If they don't get RGIII, what do they do? Landry Jones doesn't look like much of a first rounder. I'm not sure anyone other than the first two really are. My advice: Trade down for as many picks as they can get, and pick 3 QB's through the course of the draft. (By the way -- why is everyone so down on Kellen Moore? Is he just another Colt Brennan?)

I hate it when prudent people find their way into this chat! Let's see how these guys shape up at the combine. (And feel free to Google "Tom Brady" and "combine photo.")

i have been upset with the defense at times, but in all fairness the offense for the most part was so anemic, that it forced the defense to play way too long and mistakes set in. So i don't know how good they can be when given a reasonable amount of time on the field

The offense was on the field more than you might have thought, but they converted so poorly in the red zone that the defense was always under the gun.

This team is rotten to the core. A new QB is not going to solve 11 wins in 2 years. This team needs a new coaching staff period. Why would you even consider going with this group again? They have no clue how to play in the NFC east. You need to have strong offensive and defensive lines to win in this division. Go back and look at the past great Redskins teams. Send a message to Danny Boy. stop going to see this sad team play. If the fans don't stop paying to see these clowns then they will continue to see this rotten bunch for years to come.

No way they can fire Shanahan, keep paying him and a new coach. You're right about the power that fans have; if you don't like it, vote with your money.

There seems to be this aura of wisdom surrounding the old man, but am I crazy to think that the emperor has no clothes? He gave up two draft picks for McNabb, staked his reputation on Grossman and Beck, and now has a worse record than Jim Zorn. As far as his alleged competence, this game was truly farcical: he called his final first half timeout with 1:22 remaining, and in a keystone cops routine the team failed to kick a gimme field goal. He dawdled while the Eagles watched 6 replays of Moss not catching the ball giving them time to challenge and kill a key drive. And then in a moment of pique he challenged a *very* clear catch by Maclin for no reason. I always have to catch myself in moments like this and remember that the Redskins are a poisonous organization from the very top, and will never win with Snyder as an owner no matter who is buying the groceries or cooking the meal. But even so, what reason is there to believe that Shanahan has this under control?

I don't think you're crazy, particularly with the points you raise about QBs. As for today, clearly, Shanahan was mentally skiing in Colorado. Other than telling you that you have to give him another year, I'll point out that he did have a decent draft, that this was never going to be quickly turned around. It may well not be, but you can't switch this quickly. Like it or not.

Cindy, Matt Flynn was spectacular today and is a free agent. What sort of dollar will he command? Skins should be all over this guy and address other postions in the draft. Thoughts?

Not sure how much it would cost to get him just yet, but the Redskins are, as Kornheiser points out, an ATM. My preference would be RGIII in the draft, but if that isn't doable or is imprudent, then, sure, Flynn is in!

Danny boy certainly isn't cheap, so why don't great players want to come to play for DC??

Because they haven't been winning. For most players, for the ones you'd actually want, it's not ALL about the money. I believe there is ample evidence and I don't need to name names *cough* Haynesworth *cough*. 

Surely Fletcher, Orapko and Kerrigan deserved some love.............

There's a case to be made for Fletcher and you'd think all the double teams Orakpo saw would carry weight with voters. I can't muster much enthusiasm for anyone from a 5-11 team, tho...

By my count the Skins will have either the #6 or #7 pick. You seem to think that RG3 is good enough that they should move up to get him. Won't there be other options like Barkley and Jones? And is Griffin THAT much better? I would hate to have to give up early picks in later rounds if it's not needed to get a QB who is not much better.

Barkley is staying at USC and Jones hasn't indicated yet what he'll do. Players have until Jan. 15 to decide. 

The Skins have been very bad for very long, and they still transfix sports fans in this town. I would imagine that NFL fans everywhere else in the country have long since written off the Skins as losers -- the Cardinals or old. Yet we still talk of the Skins as the team they were under Gibbs I. Do other perennial losers have such devoted (or deluded) fans?

Well, yes, if only because teams can make quick turnarounds in the NFL and a 9-7 record can get a team into the playoffs. Look at the NFC East and the Redskins. Isn't it irritating to know that a 9-7 is going to do the trick? Makes it doubly frustrating when you feel your team just frittering ...

Maybe this has been asked before, but why oh why didn't Danny Boy give Vick a home in DC!!

There were so many factors at play many people working to find the best home for Vick. I don't think D.C., so close to home and the Bad News Kennelz, would have been the best place for him.

for providing this forum this year. It has been the only thing worthwhile in this dreadful season and I always learned a thing or two. Now, back to the train wreck. I respectfully disagree with you that Shanahan will absolutely take a QB in the draft or as a free agent. Even after today, he sang Rex' praises. I'm with you -- I like Rex as a person and can see why his teammates go to bat for him hard, but he is definitely not the answer. However, SHanahan sounds like a serious egomaniac at times and still appears to believe that Rex is the guy. It would be like SHanahan to stick with Rex just to try to prove everyone is wrong and he is right I may be in the minority but SHanahan is now 35-45 in his last 80 games, and there is no reason to believe he will suddenly become a good coach. I suppose you're right, we need to give him one more season to see if he can lose fewer than 10 games. I would be willing to put a lunch that next year we are having this same chat. And in the meantime the 7-14 year old kids in Northern Virginia will continue to mock me for rooting for the Redskins when there is a professional organization right up the road on I-95. Sigh.

Thanks for hanging out here. Love talking to youse guys! Shanahan has said that he's been evaluating QBs, so I don't find it at all contradictory that he'd say complimentary things about Grossman. I think that's typical of a guy like Shanahan. 

I don't think I'll take your lunch bet, though, because I have some pretty significant concerns, too. Hope I'm wrong.

What should continue to worry the Redskins is that every year that passes without success is another year in which the past recedes further. I know a lot of fans whose kids won't go with them to games because the Gibbs I era is so distant, so sepia-toned for them. This should keep the Redskins owner up nights. 

And I hate to tick Redskins fans off by mentioning the other team up I-95, but, they were built smartly, with a great GM in place first.

I question the wisdom of father/son coaching teams. How can a dad ream out his sun, even privately, without harming the relationship? How does he fire his son??

Oh, I quite agree. Whether it's fubball or widgets, working for Dad (or Mom) just seems incredibly difficult to me -- impossible in a public profession. 

The Rams pick RGIII and trade Bradford to the Skins. He refuses to report to a team named "Redskins" and holds out until Snyder changes the name. What happens next? I don't know and I don't care. I would just enjoy watching that.

You aren't the first to put forth this scenario -- someone else did it on Twitter. Bradford had said, back when the Redskins were checking him out before the draft, that he was okay with the nickname. I don't think that that has changed.

thankfully the season is over; this team is so over-covered in the media, it's ridiculous. the caps and nats deserve much more coverage from the Post especially, and both deserve more prominent space on the sports front page. Look at the last two days: the Caps game was in the lower part of the opening sports page both times, while Redskin coverage was at the top.

Well, you'll get your wish now. ;) 

(I would argue that Redskins belonged at the top of the page going into the season finale, btw...)

At any rate, I must reluctantly sign off now. I can't thank you enough for joining me all season, and can't tell you how much I've enjoyed blabbing with you. I hope we can continue the conversation on Twitter and on The Early Lead. This is really only getting started; as you well know, this is when the season really begins! Next stop: the combine. Next stop after that: free agency. Have a great 2012!

In This Chat
Cindy Boren
Cindy Boren blogs for The Early Lead and has edited Redskins and NFL coverage for the Post. Follow her at @cindyboren on Twitter.
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