The Washington Post

Dec 27, 2010

Every morning, Post columnist Tracee Hamilton discusses the most amazing and outrageous news from the world of sports.

Hi there! I'm pulling spot duty today on FTF -- I'm always happy when I get a chance to hang out here, so let's get going. There's lots to discuss...Caps, Wiz, Redskins, McNabb...

I don't know if this is the right place to address this, but I'll try. I would just like to see the score of games above the headlines or earlier in the stories about games. It sometimes seems to take forever in the article to get to the score, which is the most basic information about the game. One example would be the article about last night's Wiz game. Thanks!

Thanks for the feed back. This is as good a place as any to address these matters. I'll make sure the Matts (Vita and Rennie, our sports poohbahs) see this comment.

Can someone put a rag in McNabb's agent's mouth? He's a nobody. McNabb couldn't succeed in Philly without TO and/or Brian Westbrook. Philly is better off this season without him. Even Desean Jackson had parting words for McNabb. McNabb is a nice guy, but he tried to mold himself into a pocket passer as his athleticism has deteriorated. Clearly, it hasn't worked, so when a coach asks him to play pocket passer, and he fails, who's fault is that?

Actually, I think Fletcher A. Smith is just doing his job. I don't think he's really just running wild here, saying stuff. Honestly, I want to put all of these people in a room, hook 'em up to lie detectors and find out what's true and what isn't.


I think a clear message was sent to you yesterday by the unknowns, has-beens and wanna-bes who make small salaries. They played their hearts out for the team and the win yesterday. They also made a statement regarding high rent district players about not just cashing your big checks and not playing 120% every week. A huge payroll does not guarantee automatic wins and playoff appearances.

Granted, they were helped by the absence of Maurice Jones-Drew and the fact that the Jax D isn't great, but I agree. Same reason I like small, independent films with casts who are passing up a paycheck to be involved. I'm not sure that football approach squares with the owner's goals and what he perceives to be image of his team, though.

Is it me, or does Haslett look beaten down on the sidelines? The crazy man who used to exude aggression, possibly in his sleep as well as in his waking moments, now just looks exasperated -- pretty much all the time.

I think he has a case of the Week 16 blues. I noticed that, too, and figured that, just as it isn't easy for players to amp up for meaningless games, it can't be easy for him either. And it's been a pretty taxing year for him. Usually, coordinators aren't lightning rods. Here they are.

Yesterday you said, “ I don't think Rex necessarily presented a compelling case for himself today, do you?” I say neither this week or last week impressed me. Four Tds with 3 Ints which actually cost us the game did not impress. As a serviceable QB then he would barely make the grade. He should/could be the QB for 2011 while they upgrade everywhere else. There are just too many holes to fill to go out and get a franchise QB and let him get pummeled like Bert Jones (Colts ‘73-‘81 with like 93 Ints). He might have been the original Payton Manning.

I don't have high hopes for Grossman; he wasn't stellar against two middling defenses. Let's see what he does against the Giants (to be fair, they're something of a mess; Redskins ought to win). I do think you raise a fair point: he may well be their choice for a bridge-to-the-future QB. Maybe you can find one with a later pick and use the first-rounder on another spot.

Funny. Wilbon thinks Snyder is a bad owner. Really? How's his friend MJ working out as an owner down there in NC?

Wilbon will also be the first to tell you that McNabb is a friend of his, too.

Redskins are on a roll. What seed do you think we'll get in the playoffs? Can we get a home game?

This is just a suggestion: It's time to stop drinking the egg nog.

Did you know that there are now ELEVEN teams with fewer wins than the Skins, INCLUDING DALLAS! WAHOO! We have achieved mediocrity! Even better to come next year! Right?

So ... you're staying medium?

What is roughly the percentage chances that every word spoken by McNabb's agent came from McNabb? 100? The Shanahan's know McNabb's full of it, right?

Again, at this point, I throw up my hands. Somebody, everybody is not being stand-up here and it's difficult to tell. We should hire linguistics/body English/lie detector experts to figure it out.

Of course I'm happy with thge Redskins w in, but I'm also just so frustrated. Another wasted season. Would love to know why Shanahan traded for McNabb and why he gave him the extention. Grossman has been better than exected bug is a journeyman QB at best. Every time we get excited about a new regime, things crash. Oh well, I guess we could be Cubs fans,

Did Shanahan just get bamboozled on McNabb? Did his ego cause him to think he could bring McNabb around? Is the problem that Kyle doesn't like McNabb? (As a Cardinals fan, I chuckled at the Cubs remark.)

Was wondering if you had any comments/thoughts on the difference between the Redskins and Capitals when things seem to begin going badly during the season. Couldn't help but notice the small changes the Capitals made without panicking while small miscues cause wholesale roster changes in asburn.

It's easier to tweak an NHL team because it's a longer season...a few changes here and there and all but, what, two teams make the playoffs. The Caps roster is in far, far better shape than the Redskins overall and there's been stability in the franchise for years. You might not always agree with McPhee's moves, but there is stability.

Do you expect him to get some playing time next week?

Gee, I hope so. Maybe the Shanahans feel they don't need to see what he's got. I'd like to see him, though. That'd give us some fresh stuff to consider.

(I can't believe we're at Week 17. Love the NFL regular season and hated the taste of life without it that I got last night when Eagles-Vikings was ppd. "The Sound of Music" was delightful.)


The Giants are more of a mess than the Redskins?

Nope. Sorry, they're not. The problem with the Giants is that they're like the two-face that Jerry dated on Seinfeld. They can look completely different -- often on the same play -- but they have more talent than the Redskins overall.

I don't get around too well but have retired to Penn Quarter, w/in walking distance of the Verizon Center. I spent a major chunk of my entertainment budget on Wizartds and Caps season tickets, and have seen all but one of each eam's home games. I still think the Caps have hope, though that's getting harder to sustain. The Wiuzards should give refunds! Maye Leonsis now has too much on his plate? I'm having trouble getting my grandsons, who are avid sports fans, to use my second ticket for their games.

I'd hold onto those Wizards tickets if I were you. I have great hopes for John Wall. The Caps need to advance farther into the playoffs this year.

Why is it that these special characters show up in the answers?

I don't know. I want to take a polo mallet to this app.

I hope Cooley doesn't have any small children at home.

Am guessing there are a lot of pot shards at his house.

True or False: Donovan McNabb will throw more bounce passes than John Wall this year?

I'm going to go with True.

While I was happy to watch yesterday as "All the Whos down in Whoville" (aka Redskin Park) bring home a win, I must confess to being nervous every time Turnoversaurus Rex takes a snap. It's just like a car crash waiting to happen. You knew it was going to be a strange day when Carlos Rogers caught an interception. Truly, this must be a sign of the End Times.

Turnoversaurus Rex. Oh, my, I heart that.

Don't know if you can fit this in, but I h ave 3 teenagers who will hopefully play college sports and there's no way I want any of them playing for Mike Leach. They include a junior on a local HS powerhouse whose coach feels the same say, saying he'll do what he can to dissuade his players from going to UMDd if Leach is named the coach. We can't be the only ones who feel this way, either.

Interesting. I can understand where you're coming from.

This is why the Patriots are good year after year. They make it work without a bunch of prima donnas. I know, they had Randy Moss for a couple years, but basically it's a team effort. The coach gets rid of people who don't understand the concept of team. Remember Terry Glenn?

Bill Parcells remembers her. The Pats are also great because, among other things, look at the draft they had last year. I told someone afterward that I thought they'd won a Super Bowl berth with the people they picked up.

for the longest time I have bugged my wife about her devotion to her two soap operas every day. May I borrow one of your answers? "Did Shanahan just get bamboozled on McNabb? Did his ego cause him to think he could bring McNabb around? Is the problem that Kyle doesn't like McNabb?" Stay tuned to the next season of "AS THE STOMACH TURNS"

Wow, you're right. It did sound like a teaser, didn't it?

The Skins have six picks in seven rounds while the current #1 team in the NFL, New England, has six picks in the first three rounds. I think the Skins GM's and coaches have the misconception that Skins fans won't accept building through the draft and possibly taking a year or two to rebuild. KC and TB have adopted that approach and appear to be on the upswing. While I believe the fans may accept a rebuild, it could be that Danny can't live without impulse buying and the concept of rebuilding seems like failure.

I think there's an image disconnect. The Redskins need to reload and rebuild like a non-marquee franchise. If you have an unrealistic perception of your franchise (sure, it's worth a boatload), you're always going to think you're  closer than you are.

Did the Redskins sign McNabb to the extension: 1) in case they wanted to keep him or 2) so they could trade him if it didn't work out. Why did McNabb sign the extension? Because he thought he would retire here? Surely the Redskins won't just release McNabb -- unless no other team wants him (or lays back until the Redskins have to release or pay him).

Yet another question for the day when they're all locked in a room and hooked up to lie detectors.

I'll just put it out there: Odds that the Shannies are one and done, and The Danny launches an all out blitz for Cowher?

No. Just no. I don't think so. Besides, Cowher can have his pick.

You shouldn't be lecturing on eggnogg abuse.

Yeah, I know. That sounded kinda goofy even to me.

I think that yesterday's game was proof that NFL fans root for the uniforms; there's no way that anyone outside of immediate families knew much of anything about all those new faces! In the tradition of nicknames such at The Fun Bunch, The Hogs and others, these guys deserve their own brand name...if not All The Whos in Whoville, why not Someone and the Somebodies ( an 80s Boston band reference), Unnamed Sources, or Nameless Faceless Bureaucrats,....c'mon work with me here.....

How about the Dudes?

We've heard she'd scratch the eyes out of a couger to protect her writers, but is prone to tirades, and is generally feared, yet respected. Any hilarious stories?

She killed a guy one time and that's a fact.

Such as apple-pomegranate martinis? Delicious or gimicky?

I had pear saki that was wonderful a couple of times (I had several and let's just say they sneaked up on me). Generally speaking, I prefer unadorned spirits -- Crown Royal with a splash of water.

The correct term usage here is "drinking the kool-ade"

Not over the holidays. The Kool-Aid season begins the day after the Super Bowl.

Hi Cindy. Has Tracee ever invited you to tour any Kansas-based cemetaries in search of ghosts? If so, would you go? Also, what makes Kornheiser so festively orange?

I think that would creep me out, so I'd just hang out at Modell's looking for Chiefs merch while she did the cemetery thing. Kornheiser is orange because -- I'm about to reveal his secret -- he eats more carrots than Bugs Bunny. Someone told him they'd make his hair grow.

Not every team has the front office personnel in place to draft well. Look at the Matt Millen Lions, who drafted 4 WRs with #1 picks. And the 49ers and Bills have been trying to build through the draft for what, 5+ years now? The Redskins don't have anywhere near the smarts in the front office that the Patriots do (who does, really?).

The Lions and Rams, for their dismal recent pasts, are in nice shape for next season. Same with the Chiefs and Bucs, who are farther along in the process.  I would love to know what the offseason plan is for the Redskins. We won't until we're deep into it.

Cindy, is it me or are the Wiz one of the most dysfunctional teams in the NBA? I love them to death (born and raised DC. Won their Championship my Sr Year in HS), but come on. And first the Team comes out and says "It was only a disagreement". Then they say "Oops. Guess it was a fight. We're suspending them". I only wish Baby Blatche and Can't Keep it Under Control Magee would fight HALF as hard on the court. Sheesh!

Wish this team would just flat out play ball and stay home  and tweet or something. Aggression belongs on the court.

Eek, I have to move along now. Thanks, as always, for joining me. I'll be posting on The Early Lead and tweeting (@CindyBoren), so hit me up on either place to continue the conversation.  Talk to you Sunday night!

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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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