A Burgundy and Gold Obsession
Game 12 - Philly. No biggie. Just a season in the balance ...

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  1. #1
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    Default Maybe Papa Shannahan Really Is The Problem

    Let me first start by saying I still believe Mike Shannahan should stay another year or two regardless of the outcome this and next season. I must also say that I have always been a Mike Shannahan fan. You can count me among those who believe, or possibly believed (after my latest revelation), that daddy's son Kyle is and will continue to be the problem in Washington. After a little thinking and searching, I'm not so sure that's entirely true anymore.

    For those who didn't hear it, or read Boone's quotes post, this is a recent quote from coach:
    “Like I said, I believe in both these quarterbacks. I’ve got to give them the right supporting cast. That’s my job and I’m going to get the right supporting cast for both guys to get the job done. It’s my job to give them the type of supporting cast surrounding them that can give them a chance to be successful… If you believe in people, you put your reputation on people. And I understand there are going to be some growing pains, as I said from the beginning, but I’ve got to give them the right supporting cast. If I do that, I feel very good about our guys.”
    Yes, he actually said that. The sad part is, if you listened to it you can tell he truly believes that. Could it be that our QBs are valuable to this franchise, and it's the rest of the team dragging us down? Abso****inglutely not. For him to have this thought, much less say it, shows me that his mind isn't as well developed as we were all duped into believing.

    This got me wondering exactly who is the bigger problem between father and son, so I started with Mike's draft history. QBs in particular, to see how well his eye for QB talent is. In his career as a head coach, here are the QBs he drafted.....

    Jeff Francis - 0 career TDs, 0-1 as a starter.
    Jeff Lewis - 0 career TDs, 0 starts.
    Brian Griese - Widely considered below average to mediocre, but serviceable.
    Jarious Jackson - 0 career TDs, 0-1 as a starter.
    Matt Mauck - 0 career TDs, 0-1 as a starter.
    Bradlee Van Pelt - never started, scored 1 TD as a rusher.
    Jay Cutler - Turnover machine, but semi productive/slightly above middle.

    Based on the evidence, he is well below average as a QB talent scout. So if he was to draft a QB, it's almost a certainty that QB would stink up the joint. Yet, he took it one step further and put to rest any doubts about his eye for QB talent when he staked his reputation on the talent of Rex Grossman and John Beck.

    So I began to look at his ability to draft other positions. To call his ability to draft a supporting cast atrocious would be a disservice to horrible coaches and talent scouts everywhere. You have likely never heard of anyone he's ever drafted, outside of a few players you can count on one hand aside from the RB position. Based on his RB drafting history, that appears to be the only position he has an eye for talent with. Terell Davis, Clinton Portis, Ryan Torain, Peyton Hillis and Roy Helu were all hand picked by Mike Shannahan.

    So you throw out Mike's ability to draft talent, and you're left with what we've got. Two mediocre QBs, who he currently has no intention of replacing (or ability to given his track record). You also then have to consider where the problem lies. We all can agree that he gives Kyle way too much of a leash. To his credit, he tried hard to talk Kyle out of coming here, it's just a sham he wasn't successful. Kyle has ruined us where his father was chipping away. The playcalling is horrendous, and Kyle is as easy to read as a large print children's book for an opposing defensive coach. He never mixes it up, and nearly every snap can be seen coming a mile away for exactly the play it is. If we're down by so much as a point in the second half, the RB practically rides the pine as we go into all pass mode, with an inept QB and WR still new and learning. All this while we have perfectly capable RB watching plays collapse as they don't get the ball.

    So, is Kyle Shannahan the reason our season is going down the toilet? Absolutely, without question. Is Mike Shannahan also the reason? Absolutely, also without question. We're stuck in a lose-lose situation with one coach who is never reigned in because daddy doesn't want to hurt his feelings, and two coaches that are so blind to talent, they're walking us toward a cliff and don't even realize it.

    Kyle Shannahan needs to slowly walk away from Washington at the end of the season. It wouldn't hurt my feelings if he took his feeble minded father with him. There is no evidence to show that either one of them is capable of turning this franchise around. Mike has 2 Super Bowl rings from a team he inherited with one of the greatest QBs in history. They also had Terell Davis before his knees gave out, and a top notch defense. Hard not to win when handed the perfect situation. What has he done since Elway retired? He's gone 1-4 in the playoffs, and barely coached above .500 ball.

    Without a doubt, Kyle Shannahan needs to go after this season. The longer he's here, the worse we'll get. If Mike can't put together a winning squad within 2 seasons of his son leaving, we cut him loose too. However, I wouldn't be heartbroken if he left sooner.
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  2. #2

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    Well, I'm not huge Shanahan fan, but I think you might be a little critical with that analysis.

    Your list includes four seventh rounders, a sixth rounder, a third rounder and a first rounder.

    None of the sixth or seventh rounders were expected to do much, and they didn't. I guess that proves Shanahan isn't good at finding QBs in the very late rounds, but very few personnel people are. Shrug.

    The third rounder (Greise) turned out to be a middling QB. He went to a pro-bowl and started for about five years. That's not a terrible return for a third round QB.

    The first rounder is Jay Cutler, and he doesn't suck, and easily the best QB of his draft class. I'd love to have him on our team right now. He is currently on a team with no receiving weapons and a crappy line and somehow that team is 5-3. That team has no business being 5-3.

    The other important thing to note is that both Griese and Cutler played better for Shanahan than they did with their other teams. (The same can be said about Jake Plummer, by the way.)

    I'm not the most optimistic fan around. I do have concerns about Shanahan and Shanahan ... especially Shanahan. I wasn't a huge fan of the move to hire Mike. But I don't think you can hold up his QB draftees as evidence that he doesn't know what he's doing. And I think firing him after just two seasons would be franchise suicide. That is a Dan Snyder move. It's a panic move.

    If those concerns were valid we shouldn't have hired Mike in the first place, but we did. This is the guy we hitched our wagon to. We need to see it through. He's still building this team. If after it is built, we still suck, then we move on.
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  3. #3
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    My problem with the hire Henry, is that we both know no thought went into it. It was a typical Dan Snyder go for the big name move, nothing more.

    It seems like Dan Snyder is only interested in coaches with a ring on their finger (other than Zorn, who he only took because everyone he wanted said no), but we can probably all agree that bringing in Switzer would be a bad move. Snyder's problem, is he believes a championship resume is the biggest prerequisite in a head coach that matters, when this couldn't be further from accurate. He needs to take a new route. Go with a great coordinator who is hungry to prove himself, or a top college coach who hasn't won a National Championship yet, and wants to make a name for himself in the NFL. There are plenty of candidates that would be perfect, but Snyder always seems to have a short list that never consists of more than Shannahan, Gruden and Cowher. Who ever advises him is as stupid as he is in personnel decisions.

    And as I stated in my OP, Shannahan's problem isn't just his inability to draft a good QB, it's his inability to draft anything but the RB position. He wants to build a supporting cast around 2 third rate QBs, but he's not qualified to build a supporting cast. Nothing he has ever assembled shows otherwise.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Henry View Post
    The first rounder is Jay Cutler, and he doesn't suck, and easily the best QB of his draft class. I'd love to have him on our team right now. He is currently on a team with no receiving weapons and a crappy line and somehow that team is 5-3. That team has no business being 5-3.
    This is my biggest hope for 2012 and beyond - the Bears. Even with zero OL & crappy WRs they are competitive. Why? They've got a versatile back and an above average QB with a decent defense. They are a carbon copy of the Redskins, with the addition of someone capable behind center.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extreme View Post
    My problem with the hire Henry, is that we both know no thought went into it. It was a typical Dan Snyder go for the big name move, nothing more.

    It seems like Dan Snyder is only interested in coaches with a ring on their finger (other than Zorn, who he only took because everyone he wanted said no), but we can probably all agree that bringing in Switzer would be a bad move. Snyder's problem, is he believes a championship resume is the biggest prerequisite in a head coach that matters, when this couldn't be further from accurate. He needs to take a new route. Go with a great coordinator who is hungry to prove himself, or a top college coach who hasn't won a National Championship yet, and wants to make a name for himself in the NFL. There are plenty of candidates that would be perfect, but Snyder always seems to have a short list that never consists of more than Shannahan, Gruden and Cowher. Who ever advises him is as stupid as he is in personnel decisions.
    Some day, maybe before I die, Dan Snyder will hire a GM and let that guy go out and get that hungry young coach. I doubt that will ever happen though. Maybe Shanahan will work out and then when he retires Allen will be given the reigns to go out and get someone like that ...

    Sigh.



    And as I stated in my OP, Shannahan's problem isn't just his inability to draft a good QB, it's his inability to draft anything but the RB position. He wants to build a supporting cast around 2 third rate QBs, but he's not qualified to build a supporting cast. Nothing he has ever assembled shows otherwise.
    I'm not sure I agree. As I noted above, the three QBs Shanahan hand-picked and then built his team around (Griese, Plummer and Cutler) all played their best football under Shanahan. He knows how to put a team around a QB.

    I honestly don't think he considers Grossman or Beck to be more than placeholders until he finds that QB here. Lip-service from a coach means absolutely nothing. Of course he'll prop them up now, when we have no choice but to play one of them. But what he does in the offseason will tell us a lot more about his future plans. If he doesn't draft a QB in this upcoming draft ... well, everything you posted is probably true.

    If he does, I think there's still hope.
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    I give Shanahan a pass. He had a deep hole to dig out of (mixed metaphor?). He looked around...and decided to take a chance on McNabb while fixing other need areas first (Defense!). KS talked him into RG as a cheap, effective interim option.....too bad the effective part never materialized. they both tripped up on Beck.

    everyone in the Universe knows they have to get their QB this off-season. It'll take two seasons.....but things will definitely be looking up from that point forward - provided they luck out and land a quality QB!
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    Al, thats why I dont give him a pass, he didnt fix need areas, he created one and then fixed it at the cost of resources we NEEDED to put into the offence.

    This was a bad hire, I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt because he is an offencive genius, but that has not only not manifested, but he is lacking in his player judgement skills BIGTIME. he has one year to turn this around and show vast improvement imho, I dont want to waste any more time than that. turning a team around doesnt take 5 years it shouldnt even take 3, we were not a one win team after all.
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  8. #8
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    Shanahan at 3-5 knows this team has nothing to compete for in the standings. He knows he is going to get 2012 from Snyder and if he drafts Barkley or Jones and the team rebounds with a new qb and perhaps a free agent wide receiver, the 2011 troubles will be in the rear view mirror.

    Would it have been easier to settle at qb in Year 1 with a younger guy from the draft or via trade rather than the 33 year old McNabb?

    Yes. But here we are in 2011 with some hope on defense in Kerrigan, Jenkins (on IR), Cofield, Orakpo, etc and an offense that has some talent that needs coaching in Trent Williams, Fred Davis and Roy
    Helu.

    No doubt we are 5-6 starters on offense away from being a unit that scares people.

    But even with 12 picks and free agency you couldn't fill ALL the holes.

    Of course you didn't have to resign Jammal Brown and give Chris Chester a contract either.

    Both moves now seem to have been suspect.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rymanofthenorth View Post
    Al, thats why I dont give him a pass, he didnt fix need areas, he created one and then fixed it at the cost of resources we NEEDED to put into the offence.
    Ryman, no offense brother, but you sound like a broken record. We know you think the defense wasn't an area of need and by now you have to know that most of us completely disagree with you. Why keep beating this horse?

    At the time Shanahan took over, this team needed help at every position, right down to and including that of water boy.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rymanofthenorth View Post
    turning a team around doesnt take 5 years it shouldnt even take 3, we were not a one win team after all.
    If this were even remotely true, there wouldn't be any bad teams in the NFL!
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  11. #11
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    Shanahan at 3-5 knows this team has nothing to compete for in the standings. He knows he is going to get 2012 from Snyder and if he drafts Barkley or Jones and the team rebounds with a new qb and perhaps a free agent wide receiver, the 2011 troubles will be in the rear view mirror.

    Would it have been easier to settle at qb in Year 1 with a younger guy from the draft or via trade rather than the 33 year old McNabb?

    Yes. But here we are in 2011 with some hope on defense in Kerrigan, Jenkins (on IR), Cofield, Orakpo, etc and an offense that has some talent that needs coaching in Trent Williams, Fred Davis and Roy
    Helu.

    No doubt we are 5-6 starters on offense away from being a unit that scares people.

    But even with 12 picks and free agency you couldn't fill ALL the holes.

    Of course you didn't have to resign Jammal Brown and give Chris Chester a contract either.

    Both moves now seem to have been suspect.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neophyte View Post
    Ryman, no offense brother, but you sound like a broken record. We know you think the defense wasn't an area of need and by now you have to know that most of us completely disagree with you. Why keep beating this horse?

    At the time Shanahan took over, this team needed help at every position, right down to and including that of water boy.
    I actually dont think that most of "us" completely disagree with me, I especially think that the facts speak for themselves. I never said the defence wasnt in need some of resources obviously we needed some tweaks and at least a FS and an OLB as well as a CB and some depth, I said that the defence was the strength of a weak team and that we had far greater needs. I also said that committing so many resources (although belatedly and too late to prevent one season of abject garbage play) was stupid when it was the Offence that was and remains our biggest problem.

    we took a position that was actually a strength (De, where we had a rotation of Jarmon, Carter, Daniels, and potentially Rak, DT where we had AH, (who despite revisionist history was at least solid and at times very good for us) and monty with golston and Griff) and turned it into a weakness that demanded upgrades. we lacked a starter 4 at linebacker let alone backups.

    meanwhile we still had severe lacks on Offence that we have yet to fill (oline and receiver).

    the problem is that due to a lack of knowledge and information, some people actually thought the switch to the 3-4 "takes time" it does not, it takes resources and coaching.
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    Really? when the thread is about whether or not its Shannahan who is the problem and someone brings up what was arguably his largest mistake it derails the thread?

    its called a discussion board for a reason, if you genuinely think Neo is right then post why, and not the same old tired and disproven arguments. One thing that annoys me is when people don't even try to couch their arguments in some sort of debatable manner, or when they try to change my arguments to suit theirs. My arguement was never that we didnt need work on defence, my argument was that we needed to prioritise, follow a plan and make sure that plan was feasible.

    My hugest issue with Shannahan is that not only did he meddle with the defence, but he HASN'T DONE WHAT WE BROUGHT HIM IN TO DO WHICH WAS FIX THE OFFENCE. We can argue all day about what was right or wrong but the bottom line is the guy is an offencive guru who is presiding over a team that looks atrocious on offence right now. He had carte blanche to fix this team, brought in his own GM, his own QB was given a blank check to sign free agents and THIS is year two and frankly we look brutal.

    Lanky, as usual you look at the surface of things, improving a team takes coaching, scouting scheming and playing, our issue was we dont scout worth a damn, we dont uncover talent, we dont scheme around what we have and worst of all, we dont build for the future. we have given flashes that perhaps Shanny has a clue but honestly, im starting to doubt that this time is going to help.
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    actually, Shanahan played this too conservatively

    I think he should have taken a blowtorch to this team in January 2010 when he took over and said no to the Eagles in re McNabb.

    If we had to make it 1-2 years with a middle round draft pick as the starting qb or a veteran such as Orton or Hasselbeck in free agency (no compensation) that would have been more than OK with me.

    Too many 35 year old players were kept that extra season.

    And in bringing in McNabb (33), Brown (29), Kemoeatu (33), Galloway (38) and a bunch of others, Shanahan wasted time on guys that were past their primes and were of little value to this club moving forward.

    I know it's going back to years before true free agency, but I like the way Bill Walsh built the 49ers up from 2-14 into a championship club, gutting the existing roster and dealing with a club that wasn't going to compete for a year or two.

    Ditto for the Cowboys under Jimmy Johnson. Make the draft picks, be aggressive in signing non-drafted rookie free agents and trade away veterans for additional picks.

    Again, you go 1-15, followed up with 7-9.

    Big deal. This club is going to be lucky to approach 7-9 this season specifically because so much time was wasted last year on a 6-10 team when going 1-15 or 2-14 without McNabb and Brown and guys you spent picks to acquire would have been the smarter move.

    Any time you try and minimize the pain of a necessary action you really just extend the time of misery.

    It's better to take the medicine and move on.

    If we had finished 1-15 last year we might have had Cam Newton now instead of John Beck starting at qb in Miami.

    That would have been worth it right there.
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    Ryman, I would argue that we did not bring Shanahan in to fix the offense so much as we brought him in to fix the whole team. And it all needed fixing.

    Sure, on paper the defense appeared to be ahead of the offense. I am one of those that considers that open for debate, obviously. You are not. And that is fine.

    However, if Shanahan was brought to make a winner out of this outfit, that is very different than just bringing in someone to fix one side of the ball.

    I also think you can argue quite successfully that he worked on BOTH sides equally his first year. On offense, he traded for Donovan McNabb and drafted Trent Williams at #4. If Donovan had even played up to the level of Jake Plummer the first couple of years he was in Denver, this team would have looked a lot different last year but he didn't. He also brought in Lichtenstieger and Torain and traded for Brown.

    On defense he brought in Kemuatu, Buchanon, traded for Carriker and drafted Riley. Granted, so far only the Carriker move has born much fruit but all those moves were praised as solid, low risk moves representing about the best we could do at those positions at the time.

    As it turns out, few of the moves made on either side of the ball worked to the Skins advantage over the course of the season.

    I think you could also argue that he looked at what was available to him in terms of both draft picks and potential free agent signings and crafted the plan he thought would work best. We have to always remember he has to work in the real world with the resources he can actually get.

    The show down with Haynesworth cost the team dearly and I think there is plenty of blame to go around with both sides. Shanahan could have done more to lessen the over all scope of the issue and Haynesworth could have shut his mouth and actually tried to do what 99.999999% of the other employees in the world have to do every day, namely what he is told. Personally, I think the fact that he didn't do squat in a 4-3 system this year, playing to his strengths, gives you an idea of what he wouldn't have done here last too had he gotten his way.

    The truth is that if he is guilty of anything it is underestimating the mess he was inheriting from Zorn. He thought a switch to the 3-4 plus a couple of players on D and adding a high flying OC with a former All Pro QB on the offense would make this a 10 win team. It didn't.
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    The club whiffed on Year 1, though, because only Trent Williams as the #1 pick saw playing time and factored into the future alignment of the team.

    The trades for McNabb and Brown robbed us of picks we could have used on productive players in Rounds 2, 3 and 4 that could have been starters down the road.

    The Redskins own #4 pick last year Perry Riley so far is a no show. This is the middle of Year 2 and he isn't good enough to even get a few reps when McIntosh gets winded?

    Remember McIntosh was thought such a bad fit for this defense that Riley ended up being the #4 pick last to begin with, and Rocky was resigned late in free agency.

    This year?

    Kerrigan at #16 looks like a keeper. Jenkins may prove to be so in time.

    But most good organizations count on their #1 and #2 picks making the team and becoming contributors.

    What this team has not been able to do is come up with that #3, #4, #5 or #6 pick that comes in and exceeds expectations and nails down a starting job right away.

    Good organizations come up with those players every once in awhile, this organization NEVER seems to do so.

    All those picks after Jenkins from 2011 appear to be guys that are having a tough slog in getting adjusted to the pro game and are coming along slowly.

    So far there is no breakout player.

    And on a team without younger playmakers entering the offseason we really needed someone like that to emerge.
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    BD, I think you have to add Carriker to the list of moves that panned out. We got him for swapping low round picks with St Louis and now he is a key to how well this defense is playing in Year 2 of Shanahan.
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    Carriker for sure has panned out, considering we got him for nothing (a swap of 5th rounders, I believe).
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    I'm concerned about the ability of either Shanahan to judge talent. The list of questionable decisions is just too long, and it's depressing. And I just don't feel comfortable with Mike picking the right QB in next year's draft. I wish someone not named Dan, Vinny, Mike or Kyle would do it.
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    Houw 'bout "Bruce", McD? I'm hoping he has a fair amount of input, if not the final say.
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