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BGO.C.D. - Hype, Hope, and Victories of the Pyrrhic Variety

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Boone

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***Warning*** - this blog entry may result in buzzkill, irritability, and depression in some Redskins fans. Proceed with caution. Redskins fans...

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absolutely, I am a guy who you all know was dead against paying what we paid to get RG3, im willing to admit I was wrong. He has been better than advertised so far and has given us two things we havent had ina long tme, a dynamic playmaker at the QB position and a genuine media darling. It cant be measured by stats but the difference Rg3 makes ia tangible, we always have that punchers chance now.

The defence though, thats another story, this defence is not just bad, but its epic bad, and there is no excuse, NONE. we were about middle of the pack, upper middle actually when we decided to blow it all up because shanny got a boner for the 3-4. so after a year of epic awfulness, we literally replaced the entire roster on defence. this resulted in marginal improvement last season, but another massive dropoff this season to the point where despite arguably far superior talent to the pervious DC's regime, we are a far worse defence.

perhaps shanny wants to generate excitement with shootouts, but its more likely that he just doesnt have a clue about defence. The biggest question here is , will shanny admit to a mistake, and rectify it, or will he continue to dig himself a hole?
 

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I wonder if I created a thread about the different uniforms we wear, would... nay, HOW would Ryman turn that conversation to the defense sucking?

Nice piece Boone. I'm not sure too many people are buying into the dynasty talk. Nor should they. Peyton Manning is as good a QB as we have ever seen, and he has one the Super Bowl... once. Brees started slowly but came on to break records, and has one the Super Bowl... once.

The only dynasty recently would be the Pats, and most neutral observers would tell you that was more due to the defense than Brady, espeically the first two.

What has me so excited about Griff is the fact that he is this good this early. He SHOULD improve and get better. The guys I listed above took several seasons to grow into the franchise QBs they are today. I am not dumb enough to expect multiple titles, but I am dumb enough to expect multiple playoff appearances, and to be in the discussion for SB a couple of times.
 

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How can any of us (Ryman or otherwise) NOT talk about the defense Goal? If we had even an average version, we'd be leading the NFC East right now.

It's not about what fans 'rationally' think...but there's a definite belief and sense out there that is readily apparent that many of them truly believe now that we've got RGIII that we're destined for greatness.

There's no such thing as 'destined for greatness'. Greatness is earned, and the road to it is paved by years and years of planning, good decision-making, and clear vision of the objectives. I think it's obvious that some of the plans the Redskins have made are not working. It remains to be seen if Shanahan and Allen are up to the task of building a complete team. I'm not yet sold that they are.
 

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Dynasty is something I dont think any real fan is talking about but it is hard not to get excited when you see him step on the field and every single week it comes down to us having a chance to win.
But that's the exact sentiment that brought me to this conversation Mike. Every team has a 'chance to win'. Every game, every Sunday. What you really mean is that Griffin gives us a 'realistic chance to win'. I'm not opposed to that and you'd have to be mentally challenged to not acknowledge that this is an improvement. But it's also pathetic in a sense, because although we can also see that we can't consistently win with a horrible defense, a non-existent secondar, error-pone special teams, and an offensive line that can't protect the QB.

There are other bright spots on this team, it's not all doom and gloom.

But Griffin is not a God. He may not be able to sustain the level of play we've seen so far if we can't protect him better. And I'm tired of celebrating 'being competitive'.
 

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lol did you guys even read Boones initial post? the point is this, we gave up the house for a player who has lived up to expectations and surpassed them, even the biggest RG3 supporters didnt expect him to be this good this fast nor to improve EVERYTHING on offence the way he has, and on a team that had even marginal defence it would have led to a huge resurgence, instead we will now just barely lose games in a different way lol.

RG3 damn near led us to a win if not for a fumble that was not even remotely his fault, but our point is that this is all wasted because just when we finally see light at the end of the tunnel on offence with the first competant offence we have had in a long time, we also have a massive drop off on defence and special teams that are not special in the good sense of the word.

this team, needs a DC who is gonna take risks, because we arent gonna be a very good bend but dont break Defence when we break all the time anyway, so we may as well gamble and take risks to force turnovers ala the saints. On Offence, we shouldnt be taking massive risks, play to RG3's strengths but protect him as best we can and minimise the hits he takes this season. there is light at the end of the tunnel but experienced fans can see that all we have done really is trade one strength for weakness and vice versa, thats not how to build a team.
 

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Another great piece of writing and evaluation, Boone. RG3 is fantastic, but it seems like he is playing against a stacked deck--one that the organization seems to bring upon themself.

You hit on a few of the problems; I'd expand that list to include some larger, more macro issues that prevent us from ever being among the elite:

1. We just recently built an indoor practice facility. That should have been completed five years ago. Blame for that may rest on Gibbs, but I put it on Snyder. We haven't given our players the best tools with which to compete during his ownership. From Vinny, to poor coaches, to something less apparent like an indoor facility--we've been worlds away from ever competing with the big boys.

2. Shanahan. I'll take Jim Harbaugh, please. Shanahan teams have always been marked by awful defenses, and poor personnel decisions. It's what cost him his job in Denver. Why would any of that change here? Haslett? Bob Slowik? Come on.

3. Our training staff. Like our lack of an indoor training facility, I believe this is another area that Snyder neglected for far too long. All teams have injuries--it's just that ours seem to be diagnosed incorrectly, or that our players never recover from them. Torrain, Hightower, Helu and now Garcon are just a few recent examples. Shawn Springs and Marcus Washington were never healthy.

Elite organizations demand perfection. They won't accept losing. I'm not so sure that winning is required here to keep a job in a way that it is expected with the better teams.
 

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Another great piece of writing and evaluation, Boone. RG3 is fantastic, but it seems like he is playing against a stacked deck--one that the organization seems to bring upon themself.

You hit on a few of the problems; I'd expand that list to include some larger, more macro issues that prevent us from ever being among the elite:

1. We just recently built an indoor practice facility. That should have been completed five years ago. Blame for that may rest on Gibbs, but I put it on Snyder. We haven't given our players the best tools with which to compete during his ownership. From Vinny, to poor coaches, to something less apparent like an indoor facility--we've been worlds away from ever competing with the big boys.

2. Shanahan. I'll take Jim Harbaugh, please. Shanahan teams have always been marked by awful defenses, and poor personnel decisions. It's what cost him his job in Denver. Why would any of that change here? Haslett? Bob Slowik? Come on.

3. Our training staff. Like our lack of an indoor training facility, I believe this is another area that Snyder neglected for far too long. All teams have injuries--it's just that ours seem to be diagnosed incorrectly, or that our players never recover from them. Torrain, Hightower, Helu and now Garcon are just a few recent examples. Shawn Springs and Marcus Washington were never healthy.

Elite organizations demand perfection. They won't accept losing. I'm not so sure that winning is required here to keep a job in a way that it is expected with the better teams.

exactly,

I dont understand snyder, the guy ovbiously wants to win, he is willing to spend scads of money to achieve that, but then he goes and makes rookie mistakes time after time.

we need to start spending money on front office stuff, its not as sexy as the latest free agent but it leads to long term succsess. I would love to see a massive investment in our scouting department, in our talent evaluation department.

your point about the training staff is massive, why is it we have so many misdiagnosed injuries? why is it we have players whose careers end because they just cant get and stay healthy?

why is it that we have so much trouble finding Olinemen? did alex gibbs do that much for shanny? why is it we have such poor special teams? Danny smith is well respected but we need some young up and comers who invest energy.

I think we need shannahan to be wearing one hat, the head coach, then we need a president of football operations, and a GM who is allowed to do his own thing in regards to building the team. our problem right now is that everything begins and ends with shannahan, and that rarely works. if shannahan had to answer to a president and GM does anyone think Haslett would still be here?
 

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Boone -- from your title, I thought you were going to make a different (though related) Pyrrhic point about RGIII -- i.e., that while he may very well be the genuine article, we have paid so much to get him that we'll end up losing the fight because we can't compete in 2 of the 3 phases of the game.

This is exacerbated by the track record of Great Satan Dan Snyder (he's more of a Archangel Satan, than Great Satan, if we're honest), the various incarnations of the Front Office (admittedly no one has been worse than Vinny Cerrato, so at least Bruce Allen is a step in the right direction) and our coaching staff (which while they have had moments of brilliance, they have also overseen some massive lapses in judgment from this fan's perspective).

All of this combines to suggest that foresight, patience and planning are anathema to the Redskins as an organization.

And this essentially draws us to a corrollary of your point: when one of their best decisions (taken in isolation) has come to fruition in the form of a draft pick of RGIII, it's hard not to look at the decisions that preceded it and followed it and whether in aggregate we're better or worse off.

It's sort of like the guy who keeps borrowing more and more to juice his returns only to ignore that the debt payments on the borrowing are going to overcome the returns no matter how good they are. (And I promise I'm not talking about the U.S. economy here!)

In any event, I'm not convinced that RGIII is a Pyrrhic victory just yet -- all will be determined on the basis of how strongly we finish and whether we're able to actually build on this year instead of play our regular game of fix one glaring hole which ignoring the others that are growing daily.

More one thinks about it, it's hard to think it'll turn out to be the latter.

Though they sure are more fun to watch with RGIII under center. Maybe RGIII almost serves as a opiate to lessen the effects of the suffering...gotta be some Greek tragedy about that...
 

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How can any of us (Ryman or otherwise) NOT talk about the defense Goal? If we had even an average version, we'd be leading the NFC East right now.

It's not about what fans 'rationally' think...but there's a definite belief and sense out there that is readily apparent that many of them truly believe now that we've got RGIII that we're destined for greatness.

There's no such thing as 'destined for greatness'. Greatness is earned, and the road to it is paved by years and years of planning, good decision-making, and clear vision of the objectives. I think it's obvious that some of the plans the Redskins have made are not working. It remains to be seen if Shanahan and Allen are up to the task of building a complete team. I'm not yet sold that they are.
As Mike pointed out, I'm pretty sure when ShanAllen were drawing up the D, they weren't planning on the injuries. Clearly, this is a defense designed to get pressure quickly on the QB. Without Carriker to draw the occasional double, and Rak to get fast pressure, we have no choice but to leave our average corners on an island. It's gonna take time, guys. There is NO position on the field more influential than QB. In other words, even if we drafted the next RGIII on defense, he couldn't have the same impact.

That's not to say I'm not frustrated by the D, and Haz in particular. When we hired him, I was in the wait and see before crushing him crowd. Well, I've waited and I've seen and he can go. Imagine what a difference it would have made to have our original D out on the field this year (including Merriweather and Jackson), and to know that in the offseason if we add a starting CB, we should be in pretty damned good shape, particularly if we could get a guy who could call a defensive plan well. Granting there are injuries, losing half of your secondary before the first regular season snap doesn't strike me as wholly and completely a failure of the FO. It would be nice if we had more depth, sure. But you can't plug EVERY hole in one offseason, particularly wheyou factor Mara's bull****.
 

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I get all that Goal, and you make some fair points. I actually think, had Chase Minnifield not gotten hurt, he'd likely have risen to starter status by now and we'd be in a lot better shape, at least in the secondary. I also recognize that we got screwed on cap space, have had some horrible injury luck (don't we always - see previous training staff comments), and have plenty of excuses for why our defense is getting worse, not better.

And I'm not arguing that RGIII can't be the key ingredient, around whom we provide a good enough supporting cast to make the Redskins a feared team. I'm just saying, right now, we have a feared QB, but we are not and really should not be viewed as a feared team. I don't know that I believe Shanahan's nature or strength is recognizing failure where we continue to see it and addressing it aggressively.

We'll see.

I'd point to the o-line and failure to build a stud version there over 3 years running because the Redskins 'do it differently' and it requires extra special kind of guys as a concern. The possibility that Griffin won't make it through a 16 game schedule, much less a long healthly career, is a real issue.

I have some confidence that we have professional leadership in place that will eventually get us there. I just see and hear a lot of truly over-the-top hype regarding Griffin. It takes more than a QB saviour to win long term.
 
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Boone

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Boone -- from your title, I thought you were going to make a different (though related) Pyrrhic point about RGIII -- i.e., that while he may very well be the genuine article, we have paid so much to get him that we'll end up losing the fight because we can't compete in 2 of the 3 phases of the game.
:) I'm sure some do have that point. I think the price we paid will stunt our growth, delay it maybe, but shouldn't cripple us or make development of a strong supporting cast unachievable. My use of the word 'Pyrrhic' is more in response to the majority response of Redskins fans on how great it is to be 'competitive' again. It's not great. Winning is great. Getting close is just balm for our wounded pride.

All of this combines to suggest that foresight, patience and planning are anathema to the Redskins as an organization.
I sure hope not Sol. I'm hoping that's changed. I like a lot of what I've seen the past 2 years (not so much the first) particularly with the youth movement. We need to continue that.

And this essentially draws us to a corrollary of your point: when one of their best decisions (taken in isolation) has come to fruition in the form of a draft pick of RGIII, it's hard not to look at the decisions that preceded it and followed it and whether in aggregate we're better or worse off.
I'm with most fans here - we are better with RGIII (regardless of cost) than without him. He at least gives us some hope. My area of contention is with the idea that he's SO GOOD, he can raise the Redskins to respectability and perennial relevance all by himself. He's not. He needs help and lots of it.

In any event, I'm not convinced that RGIII is a Pyrrhic victory just yet -- all will be determined on the basis of how strongly we finish and whether we're able to actually build on this year instead of play our regular game of fix one glaring hole which ignoring the others that are growing daily.
Agreed.

Maybe RGIII almost serves as a opiate to lessen the effects of the suffering...gotta be some Greek tragedy about that...
Yeah. It has that feel to it. I'm kind of flabbergasted how many Redskins fans are 'happy' with 3-4, especially when with just competent effort in a couple of spots, we could easily be in command of the division. I'm happy RGIII is a Redskin, but I am not happy with our team overall. I think I'm in the definitie minority on this front.
 

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Very interesting and thought provoking post, Boone.

I think something interesting has happened.

RG3's unexpected superlative success at QB has only accentuated by contrast the deficiencies we as fans continually-and justifiably-lament as we edge ever closer to winning games only to let them slip from our grasp yet again. We should be winning most of the games we're losing "oh so close."

The problems are suddenly so glaring it's difficult to imagine someone connected with the Redskins organization not seeing them and exclaiming "Holy Crap we gotta fix that!"

O.K., here's the position I'm at right now-subject to change, of course, as evens unfold-granted we have no first round picks for a while and Mara and Goodell have screwed us cap-wise-but we still can make an effort to shore up the "weak spots." I'll be watching very closely the next draft and FA, and watching if accountability matters among the coaching staff. This includes scouting and personnel acquisition.

Sound like I'm being too patient? Sue me.

I'm giving the mule time to respond to the two-by four.
 

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Very interesting and thought provoking post, Boone.

I think something interesting has happened.

RG3's unexpected superlative success at QB has only accentuated by contrast the deficiencies we as fans continually-and justifiably-lament as we edge ever closer to winning games only to let them slip from our grasp yet again. We should be winning most of the games we're losing "oh so close."

The problems are suddenly so glaring it's difficult to imagine someone connected with the Redskins organization not seeing them and exclaiming "Holy Crap we gotta fix that!"

O.K., here's the position I'm at right now-subject to change, of course, as evens unfold-granted we have no first round picks for a while and Mara and Goodell have screwed us cap-wise-but we still can make an effort to shore up the "weak spots." I'll be watching very closely the next draft and FA, and watching if accountability matters among the coaching staff. This includes scouting and personnel acquisition.

Sound like I'm being too patient? Sue me.

I'm giving the mule time to respond to the two-by four.

That's it - exactly Serv!

I can see 'what could be' - which has made the 'we almost did it' performances that I'd normally find solace and comfort in (because, afterall, we're the Redskins!) almost excruciatingly intolerable.

I know that I should be more patient.

I want to be more patient.

But I cannot be patient.

We've got a great QB - finally! Now let's get a damn team built around him :)
 

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That's it - exactly Serv!

I can see 'what could be' - which has made the 'we almost did it' performances that I'd normally find solace and comfort in (because, afterall, we're the Redskins!) almost excruciatingly intolerable.

I know that I should be more patient.

I want to be more patient.

But I cannot be patient.

We've got a great QB - finally! Now let's get a damn team built around him :)
I don't think anybody would argue against that. It has sounded however, in some of these posts however, that some would like these improvements to take place now in the middle of the season. Through magic, I guess. If we don't address these areas in the off season, them yeah, I think we will all be upset.
 

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I don't think anybody would argue against that. It has sounded however, in some of these posts however, that some would like these improvements to take place now in the middle of the season. Through magic, I guess. If we don't address these areas in the off season, them yeah, I think we will all be upset.
I don't think that's it at all. Magic? How about building something in the first 3 years? It's fine to say 'address these areas in the off season'. But it ignores the fact that Shanahan and Haslett have had several off seasons to 'address' some of this stuff.

Sorry - not buying that our defense, special teams, and O-line are where they should be in a coach's 3rd season. I understand it takes time, but we aren't seeing progress there, and injuries don't explain it all away.

If Redskins fans didn't have RG3 to cheer for, they'd be calling for heads. That's the whole point.
 

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Stop it. We have two main areas of weakness, OLine and the secondary. Those who grouse about the lack of quality players the FO has brought in are overlooking Morris, Riley, Young, Paulsen, Robinson, etc. I also think you are seriously underestimating the damage that Vinny did. He was pretty solid in the first round, and then pretty horrible after that. Kelly, Thomas and Sleepy were three completely WASTED second round picks. You must get production from the second round, and do fairly well in the third round, then get lucky after that. Vinny pretty much sucked all the way through.

It takes a while to recover from that level of suckitude. We have been filling holes,, or plugging the dyke for three years, and we now have two major areas of weakness. If we can fill those areas this off season, and then work on upgrading and improving depth, we will be a very solid team, with the chance to be great. Not sure how anyone is pessimistic about our future?
 

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The Skins have struggled all year with the "bend then break "defense all season. It is kinda hard to ignore.:end:
 

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I didn't say I was pessimistic about the future. My point is that we should be further along than we are, and we should be. Our QB saviour isn't enough now, and he won't be in the future if we don't do a better job building around him.

If you're not one of the fans gushing about how unstoppable we are automatically going to be because of RG3, then I wasn't talking to you, was I?

And btw, who pissed in your Cheerios today? :)
 

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Good piece, B. While I've been thoroughly enjoying Griffin's first few weeks here, the nagging thought that the rest of the team seems to be regressing keeps creeping into the back of my mind.

The bottom line is there are no moral victories in sports. If you don't win you lose. And we're still losing just as much with a QB as we did without one. That doesn't sit right.
 
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