How do you say goodbye to another wretched Redskins season?
One when saying goodbye to the head coach after an 0-5 start. To a fall where three different quarterbacks started again only to find the 2020 starter that didn’t finish the season because of injury. To that, losing the 2020 running back who was hurt twice and barely played.
Oh, pain was the persistent theme of the season all the way back to the opening minutes of off-season drills when Reuben Foster went down on the third snap. Jordan Reed missed the year with another concussion that frankly should be his last because seven concussions is six more than enough.
Even the indestructible Ryan Kerrigan ended a 139-game streak with his first injury.
It was a year without Trent Williams, who called president Bruce Allen’s bluff and held out just enough to gain credit for a season served without ever padding up.
And another year where Allen continued to train wreck the franchise with 101 losses over a decade by not trading the holdout left tackle for a needed first-rounder.
It was another year of half-empty stadiums where opposing fans outnumbered locals every single time. Maybe the Redskins were 1-7 at Fed Up Field this season, but the “home” crowd went 7-1.
It was another fall of under-producing by a defense that was expected to be in the NFL’s top half, not among the very worst. With one game remaining, the Redskins have allowed 31 or more points in 7 of 15 games. Why New York Giants rookie Daniel Jones threw for five touchdowns against Washington.
The Redskins supposedly found a work ethic after Gruden was fired. That’s really just propaganda. This team didn’t play any better after changing coaches, it just faced weaker teams. At best, the Redskins beat three equally bad teams.
The scariest part of this season is the Redskins may not say goodbye to the root cause – Allen. Good coaching candidates reportedly don’t want to work in Washington because of Allen’s reputation for undermining coaches when things go badly. Ask two coaches Allen hired – Mike Shanahan and Gruden along with short-term general manager Scot McCloughan – over how Allen’s incessant whispering to owner Dan Snyder that the team is close only to lose because of others.
If Allen stays, the rest of Redskins Nation leaves. There weren’t 10,000 Redskins fans at either of the last two home games. How does Snyder not take drastic steps after that? Snyder fired buddy Vinny Cerrato in 2009 for a lot less.
And how can Snyder not say goodbye to interim coach Bill Callahan, who contributed to two straight losses with questionable late decisions? Callahan is a good assistant coach, but he inspires no faith among fans.
And faith – that’s the only thing that can save this franchise from losing the rest of its supporters. A new team president and coach plus a second overall draft pick are desperately needed. Otherwise, this was the decade when the Redskins lost a generational foothold on Washingtonians.
How do you say goodbye to this season? By sprinting as fast as possible into the 2020 off-season.
Rick Snider is an award-winning sports writer who has covered Washington sports since 1978. He first wrote about the Redskins in 1983 before becoming a beat writer in 1993. Snider currently writes for several national and international publications and is a Washington tour guide. Follow Rick on Twitter at @Snide_Remarks.