Reasons to Go About Your Business Today, Sans Weaponry
1) In last year's season opener, the Redskins scored zero touchdowns and nine points, managing just one field goal out of two trips inside the 10. Here's what the experts said:
--A touchdown usually isn't too much to ask of a professional offensive unit. Teams score touchdowns every week, sometimes more than one. You could look it up.
--Many of the hallmarks of the second Joe Gibbs era were prominent again -- an offense that could not score a touchdown, shaky special teams, too many turnovers, untimely penalties.
--A win is a win, sure, but Joe Gibbs and his offensive think-tankers had to be expecting more than three field goals and a narrow victory over a team quarterbacked by a rookie fourth-round draft pick.
--The word is out on the 2005 Washington Redskins. Unfortunately, the word is "dull."
2) To pick another moment in time, Oct. 31. Washington now has the second-ranked offense in the NFL, facing the 31st-ranked Giants defense, but the Skins don't enter N.Y. territory until the final minute of the third quarter. Here's what the experts said, in a mashed up sentence of my own creation:
Bumbling and inept from the start, having been undone by a crisis of fundamental football, in the space of three wretched quarters, they put a promising season in jeopardy.
3) It's late November. The air grows chilly. Or maybe it's unseasonably warm. The Style section writes about a family taking a charter bus trip to New York. Life is so innocent, so pure. And the Redskins are now 5-6, after an overtime loss that leeches the very life blood out of our city, sayeth the soothsayers.
"The offense, for the second straight week, failed miserably and the result is almost certainly bye-bye 2005 playoffs," they sayethed. "Fans are wondering if Gibbs is the man for the job." It was the "latest blow to their dwindling playoff hopes." "Only the real burgundy-bleeders, the ones who sit in traffic to park in a littered pay lot and watch the Washington Redskins from the far reaches of the upper deck, who decorate their houses with Redskins door-knockers and table lamps, and their cars with antenna flags, believe that this [could] still be a deserving playoff team."
4) The Redskins finished 10-6 and advanced to the NFC semifinals.
5) I certainly don't blame the sayers of sooth, then or now. I mean, you've got to say something. I'm getting paid for writing this, after all. All I'm saying is, if John Hall manages to hit that field goal, an outcome which has absolutely nothing to do with Al Saunders, Santana Moss, Sean Taylor, the 700-page playbook, Mark Brunell, Tom Cruise, Suri, the FedEx corporation, Landover or the Largo Town Center, there's a pretty good chance we're reading today about Redskins grit, about winning despite a battered starting running back and a missing star cornerback against an improving Vikings team, about how Minnesota can keep its 2-1-1 preseason record and Washington will take its 1-0 regular season mark, about how that boring screen pass to Santana Moss was so crafty and exciting, etc.
6) But they lost, and so instead you can read this in blogland: David Gaines joins me in blaming the kicker, The Big Pig still hates the punter, America's weirdest person says they "kinda stank like stank breath", TadCranky accurately says "it could have been worse" while ripping Kornheiser, Sports Illustrated has a very disturbing TK photo, a Vikings blogger is "somewhat euphoric," the Curly R says a bad word about Marty Schottenheimer, CalamityJake says the Skins should cut Sean Taylor and in its latest work of genius Kissing Suzy Kolber says Joe Gibbs has no lips and a lot of other stuff I can't repeat here. Once again, I love the Internet.
September 12, 2006; 12:57 PM ET
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