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Zorn Institutes New Dress Code

Standardization. (By John McDonnell - TWP)

If I'm being truthful, Redskins practices did look a bit raggedy in the dress-code department last year. There seemed to be no standard practice attire, and many players had their own little quirks, including Clinton Portis, whose quirk was stationing his sweatpants somewhere around his kneecaps. This was all good for keeping bored bloggers on their toes, but it was apparently bad for team unity, and so this year the dress code has been revamped.

And to kick off the change, Jim Zorn did what you'd expect of any cookie-cutter NFL coach: he put on a little fashion show during team meetings on Wednesday. I guess all I can do at this point is print his full explanation.

"Here's what I did, I wanted to kind of cut down on all of the colors," Zorn said. "We had an excellent color scheme last year, ok? I wanted to become more boring, and use our burgundy as the featured color. Because we had light gray, dark gray, black, smokey gray. We had dark burgundy, we had red. We had all kinds of colors. And then we had bellbottom sweats, where guys were taping around [their ankles]. You guys remember that? White tape around everybody's ankles? We looked like bike riders trying to keep their pants from getting greasy.

"So what I did is I got together with Brad Berlin, our equipment manager, and we kind of created just a cutdown on colors and styles of what we wanted the team to look like.

"[It's a long answer, and I'm sorry, this is not a great question, right?" he interjected, though I loudly disagreed.]

"What I did was I sampled our sweatpants and I sampled them on how these guys could wear them if they wanted to," he continued. "So I sampled a long pair of sweats, but underneath the long pair I had some really cool cut-off sweats that I sampled. So I just took the long sweats off and I had these really nice below-the-knee cut-offs, and they're awesome. In fact, the guy that had them on today was Colt Brennan. And then I took those off, I was not down to my shorts, but I was down to the Chris Cooley-style, which was real high cut, right?"

[Cue Mike Singletary jokes.]

"So that's what [Cooley] was talking about, I had the Chris Cooley look. If you wanted it, you could go with the Chris Cooley look. And he can't understand why the whole team doesn't go for the Chris Cooley look. It just looks like early '70s, that's all. I modeled his style and everybody laughed at me, and that's why you don't see me in the Cooley look today."

[Cooley on the changes: I was ecstatic to know that not only was I going to be allowed to wear my shorts, but it was encouraged by the main man.As for how they worked out - I liked them, but I'm pretty sure when I crouch down my junk is hanging out the side. I mean, I have spandex shorts underneath, but I will be fairly conscience when the Washington Post camera men gets up close and personal."]

And how did players receive Zorn's fashion show?

"I don't think anybody was expecting that," Jason Campbell said. "We were like, 'Cmon coach, you've got to show us your bony legs? Cover that up.' Real bony and skinny."

And why, again, did Zorn desire uniformity?

"Because we don't look like a team," he said. "And that's what we're trying to put together: A team. So I just want these guys to wear the things that they like to wear, but I just don't want all of the different models and makes. I just wanted to cut that down so we can go out and not make that an issue."

By Dan Steinberg  |  July 30, 2009; 11:43 AM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
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Next: Clinton Portis Explains His Blond 'Do


did he wear any maroon and black?

Posted by: inchesfromyourface | July 30, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Good to see their priorities are in order over at the annual train wreck.

Posted by: thediesel | July 30, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Easy Diesel, the Skins are undefeated!

Posted by: jgperras | July 30, 2009 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Clearly spoken like someone who's never played the game. If you did you'd know that zorn is trying to build team unity, one of the most underrated factors of successful football teams imo. Instead of everyone doing their own thing, dressing how they feel like dressing, he's trying to break down those barriers and say this is how a redskin should look. One shouldn't underestimate the little, seemingly insignificant things that go into building a great team.

Posted by: Wfield21 | July 30, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

What did he have Jansen wearing?

Oh wait, nevermind...

Posted by: jhorstma | July 30, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

imho, a great move

Posted by: RedBaron2008 | July 30, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

The Redskins aren't good enough to be undisciplined.

Posted by: bethesdaguy | July 30, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

There should be no need for an explanation as to what Jim is striving to do here with the practice dress code. Many outstanding coaches in the past in the NFL have taken this approach. When there is consistency in the small things that generally carries over to the everything in general. A uniform and consistent approach to how things are to be done.

Posted by: afriendofzorn | July 30, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

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