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Portis Gives Hoo-Rah Talks


By John McDonnell - TWP

A week ago, Clinton Portis was asked whether he was becoming a more vocal leader. He seemed to say that no, he was not.

"We've got twenty people walking around the locker room with 'Hoo-rah' talks," he said. "You know, pumping guys up saying, 'let's do it, we can do it baby.' It's Week 3. I don't think it takes a hoo-rah talk, I don't think it takes pumping up a guy."

And then Week 4 comes around, and what do you know, there was Clinton Portis on the sideline, walking around and giving Hoo-rah talks. I mean, what gives?

"Pretty much it was the energy," Portis explained today on ESPN 980's John Thompson Show. "I think our energy level been down. And having the opportunity to get guys into the game, to encourage guys, I think that was our talk before the game, just encouraging guys that no matter what, stick with it and let's go out and play team ball. Every time somebody came off the field or while the defense was on the field, trying to be into the game, congratulating guys for making plays, getting stuff done. I think it was just up to me just to keep guys into the game and hoping that it picked up."

Thompson asked if that was unusual behavior for Portis, and the back confirmed that yes, it was.

"I think my normal demeanor is more sitting over to the side, relaxing," he said. "I think people began to feed off that demeanor, and all of the sudden everybody's to the side relaxing. So it was pretty much just trying to find a way to get guys into the game, to keep guys believing and to let 'em know, if we make a mistake, it don't matter. We're gonna go out and we're still gonna get it done."

If that's not a Hoo-rah talk, then I've never heard one. Actually, I don't think I have ever heard one. My editor sure as heck never gives us Hoo-rah talks, although he occasionally provides donuts.

But wait! There's more! Turns out Larry Michael also noticed the Hoo-rah talks, and took a break from his full-time job as media critic to ask Portis about his demeanor during the post-game coverage.

"Man, we just needed the energy," Portis told the radio crew. "I think overall our energy in our first three games has been lackadaisical. You know, we get behind and everybody get down. I think it was just the energy level, to get it up, no matter what was going on, to continue. I told the guys before, no matter what happens, egg on the guys. Don't walk past a man that's on the field, everybody up and keep fighting."

So let that be a lesson to you in your own place of employment. Egg on your colleagues. Don't be off to the side, relaxing. Give Hoo-rah talks. They work, people.

(Here was the other best Portis bit, when he was asked where the pressure on this team is coming from.

"I think probably the locker room most definitely, because I think every guy in the locker room know that we're capable of being better and playing better than we're showing," he said. "[Also] of course the fans and the media. When your fans booing, you can't help but hear it. And at the same time, every media outlet that you see or get in touch with is against us, you know, Fail to the Redskins, The Redskins Suck. Yeah, we're 2-2, a lot of teams sitting in the same position right now. I think we control our destiny and we've got the opportunity to do something special, and that's what we've got to do. We can't worry about the pressure from outside, we've just got to keep from exploding inside."

I actually did see the large "Fail to the Redskins" headline in The Post. I can only guess that means The Times went with "The Redskins Suck.")

By Dan Steinberg  |  October 6, 2009; 5:11 PM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
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Comments

Dude would be a whole lot more convincing if he actually walked the walk as well as he talked the talk. But the dude has always been a habitual no show for off season conditioning, pre-season practice, exhibition games, mid-week practices and who knows what besides.

Rather, he's typically "sitting over on the sidelines, relaxing." Then he throws teammates under the bus when the timing and execution are off and he can't find the holes.

If he ran even half as well as he yapped, the team would be 4-0 and going strong, rather than 2-2 and fading fast.

His 98 yards against one of the worst run defenses in the league was certainly nothing to crow about -- and his sideline yucking it up during the game was pure theater.

The sooner the team is done playing with this clown, the better. What a loser!

Posted by: Vic1 | October 6, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

If you hate every player on a team, can you still be a fan of that team?

The answer, ladies and gents, is obviously no.

Vic, for the love of god please go root for some other team...seeing as you clearly despise everyone associated with this one.

Posted by: Barno1 | October 6, 2009 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Barno1

I hate no one, even you.

What I hate are lies, hypocrisy and incompetence.

If the shoe fits...

Posted by: Vic1 | October 6, 2009 7:07 PM | Report abuse

You hate everyone associated with the Redskins...so why are you on these blogs?

Posted by: Barno1 | October 6, 2009 7:16 PM | Report abuse

As I said, I hate no one, even you.

I do hate complacency, laziness, lack of effort, lack of discipline and lack of commitment to the highest standards of excellence.

I am also skeptical of empty words, empty promises, missed opportunities and unfulfilled potentials.

Sorry if that offends you, but my observations and opinions are every bit as valid as yours.

Posted by: Vic1 | October 6, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

No, your observations are not valid. Your observation that if Clinton Portis ran better we'd be 4-0 is not a valid point...it's born out of sheer stupidity on your part. Sorry. The guy was averaging 12 carries per game in the first 3 games, because when we got down early Zorn abandoned the run. This is not CP's fault.

How you can be b*tching about the guy who put up 98 yards on the ground last week is beyond me. Like I was saying, if you're this dissatisfied with the players on this team, why don't you find another team to root for?

Posted by: Barno1 | October 6, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

All he needed to do was get a yard and a half. But he couldn't get it done.

"Wrong blocking scheme," said one. "Sellers ran the wrong way," said another.

But nobody mentioned that CP sat on the sidelines "relaxing" all week during practice while the other players were working to get their timing and execution down.

If he gets that yard and a half, the game turns from a loss to a win. That puts the record up to 3-1. It's not 4-0, true, but better than 2-2.

It's called accountability.

Posted by: Vic1 | October 6, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Vic1, he sat on the sidelines during practice last year and that didn't seem to affect him seeing as he rushed for about 1500 yards.

You see, your observations are simply not valid.

Posted by: Barno1 | October 6, 2009 8:34 PM | Report abuse

And despite those 1500 yards, the team finished at 8-8 last season -- and on a (continuing) run of bad games and embarrassing losses -- and the so called run game is only part of the problem.

Posted by: Vic1 | October 6, 2009 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Vic1 thinks it's Portis's fault the team wasn't better than 8-8 last year because he didn't run for 3000 yards.

Posted by: Barno1 | October 6, 2009 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Nice try at derailing the conversation -- but I said what I mean:

CP would be a whole lot more convincing if he actually walked the walk as well as he talked the talk. But the dude has always been a habitual no show for off season conditioning, pre-season practice, exhibition games, mid-week practices and who knows what besides.

Rather, he's typically "sitting over on the sidelines, relaxing." Then he throws teammates under the bus when the timing and execution are off and he can't find the holes.

If CP ran even half as well as he yapped, the team would be 4-0 and going strong, rather than 2-2 and fading fast.

His 98 yards against one of the worst run defenses in the league was certainly nothing to crow about -- and his sideline yucking it up during the game was pure theater.

The sooner the team is done playing with this clown, the better.

Posted by: Vic1 | October 7, 2009 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Have you been watching our games? Portis gets hit before the line of scrimmage everytime we run it. Hardly on him.

Posted by: Pbonds | October 7, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

To me it looks like Portis is washed up and/or out of shape. And the coaches must be thinking something along those lines, because they keep giving chances to guys like Anthony Alridge, Marcus Mason, and Chris Henry. If Portis still had it they wouldn't be looking for guys with younger legs.

The coaches can't criticize Portis and certainly can't bench him because of guaranteed money and his relationship with Snyder. So hopefully he starts practicing soon, because there are lost opportunities out there that aren't Zorn's fault, the O-line's fault, or anyone else's fault -- they are Portis' fault. He needs to get in practice so that he can minimize those problems.

Posted by: jimwest20 | October 7, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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