Snyder says he's "extremely hands off"
The general tone of Alex Marvez's FoxSports.com piece about the Redskins this week oozes positivity.
The team's current front office, Marvez writes, "is beyond reproach." He writes that the Skins struggled with discipline last year, but that "all of that has changed." And after discussing past heavy-handedness from the owner's box, Marvez maintains that "those days are gone."
It's on this latter point that at least a few readers have found a negative. Snyder talked to Marvez, and told him that with his current front-office setup, it's not hard to fade into the background.
"I learned - and I think this has to do with Joe Gibbs - the most important thing for me personally is to have a head coach who is extremely competent," said Snyder, referring to Zorn's renowned predecessor. "That's what I've got with Mike. It creates an opportunity for me to be extremely hands off and not have to worry."
The "extremely hands off" and "not have to worry" parts will be pleasing to a great deal of Redskins fans. But the Joe Gibbs business seems a bit curious, if nothing else. As SB Nation D.C. put it:
How on earth can he say he learned this lesson from Joe Gibbs, when he didn't apply it until after Jim Zorn? Shouldn't he have said that he learned from Jim Zorn that a football team needs a competent head coach because after Zorn's spectacular flame-out Snyder realized he needed someone who actually knew what they were doing?
Out of curiosity, I went back and looked at Snyder's comments the day he introduced Zorn to D.C. He seemed to suggest then that Zorn was the right choice. I'm assuming he thought Zorn was competent.
"I said we'd be thorough and we'd conduct a full process and we did," Snyder said. "We did just what we said we'd do. What we were looking for was a coach with characteristics. And our characteristics were starting with character, a character person. Joe [Gibbs] has such character and I've learned so much not only about him, but about what I and the Redskins want in the future.
"We also talked about leadership, great leadership, but it starts with character. It starts with a person's character, their integrity, their smarts, their drive, their energy, their passion. We ended up with the right guy. We ended with a person that has all of those plus much, much more."
Some of this is quibbling over semantics, but the fact is, Snyder vouched for the last coach. If Zorn turned out not to be competent enough for Snyder to be hands-off, that's on the people who hired him. It's one thing for all of us yahoos to suggest that Zorn was not a competent head coach; it's another thing for the man who dubbed him "the right guy" to now say that.
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