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A short history of Mike Shanahan benching his quarterback

By Dan Steinberg

(By David Zalubowski - AP)

As you've probably read, former Broncos QB Jake Plummer weighed in on the Donovan McNabb situation this week, in a long Yahoo! profile. Here's part of the relevant quote:

"I had a coach that, regardless of how well I thought I was playing or how well the majority of fans across the country thought I was playing, it was never good enough for him," Plummer said, not bitter but very matter-of-fact. "And that kind of gets frustrating.

"It just seemed like every game I could have completed these four more passes or these five more shots here and it would have been perfect. And that just wasn't my personality....But Shanahan wanted perfection and he wore a lot of us down there."

Plummer went on to say that Shanahan "is still searching for John Elway," but in fact, Shanahan said this week that he also benched Elway five or six times in Denver. (He meant while he was an assistant coach, in case there's any confusion.) Figuring this deserved a bit more research, I present a short and possibly incomplete history of Mike Shanahan benching his starting quarterback.

Schroeder vs. Beuerlein: Up by four points going into the fourth quarter against the Chiefs in October of 1988, Raiders Coach Mike Shanahan benched Jay Schroeder in favor of former starter Steve Beuerlein. Beuerlein then led two scoring drives and the Raiders won.

"Jay will be our quarterback," Shanahan said after the game. "We're not going to have that kind of controversy every week as most people try to have as soon as you put another quarterback in. We're not going to rotate quarterbacks as soon as someone throws a few incomplete passes. It's got to be a gut situation and a gut feeling. And that was my gut feeling."

The Raiders had recently traded Jim Lachey and draft picks to acquire Schroeder, and over the next week, Shanahan stated definitively that Schroeder would remain the starter. The next week, he changed his mind after a second straight benching.

"This is not to take anything away from Jay and his potential as a quarterback on this team," Shanahan said, after announcing the switch. "But anytime you miss a quarterback camp and you miss a preseason, you get put in a situation that is tough and not as fair as it should be. It's just not comfortable for him....I've got a lot of confidence in Jay, but the bottom line for our team right now is the second half of the season and the ability to win, and right now, I believe the best direction to go is with Steve Beuerlein."

About a month later, he switched back to Schroeder.

Brister vs. Griese: Two weeks before the Broncos' 1999 season opener, Denver Coach Mike Shanahan benched Bubby Brister in favor of Brian Griese. Brister took the news hard; Shanahan said he had to fight back tears.

"If we didn't feel like Brian could take us all the way, we wouldn't have made the decision," Shanahan said. "'It was one of the hardest decisions I've had to make, to bring him in and tell him. He didn't miss an off-season workout. He studied his rear end off. It was the opportunity of a lifetime, but I had to take a look at what I thought was in the best interest of our football team."

Brister stayed away from the team for several days, then returned with an emotional press conference.

"If it was just between me and Mike, I probably wouldn't have come back," Brister said. "But I can't walk out on (Bill) Romanowski and (Ed) McCaffrey and Brian (Griese) and the guys. I can't do it; can't do it. Now if it was a one-on-one card game and Mike dealt me that hand, I would probably do like they did back in the old days....It was my job. There was never any competition, a situation where one guy gets the first half and the other guy gets the second half, or vice versa. I am still (4-0) as a starter around here during the regular season, when it counts. That's what is upsetting, because I have earned the right to start opening day, but Mike obviously doesn't feel that way. I don't agree with him at all."

"Everybody's job is on the line, everybody's on our football team," Shanahan responded. "There's not one position on our football team that someone has that position won. I don't care if you're a six-year Pro Bowl player or if you're a free agent and you're starting for the first year. We have competition, which I've shared with everybody all along."

And with reports of locker room discontent, Shanahan told the New York Times that controversy can be a good thing.

"I'm not trying to create it. But I embrace it," he said. "Now, I could have done it the easy way. I could have let Bubby start, just play the whole thing out, but that was not best for our football team. Our players don't know the position like I do. As far as Bubby or any of them, I'm not trying to be popular. I'm doing it for the team."

The Broncos lost their first four games, and Shanahan then benched Griese in favor of Brister.

"He gives us the best chance to win now," Shanahan said. "We're not playing for the future. We're trying to do the best we can right now and obviously trying to find a way to win a game."

"I was surprised, but it wasn't my decision to make," Griese said. "So he made the decision, and I've got to live with it."

But Brister was hurt before the next game, which Griese started and won. The Broncos were fined $25,000 for failing to properly disclose the Brister injury. After another win as the starter, Shanahan said Griese would remain the starter even if Brister were healthy. The Broncos finished the season 6-10 -- one of only two losing seasons during Shanahan's tenure -- and the coach later said he had mishandled the Brister situation.

"I made a mistake in not telling them more specifically why I was making the change," he said. "I should have done a better job of telling everybody at that time why I was making the decision.You don't always do everything right. If I had to do it over again, that's what I would have done. I apologized to the team for not telling them why I made it....Obviously, any time there's speculation in radio, TV and the press, any time you have that type of controversy, it surely doesn't help the team."

Griese vs. Beuerlein: With the Broncos leading the Rams by three late in their 2002 season opener, Shanahan instructed Steve Beuerlein to warm up. Apparently, the backup was told he was entering the game, and Griese was told he was done. But then the Rams missed a short field goal, which prompted Shanahan to stick with Griese.

"I felt like we would have needed a spark [if the Rams made the kick]," Shanahan said. "Brian had a quarter in there when things went flat, and he was really pressured. All of a sudden when they missed the field goal, I said to (Griese), 'It's yours. Stay in there and get it done.' "

Over the next week, Shanahan said he wouldn't let hurt feelings get in the way of his personnel decisions.

"I can't worry about those things," he said. "I have to find a way to win."

The Broncos and Griese were 8-7 heading into their finale, when he was benched in favor of Beuerlein.

"You've got to have people who go out there and perform," Shanahan said. "Our decisions will be based on people performing, not money."

"When I was growing up as a kid, I always wanted to be a fireman. I never dreamed of being a football player," Griese said after his benching. "All my life people have told me that I can't do something, and I always thought that was my motivation to prove people wrong. But when I did accomplish something, it was such an empty feeling because it really didn't matter what everybody said about me. It mattered how I felt inside and what I accomplished for me. And it's no different here. No matter what people say about me, I'm going to continue on and find the strength to bounce back from this. For me, not for anybody else."

Griese was released after the season.

Plummer vs. Cutler: After a two-game losing streak sullied a 7-2 start to the 2006 season, Jake Plummer was benched in favor of Jay Cutler.

"A lot of times I get too much credit and too much blame. Right now, the blame is there. I didn't make the plays," Plummer said after his final game as the starter.

"I like the way he handles himself, and I think he gives us the best chance to win," Shanahan said of Cutler. "This hasn't been made because of (Cutler's) draft status, I'll tell you that. It's about winning, and he's our best chance."

Cutler went 2-3 as a starter and the Broncos missed the playoffs.

By Dan Steinberg  | November 5, 2010; 11:11 AM ET
Categories:  Media, Redskins  
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Comments

None of those stories are about Elway. So did Shanahan just make that up?

Posted by: amorris525 | November 5, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

You also didn't bring up when as the 49ers OC, Shanahan benched Steve Young for Elvis Grbac.

Posted by: TheTris | November 5, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

I must say, this piece gave me warm and fuzzy feelings as I anticipate the remainder of this season. *groans*

Posted by: Tiffany010 | November 5, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Shanahan Sucks! Makes me wonder about the whole Albert fiasco. Who was really to blame? Somthing about that man disturbs me.

Posted by: ivyleague | November 5, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Can we officially say that Shanahan is one of the most over-rated coaches in football? I don't discount his success, but a great coach will find ways to win with the players they have. Gibbs won with Theisman, Williams, and Rypien. Not a hall-of-famer in the bunch.

Posted by: rodeorob | November 5, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

At the risk of being "that guy," the Broncos were 7-7 when Shanny benched Griese in '02.

Beuerlein started wins over Oakland and Arizona. Denver finished 9-7, missing the wild car on tiebreakers.

Posted by: McBride33 | November 5, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Jay Schroeder is still Big Forehead Country.

Mike Shanahan looks like a weasel.

Posted by: malcolmyoung1 | November 5, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

>>>I don't discount his success, but a great coach will find ways to win with the players they have. Gibbs won with Theisman, Williams, and Rypien. Not a hall-of-famer in the bunch.

That's true, but Bobby Beathard ensured those 3 Gibbs QBs had a variety of OK-to-good-to-Hall of Fame wide receivers to throw to and an O-line full of Hall of Famers and a consistent/reliable running game.

imho it's Shanahan the de facto GM who's failing the team by thinking any QB change's going to make a difference with our team's current O-line and wide receiver situation. I realize he couldn't probably fix all those holes in one season but he seemed oblivious to them.

Posted by: blackjack65 | November 5, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Dan. I have a suggestion. I think we have pretty well established that Shanahan has a history of benching QBs. Let's move on. Find something else to write about already. Its a minor event when you think about. Bad performances gets you yanked

Posted by: erthdog | November 5, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar | November 5, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Can we officially say that Shanahan is one of the most over-rated coaches in football? I don't discount his success, but a great coach will find ways to win with the players they have. Gibbs won with Theisman, Williams, and Rypien. Not a hall-of-famer in the bunch.

Posted by: rodeorob | November 5, 2010 12:51 PM |

Of coaches with multiple superbowl wins only a few get there with different QBs:
Gibbs couldn't win with JC or Collins.

Parcells won with Simms and Hostetler but couldn't win with Bledsoe either in NE or Dallas, Testaverde either in Dallas or NYJ, ODonnell.

Jimmy Johnson won with Aikman but couldn't with anyone else.

Belichek has only won with Brady.

Noll won with Bradshaw

Walsh won with Montana and but not with Kemp.

Lombardi won with Starr but no one else. So is it impressive that the Gibbs managed to win with 3 different QBs yes. But he somehow managed to forget what did not change during that run. The O line. Grimm 11 seasons, May 9, Jacoby 12, Bostic 13, Starke 12 (4 with the hogs). In the words of the ESPN crowd.
C'mon Man!!!!
The Skins were awful last year. Have a little faith.

Posted by: Hank4 | November 5, 2010 1:50 PM | Report abuse

It is impressive that Gibbs won with different QBs but the other coaches didn't were able to get a good QB and keep him for awhile and that helps too.

It is about time for the Redskins to have a qb that can be a good player for several years in a row.

Posted by: Pensfans | November 5, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

#2
Donovan leaving the Skins after the season.

The Redskins can and will franchise Donovan if the long term deal is not worked out. If he is somewhere else next year the Redskins will recoup the draft picks they used to obtain him. All the people who think he is just going to leave resulting in lost draft picks are being foolish and should know the rules better.

---
Personally, I have heard for years from friends and family who are die hard Eagle fans the complaints about the deficiencies of Donovan McNabb. I think he is the kind of guy who wants to get better. I know he wants a better team around him. I think Coach Shanahan will make him better. I think Coach Shanahan will put a better team around him (the blocking must get much better or it doesn't matter who is QB).

I have always responded to their complaints with, "please send him to us". I hope I was and am right.

---

After decades of foolishness, impulsiveness, and mistakes guiding the Redskins (sometimes all at the same time) rather than winning leadership, I just hope Shanny stays the course in what HE wants to do. If he fails, he fails doing it his way. And Bruce Allen's way, too.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 3:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar
----------------------------
So the head coach benches a QB and puts in another that according to you he knows gave the team about 0% of a chance of winning the game? I didn't want to do it but you left me no choice.. I have to get my inner Herm on...

HELLOOOOO! YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar
----------------------------
So the head coach benches a QB and puts in another that according to you he knows gave the team about 0% of a chance of winning the game? I didn't want to do it but you left me no choice.. I have to get my inner Herm on...

HELLOOOOO! YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar
----------------------------
So the head coach benches a QB and puts in another that according to you he knows gave the team about 0% of a chance of winning the game? I didn't want to do it but you left me no choice.. I have to get my inner Herm on...

HELLOOOOO! YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar
----------------------------
So the head coach benches a QB and puts in another that according to you he knows gave the team about 0% of a chance of winning the game? I didn't want to do it but you left me no choice.. I have to get my inner Herm on...

HELLOOOOO! YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

#2
Donovan leaving the Skins after the season.

The Redskins can and will franchise Donovan if the long term deal is not worked out. If he is somewhere else next year the Redskins will recoup the draft picks they used to obtain him. All the people who think he is just going to leave resulting in lost draft picks are being foolish and should know the rules better.

---
Personally, I have heard for years from friends and family who are die hard Eagle fans the complaints about the deficiencies of Donovan McNabb. I think he is the kind of guy who wants to get better. I know he wants a better team around him. I think Coach Shanahan will make him better. I think Coach Shanahan will put a better team around him (the blocking must get much better or it doesn't matter who is QB).

I have always responded to their complaints with, "please send him to us". I hope I was and am right.

---

After decades of foolishness, impulsiveness, and mistakes guiding the Redskins (sometimes all at the same time) rather than winning leadership, I just hope Shanny stays the course in what HE wants to do. If he fails, he fails doing it his way. And Bruce Allen's way, too.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar
----------------------------
So the head coach benches a QB and puts in another that according to you he knows gave the team about 0% of a chance of winning the game? I didn't want to do it but you left me no choice.. I have to get my inner Herm on...

HELLOOOOO! YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to withhold my judgment on this entire situation until January.

And I think for the Mike Shanahan haters out there, you guys really don't want to think about alternatives in the coaching department. Shanahan clearly had something in mind when he benched McNabb, we'll see if his ploy worked down the stretch.

I for one am glad that a head coach had the nuts to bench someone as respected as NcNabb for poor performance, although Rex Grossman gave us no chance to win and everyone including Mike knew that.

Again, withhold your judgment on this until the season plays out.

Posted by: rademaar
----------------------------
So the head coach benches a QB and puts in another that according to you he knows gave the team about 0% of a chance of winning the game? I didn't want to do it but you left me no choice.. I have to get my inner Herm on...

HELLOOOOO! YOU PLAY TO WIN THE GAME!

Posted by: 6thsense79 | November 5, 2010 3:22 PM | Report abuse

#2
Donovan leaving the Skins after the season.

The Redskins can and will franchise Donovan if the long term deal is not worked out. If he is somewhere else next year the Redskins will recoup the draft picks they used to obtain him. All the people who think he is just going to leave resulting in lost draft picks are being foolish and should know the rules better.

---
Personally, I have heard for years from friends and family who are die hard Eagle fans the complaints about the deficiencies of Donovan McNabb. I think he is the kind of guy who wants to get better. I know he wants a better team around him. I think Coach Shanahan will make him better. I think Coach Shanahan will put a better team around him (the blocking must get much better or it doesn't matter who is QB).

I have always responded to their complaints with, "please send him to us". I hope I was and am right.

---

After decades of foolishness, impulsiveness, and mistakes guiding the Redskins (sometimes all at the same time) rather than winning leadership, I just hope Shanny stays the course in what HE wants to do. If he fails, he fails doing it his way. And Bruce Allen's way, too.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

#2
Donovan leaving the Skins after the season.

The Redskins can and will franchise Donovan if the long term deal is not worked out. If he is somewhere else next year the Redskins will recoup the draft picks they used to obtain him. All the people who think he is just going to leave resulting in lost draft picks are being foolish and should know the rules better.

---
Personally, I have heard for years from friends and family who are die hard Eagle fans the complaints about the deficiencies of Donovan McNabb. I think he is the kind of guy who wants to get better. I know he wants a better team around him. I think Coach Shanahan will make him better. I think Coach Shanahan will put a better team around him (the blocking must get much better or it doesn't matter who is QB).

I have always responded to their complaints with, "please send him to us". I hope I was and am right.

---

After decades of foolishness, impulsiveness, and mistakes guiding the Redskins (sometimes all at the same time) rather than winning leadership, I just hope Shanny stays the course in what HE wants to do. If he fails, he fails doing it his way. And Bruce Allen's way, too.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

#2
Donovan leaving the Skins after the season.

The Redskins can and will franchise Donovan if the long term deal is not worked out. If he is somewhere else next year the Redskins will recoup the draft picks they used to obtain him. All the people who think he is just going to leave resulting in lost draft picks are being foolish and should know the rules better.

---
Personally, I have heard for years from friends and family who are die hard Eagle fans the complaints about the deficiencies of Donovan McNabb. I think he is the kind of guy who wants to get better. I know he wants a better team around him. I think Coach Shanahan will make him better. I think Coach Shanahan will put a better team around him (the blocking must get much better or it doesn't matter who is QB).

I have always responded to their complaints with, "please send him to us". I hope I was and am right.

---

After decades of foolishness, impulsiveness, and mistakes guiding the Redskins (sometimes all at the same time) rather than winning leadership, I just hope Shanny stays the course in what HE wants to do. If he fails, he fails doing it his way. And Bruce Allen's way, too.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

#1
Mike Shanahan pulled John Elway 4 times for ineffectiveness and replaced him with Gary Kubiak.
There are many people who need to read that again.
Mike Shanahan pulled John Elway 4 times for ineffectiveness and replaced him with Gary Kubiak.
Many people (not me) think Elway may be the best QB in NFL history. If Shanny had not led the Broncos (and John Elway) to 2 Super Bowl victories then these same people would not have any leverage to argue that point.
Now here we are in Shannys first year with a great QB again (I think the best QB in DC since Joe Theismann). But, at times, Donovan does those things that he got criticized for in Philly. Low passes to open receivers, not getting his feet set, trying to do too much himself. There were other criticisms, too.
Yes, Shanny always wants Donovan to play his best. He has played less than at his best during stretches of games this season. The coach holds him and all his players accountable. Like he did with Elway, he will remove them if they are not effective.
He pulled McNabb after he threw a late pass into triple coverage resulting in a terrible interception. He got mad; coaches do that when players make dumb mistakes. He had watched his QB go through one of his bad stretches the whole 4th quarter.
Mike Shanahan pulled Donovan McNabb for ineffectiveness and replaced him with Rex Grossman.
Maybe Donovan responds like Elway did, maybe not. Maybe McNabb really doesn't want to improve as a player. Maybe he wants special treatment when he is playing poorly. Either way, he does not and should not like this.
Clearly removing McNabb didn't work out to be the best move (I did not like the move when he made it). But, those who think that this move wasn't calculated are not looking at the coach's history. The facts that should be clear to anyone is that it was done prior to the bye week so he gets to rest those legs and against the team that let him go, the Eagles waiting for Donovan on Monday Night Football with the whole country watching. Everyone also seems to want to down play the motivation all of this will provide a talented, proud man and team leader.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Sorry for the multiple post. Computer problems.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Sorry for the multiple post. Computer problems.

Posted by: MDterpfan | November 5, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

I will be waiting to see when he benches the woeful offensive line!!

Posted by: 15of18 | November 5, 2010 6:12 PM | Report abuse

I will be waiting to see when he benches the woeful offensive line!!

Posted by: 15of18 | November 5, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

love the morons on here hating hating hating...

suddenly albert looks angry & motivated for the first time since he got to dc.

we'll see if #5's doughy butt comes back next week with a vengeance too.

Posted by: JohnnyBlades | November 5, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

We need to quell once and for all this idea that's constantly tossed around: Shanahan is only had success because of John Elway.
Watching PTI yesterday, it says a lot about the degradation of Michael Wilbon's sports intelligence when he even espouses this idea.

In fact, let's go down the list of coaches with multiple Super Bowl wins and see who their starting QBs were:

Don Shula: Bob Griese (HoF)
Tom Landry: Roger Staubach (HoF)
Chuck Noll: Terry Bradshaw (HoF)
Joe: Theismann, Williams, Rypien
Bill Belichick: Tom Brady (future HoF)
Bill Walsh: Joe Montana (HoF)
Bill Parcells: Phil Simms, Jeff Hostetler
Vince Lombardi: Bart Starr (HoF)
Tom Flores: Jim Plunkett
Jimmy Johnson: Troy Aikman (HoF)
George Seifert: Montana, Steve Young (HoF)
Mike Shanahan: John Elway (HoF)

That's 12 coaches winning a total of 29 Super Bowls with 15 QBs, of which 9 are in the HoF. Among those coaches, only three won without HoF quarterbacks (for a total of seven Super Bowls). Are you telling me the remaining nine derived their success only because they had HoF QBs?

You will rarely have success with a sub-par QB like Trent Dilfer (a guy who came in as a backup in Week 8 and threw as many INTs as TDs). Dan Reeves went to 3 title games with Elway and never won, and that is one of the arguments that is keeping him from enshrinement. Elway became much more efficient under Shanahan. If we divide his career into quarters, Elway's TD-INT ratio essentially doubles under Shanahan's tenure:

Seasons 1-4: 66/65, 1.02
" 5-8: 69/63, 1.10
" 9-12: 64/49, 1.31
" 13-16: 101/49, 2.06

Success rarely comes without a good QB, and good QBs rarely win without a good coach.

Posted by: MyPostIDisAfake | November 6, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

love the morons on here hating hating hating...

suddenly albert looks angry & motivated for the first time since he got to dc.

we'll see if #5's doughy butt comes back next week with a vengeance too.

Posted by: JohnnyBlades | November 5, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse


Precisely.

I'm dumbfounded by how many blinded Redskins fans there are around these parts. Shanahan gets Albert in shape, motivated, and working his @ss off in games to play at a level he NEVER did last season, and people want to blame him for 'hurting' the team with that situation? All I can do is shake my head...

Then I hear people on talk radio shows calling in saying they'd rather keep McNabb than Shanahan. Whaaaaat? Donovan McNabb? He who has the 7th lowest QB rating among all starters? Who's thrown more INTs than TDs? Who's completed 57% of his passes? Who's played downright AWFUL since week 2 against Houston? THAT'S the man you want to hold above your head as a prized possession and fire one of the greatest coaches of all-time for?

And yes, Shanahan is one of the greatest coaches of all-time. 2 SB rings as a HC in Denver, 1 SB rings as an OC in San Francisco, 2 more SB appearances as an assistant in Denver (under Reeves), 2 losing seasons in 12 years in Denver, took the Broncos to the AFC title game and a 13-3 record with Jake effing Plummer at QB, one of the highest winning percentages of all-time for any coach in history; this man knows how to win. That's what he does.

But yea, 34-year old, washed-up McNabb is who we want over him (*rolls eyes*).

Now, that's not to say Shanahan is perfect. I certainly don't agree with his decision to bench McNabb last week. It was a mistake, through and through. But that doesn't nearly warrant the reaction I've seen and heard over the last week of people calling for Shanahan's head. That's pure idiocy.

Not to mention, the whole benching McNabb fiasco deflected the attention away from the true problem to begin with; McNabb is playing AWFUL right now! And has been for weeks.

I truly hope this is a wake-up call for him. I still believe McNabb has the ability to turn it around this year, but he's got to go out and actually do it before any credit is given. As of right now, I wouldn't touch his supposed contract extension with a 10-foot pole if I were Bruce Allen. Jason Campbell is outperforming him in Oakland with a worse o-line, WRs, TEs, defense, and supporting cast in general (McFadden notwithstanding - who is an absolute monster).

This bye has left us with too much time to dwell on little things right now. We're 4-4, have 4 division games ahead of us, and hold our fate in our hands. Let's get it done, fellas.

Posted by: psps23 | November 6, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: philarmy | November 6, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

According to this article, 90% of Shanny's QB moves have failed. Is it possible he's an egotistical nut case? Suddenly he's looking pretty bad. They brought a pro bowl QB in only to bench him in a two minute drill to win the game? Isn't that why Nabb is here? To win those games? I always thought Shanny was a good coach, but come to think of it, he did only win with Elway. Hell, Vinny Cerrato could have won with Elway!!!!

Posted by: Riggo2 | November 9, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

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