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Allen's 'people skills' leave an impression

As I tried to learn more about Bruce Allen, the man whose business card now reads "Redskins General Manager," there was a common theme presented by those who've worked closely with him over the years: Everyone praised his people skills. And more than a couple noted that Allen's predecessor at Redskins Park (Vinny Cerrato, in case you've forgotten) wasn't exactly known for those skills.

"[Allen] knows how to work a room, knows how to deal with people," said Doug Williams, the former Redskins' quarterback who's now in charge of professional scouting for Tampa Bay. "I think it's a good fit, especially him and Dan [Snyder]."

"He's a people person," said Ken Herock, who worked with Allen in Oakland's front office. "He'll know how to work with the owner. That will never be a problem."

"He's a good communicator," said Michael Lombardi, who also worked with Allen in Oakland and now writes for NationalFootballPost.com. "He'll be a great spokesman for the team."

That said, I heard from other people who said he wasn't especially forthcoming at times, and he didn't always have a great relationship with the media, often opting not to share the reasoning behind key decisions. In Tampa, reporters wrote how he often operated under a cloak of darkness.

But Williams said he enjoyed his time around Allen.

"Bruce is a guy who's hard not to like," said Williams. "One thing he does have is people skills. Bruce has a good knack with coaches and a great knack with agents. He has a real presence. Bruce could sit down and talk with best of them, smile at you and then tell you, 'No.' But he tells you no, and you're still going to like him."

"I think in this business, because of the number of people you come in contact with, you've got to be able to deal with people. And he does that well."

By Rick Maese  |  December 18, 2009; 9:00 AM ET
 
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Comments

"Allen's 'people skills' leave an impression"


That might be true.

But for right now, I'm impressed with Mr. Daniel Snyder.

It's like he had a moment of clarity and said, "F!ck 4-9, I'm sick of this sh!t."

He pulled the trigger and hired the right guy to do the right job.

Not to many cats would do that.

And I'll be the first to thank him for changing up his game.

Posted by: MistaMoe | December 18, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Most teams have there head coach and GM work together to pick players. I'd much rather have that be Allen/Shannahan then Vinny and anyone.

I think MS would do a good job here, but will see he can't do much worse.

Allen will start knocking off big contracts right away Portis is gone ARE is gone. AH will stay because he's younger and has some upside.

JC will be tendered so he will either play for the Skins or we will get draft picks.

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 6:10 AM | Report abuse
Flounder, please explain to me the advantage of cutting CP. As I understand it, we will have to pay him, no matter whether he's on the roster or not. And we will have a huge cap hit, whether he's on the roster or not. So what would be the advantage of cutting him?

Posted by: frediefritz | December 18, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

That said, I heard from other people who said he wasn't especially forthcoming at times, and he didn't always have a great relationship with the media, often opting not to share the reasoning behind key decisions. In Tampa, reporters wrote how he often operated under a cloak of darkness.


Good this would make him no different then BB and some of the other better GM's in the league. The media might not like him but who cares.

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

This Shannahan news is pretty disappointing. I mean, based on age alone we will probably have to change coaches again in 5 years. Maybe they will just try to plug in Shanny Jr. Overall, not too excited about this part of it.

Posted by: OffseasonChamps | December 18, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

fred, if there is no cap next year whats the harm in cutting portis?

you think he's gonna jump in line, after spending the past 4-5 years doing what CP wants, not practicing, not being in shape??

Sorry, that dog wont hunt..

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:12 AM | Report abuse

So what's the deal here? Is Danny boy going behind Bruce Allen's back already and trying to hire Shanahan?

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | December 18, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Flounder, please explain to me the advantage of cutting CP. As I understand it, we will have to pay him, no matter whether he's on the roster or not. And we will have a huge cap hit, whether he's on the roster or not. So what would be the advantage of cutting him?

Posted by: frediefritz | December 18, 2009 9:09 AM |

No we won't because there will be no cap, did I say I agree with it no I just said it will happen. I think the players and the coaches are fed up with CP's bullsh_t. We have won nothing with him and by the time this team is ready to make a move he will be gone anyway.

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Flounder, please explain to me the advantage of cutting CP. As I understand it, we will have to pay him, no matter whether he's on the roster or not. And we will have a huge cap hit, whether he's on the roster or not. So what would be the advantage of cutting him?

Posted by: frediefritz | December 18, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

_____________________

Portis will leave dead cap space, but they'd save more money against the cap in cutting him than they would by having him stay. I believe the dead cap hit wouldn't be more than what his salary would be, since the only amount that would count against the cap is any bonuses owed.

Plus, the offense seems to function better without him. For the highest paid player on offense, we should expect a better leader. He' the NFL version of Allen Iverson. And his best days are way behind him at this point.

Posted by: dfbovey | December 18, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

offseason, yeah, I hear you, I hate coach's who have a proven track record of success...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Moe,

If we're uncapped next season, I do think some Vets will be dumped - because long term it makes better sense.

I mean, if a play isn't performing but is still costing you money, why not spend the money and get someone who DOES perform? An uncapped season would allow for that.

I think it's pretty clear what I believe about Portis. He was doomed before the season started. He's the sacrifice. It's a standard ploy and it worked.

Are you telling me Portis WOULDN'T want to play for Shanahan? I don't think he'd stay here out of a desire to play here, for us. But to work for his old Coach, sure.

Are you telling me if he did light it up a bit next season, you'd still hold a grudge?

Posted by: DikShuttle | December 18, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

So what's the deal here? Is Danny boy going behind Bruce Allen's back already and trying to hire Shanahan?

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | December 18, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

__________________

It was probably always a package deal. I think there was even an article I read from somewhere last night that Shanahan was talking about bringing Allen with him to Buffalo when he was negotiating with the Bills.

The grand scheme has been in place for a while.

Posted by: dfbovey | December 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

So what's the deal here? Is Danny boy going behind Bruce Allen's back already and trying to hire Shanahan?

Was this serious?? Are you kidding me pa??

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

So what's the deal here? Is Danny boy going behind Bruce Allen's back already and trying to hire Shanahan?

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | December 18, 2009 9:13 AM |

No I'm pretty sure if it is Shanny that was discussed before Allen took the job. They have a history together, but I think Shanny might be a decoy and they may go after someone else.

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

frediefritz

"...please explain to me the advantage of cutting CP."

Easy: CP's biggest fan, St Joe, is gone.

The guy CP was traded for still has game.

CP does not or if he does, his attitude, injury history, and all dominating presence on the offense suggests a parting of ways.

And as for the money: Snyder will see that it's just the cost of doing business.

The team needs a new backfield and tackle pair.

Posted by: MistaMoe | December 18, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

I'm with Moe in that I'm going to give Snyder some credit here. He's obviously been working on this plan for months and has kept it under radar the whole time. By the end of the season, the Skins will be no worse off than any other team, in that they will have their FO together, a HC in place, and a plan to lead the team being formulated. The Skins should hit the ground running in short order and not suffer the agony it went through two years ago. For that I thank you Mr. Snyder.

Posted by: TWISI | December 18, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

The more things change the more they stay the same. We get a new GM, but we seem to be in line for Shanahan, despite his lack of success without Elway. If the redskins want true change they would be better served going with Grimm or Zimmer. Snyder hasnt learned that the big sexy name doesnt work for us. Furthermore its chicken sh*t that they are negotiating with another coach before they officially fire Zorn.Lets hope Jerry beats us to the punch for Shanahan.

Posted by: KingJoffeJoffer | December 18, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

It was probably always a package deal. I think there was even an article I read from somewhere last night that Shanahan was talking about bringing Allen with him to Buffalo when he was negotiating with the Bills.

The grand scheme has been in place for a while.

Posted by: dfbovey | December 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

I did not know that. I thought they didn't like each other.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | December 18, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

I did not know that. I thought they didn't like each other.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | December 18, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

________________

Why'd you think that?

Posted by: dfbovey | December 18, 2009 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Anyone here going to the Eagle Bank Bowl?

Posted by: alex35332 | December 18, 2009 9:27 AM | Report abuse

king, is getting to the AFC championship game with Jake Plummer as your qb, more, or less successful than where we sit today at 4-9.........

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I am not as down on Portis as most of you are, but really there are so many ? Marks with the CBA that it's all most impossible to guess how that will play out. Most people think "uncapped year" and think it wll be open season but from what I read it will be quite complicated. Which is why I am sporting tight pants that we have an NFL quality gm now to help steer the ship.

Posted by: chrislarry | December 18, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

If the redskins want true change they would be better served going with Grimm or Zimmer. Snyder hasnt learned that the big sexy name doesnt work for us. Furthermore its chicken sh*t that they are negotiating with another coach before they officially fire Zorn.Lets hope Jerry beats us to the punch for Shanahan.

Posted by: KingJoffeJoffer | December 18, 2009 9:24 AM |

Really what success has eaither of those guys had as a head coach, that would be none. I'm not saying they would'nt be good head coaches, but it would be a crap shoot. What success has BB had without Brady, what success did Walsh have without Montana or Young.

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I will say it over and over and over again, Pater Charmichael Jr.

Posted by: alex35332 | December 18, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Why'd you think that?

Posted by: dfbovey | December 18, 2009 9:26 AM | Report abuse

I thought I heard that yesterday but it turns out that little Shanny was a coach in Tampa while Allen was the GM. I thought big Shanny wanted to be the GM and coach but I guess Shanny wanted Allen as the GM when he was looking at the Buffalo job. Given this information I'd have to say that it's almost guarenteed that Shanahan will be the new coach.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | December 18, 2009 9:33 AM | Report abuse

So what's the deal here? Is Danny boy going behind Bruce Allen's back already and trying to hire Shanahan?

Was this serious?? Are you kidding me pa??

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Seriously, Snyder and Allen have "been talking about things for weeks" does anybody really think that Allen does know exactly what the plan is? That it isn't either his plan or a plan he full knew about before accepting the job and is on board with it. I'm sure they have a list of 2 or 3 names and in order and that's who they are trying to get. It looks like Shanny is on the top of the list but I'm sure that Allen knew the names and either made the list or is happy with the list and that's why he took the job.

Posted by: zjfr2 | December 18, 2009 9:34 AM | Report abuse

So what's the deal here? Is Danny boy going behind Bruce Allen's back already and trying to hire Shanahan?

Was this serious?? Are you kidding me pa??

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Seriously, Snyder and Allen have "been talking about things for weeks" does anybody really think that Allen doesn't know exactly what the plan is? That it isn't either his plan or a plan he knew full well about before accepting the job and is on board with it. I'm sure they have a list of 2 or 3 names in order and that's who they are trying to get. It looks like Shanny is on the top of the list but I'm sure that Allen knew the names and either made the list or is happy with the list and that's why he took the job.

Posted by: zjfr2 | December 18, 2009 9:34 AM | Report abuse

"If the redskins want true change..."

Snyder just wants to win. That's all he's ever wanted. The folks around here who accuse him of just being in it for the cash couldn't be more wrong. He makes money because he's a terrific salesman, because Washington's a terrific football market, and because Jack Kent Cooke set the team up to prosper. But Dan has always been a true fan, thinking first of victories.

Like most fans, he's full of passionate opinions about players, coaches, GMs, and everything else related to the club. Also like most of us fans, it looks like much of the time he doesn't know what he's talking about.

This team does best when Dan turns away and deals with other things. Let's hope we're about to enter that era.

Posted by: Samson151 | December 18, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

If you think about it there has only been one coach who has had great success without a great QB and that is Gibbs.

Jimmy Johnson he had success why Troy Aikman, no coach is going to win lots of SB without a great QB. Well accept Joe.

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

chrislarry

"I am not as down on Portis as most of you are..."


I'm not 'down' on Portis and don't feel like I'm dumping on him.

But NFL teams let good players go every year.

The decide that whatever it was they found attractive in a guy just doesn't look that good any more.

I look at the draft, see Spiller, Best, Dwyer, and think, "With a right tackle and a strong medium range passing game, that's a more attractive way of playing ball control offense."

"Match that with a good defense, and I got a playoff team."

Posted by: MistaMoe | December 18, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

but we seem to be in line for Shanahan, despite his lack of success without Elway.

Posted by: KingJoffeJoffer | December 18, 2009 9:24 AM


Can you explain this statement to me a little more. From what I can tell, since Elway retired in 1999 the Broncos won the AFC West 5 times. Shanahan's record in that period was 85-59, 26 games above .500 (60% winning percentage). I don't get the not being able to win part. Shanahan has flaws, but this man can coach. More importantly, he knows how to win in the NFL.

Posted by: TWISI | December 18, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

I think Bruce Allen's people skills and personal network is something too easy to overlook. I have read that Vinny just didn't have that network. I hear that most GM's can pick up the phone and get directly connected with another team's GM for discussing trades, player evaluations, heck - even the weather outside. I heard that Vinny didn't have that relationship with a lot of the GM's. I think that explains the limited scope of teams the Redskins sought trades with, and to some extent, the lack of value the Redskins received in trades because the GM's Vinny did have a relationship with knew his options were limited. I think with a Bruce Allen in charge, there's going to be a better working relationship with those other teams and it might ultimately help acquire players more efficiently than Vinny ever could.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | December 18, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

twis, get that crap outta here, this place has no place for that kind of stuff, facts and all.....post something like that again, and I'm hitting report abuse on you.....

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

chucky beeps

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | December 18, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

beeps

Posted by: TWISI | December 18, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

me beep

Posted by: Flounder21 | December 18, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

I'm sure the coach for next year has already been selected. It's just a matter of timing - three games worth - before the announcement is made. I think ALLEN's announcement was in line for some time, possibly two months.

Posted by: glawrence007 | December 18, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

MICHAEL LEE:

"......I heard from other people who said he wasn't especially forthcoming at times, and he didn't always have a great relationship with the media......."

That would be residual from his upbringing - from his father. He lets you see what he wants you to, not the other way 'round. He plays the fiddle MR. LEE - you dance.

Posted by: glawrence007 | December 18, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Since we're prophesying this morning, I see......

A need for a top running back to replace both CP and LB.

A need for a great starting LT, back-up LG, back-up C, starting RT.

Starting slot receiver.

A new DT if ANTHONY MONTGOMERY doesn't begin fulfilling the promise he has. GOLSTON is too small, GRIFFIN getting too old. ALEXANDER good for spot duty only.

An OLB - strong-side to allow ORAKPO to play hand down.

At least one CB. SMOOT is no longer a good cover guy, and ROGERS it seems, only plays when it suits him. TRYON and BARNES are still suspect as cover corners although JUSTIN has had a few moments this season - both ways.

One FS.

MR. ALLEN's #1 picks have NEVER included a QB and we don't need one, short of receiving both a first and second for JASON. Frankly, I wouldn't want to cripple the development of this team at this point by shipping CAMPBELL out. The timing just doesn't feel right.

Posted by: glawrence007 | December 18, 2009 10:04 AM | Report abuse

The changes with the Skins has just started and it will take time and probably most of them will be after the season is over. What gets me is all the people that are still complaining and beotching about the team. Give it time!

Welcome Bruce Allen! Nice to have another Allen aboard and best wishes in your new position! HAIL!!!

Posted by: ladyredskins | December 18, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't matter who the HC or GM is u can't win untill u have a qb,and trust me we don't have 1!!!

Posted by: akprotv | December 19, 2009 4:53 AM | Report abuse

Welcome to another Monday night football Skins fans, last time we were on Jason Campbell looked so scared before kickoff I feared he would collapse and die right there on fed-ex field, as for Zorn he spotted Philly a seven point lead by giving Mcnabb the ball even-though his team won the toss. Tonight I look forward to much of the same show this pair has put up in the NFC east(loose)since they both arrived, just wondering what Campbell,s career highs are? can anyone honestly remember any game this team won due to Jason,s play? I sadly await your true answers.

Posted by: zimife1999 | December 21, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Dan Snyder simply wants to win, no one remembers that this man was an avid Redskins fan prior to buying the team, bad luck and some ill fated signings coupled with some really horrible Quarterbacking has derailed every effort this man has made, he,s paid out the most cash, spent millions on a new stadium, practice facilities and doled out millions to some sorry coaches, my heart bleeds for this fan owner of a man!!

Posted by: zimife1999 | December 21, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

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