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Framing the Past to Evaluate the Future

It's only natural that we compare the present to the past. And Jim Zorn is about to enter his first season as an NFL coach in the shadow of a legend, Hall of Famer Joe Gibbs. But in fairness to Zorn, I think some perspective is in order. If you forget Gibbs 1.0 and look just at what the man accomplished - or failed to accomplish - in the last four years without sentimentality and in the context of the modern, billion-dollar NFL, I think the task of "replacing" Gibbs seems a lot less daunting.

Gibbs's stated goal was to return the franchise to glory, establish a baseline of sustained success, and win a championship. That did not occur, and to me much of what has transpired in the past 7-8 months directly repudiates the way things were done before, from gutting Gibbs's staff to changing the entire offensive philosophy and switching to a West Coast style.

It was clear that change was needed, and in my mind Zorn must only be competitive and consistent to emerge from the shadow of the previous regime. I'm interested to see through which prism most of you guys view the past four years, and if the, "Hey, we made the playoffs twice, so way to go, Joe" camp reigns. To me, that's a partially defeatist mentality born more of years of failure than a shining compliment in this era of football parity.

In 2004, Gibbs overhauled the entire roster, often at the expense of truly evaluating the existing talent, and continued an era of gluttonous spending on a top-heavy roster and bloated coaching staff. (Again, fast forward to this past off-season, when the team hoarded draft picks, made few big moves, actually purged the coaching staff and hired cheaper coaches without the big-name splashes of the past).

The team won six games that season with an offense so stunted that it led to the top WR wanting out and tackle Jon Jansen opining on ESPN that it was was stuck in the early '90s. Those six wins were primarily because of the defense, and if Gregg Williams hadn't coaxed a remarkable top-three finish (best in the NFC) from a largely no-name defense, that 2004 season might have been truly tarnished Gibbs's legacy with the ignominy of something like 4-12 or 3-13.

In 2005 things finally clicked in the second half, and Gibbs found an offensive approach that worked. The Redskins went from 5-6 to 10-6 and reached the playoffs. Let's not forget the bevy of sacks, turnovers and defensive scores that catapulted the Redskins to the five-straight wins to reach the playoffs (along with a stout running game), either.

Then Gibbs threw all of that away, adding Al Saunders and spending freely on the most infamous off-season free agent/trade classes in recent history. The season was a 5-11 washout, the quarterback position remained in utter flux, and this time the defense couldn't bail Gibbs out, with injuries and fissures and problems with the system compounding the problems. The team still looked ultra-conservative offensively, Saunders and QB Coach Bill Lazor were struggling to fit into the overall offensive staff, players were serving too many masters and game day remained an adventure. Plays came into the huddle late and procedural penalties were the norm (note the lack of attempted deception or trickery and preponderance of pre-snap motion in this new offense).

It was more of the same in 2007 until the final month, with the team failing to string together even two or three wins for long stretches (hardly uncommon during Gibbs 2.0). Only then, with Todd Collins, the QB Saunders preferred for his system all along at the helm, did the offense show a pulse. Gibbs's leadership qualities shone in the wake of Sean Taylor's death, but, again, it was the defense that rose to overcome that adversity. The unit thrived despite losing its best player and rallied behind Williams, unquestionably the person in the organization who knew Sean best, spent the most time with him, and always wasTaylor's biggest supporter.

The Buffalo game, with more blown in-game decisions and the timeout fiasco, was obviously the low point, but the players didn't quit on Gibbs and for the second time the team got into the playoffs with a late run, winning four in a row this time.

But the playoffs - where the best of the best are judged - were again ugly. The Redskins went 1-2 in the postseason under Gibbs, despite spending more on players and coaches than anyone else in the game, and all three times the offense was anemic, if not worse. The one postseason victory, at Tampa, was all defense (the Skins produced the fewest yards ever in an NFL playoff victory). Both losses to Seattle were marred by an inability to move the ball for much of the game.

The Redskins still have not had a home playoff game since 1999. The franchise has yet to put together consecutive seasons of nine wins or more since 1991-92 (the end of Gibbs 1.0). And when you look at the team now, almost all of Williams's staff remains in tact, while the offense is once again trying to establish itself with another new leader. Williams's legacy is clear - his former lieutenant is running the defense and admittedly doing so within the system Williams established - while all of Gibbs's number-based offense is out the window.

Zorn inherits the chore of still trying to develop a stable QB for the franchise, with Campbell entering his fourth year, and trying to give this squad a real, year-in, year-out offensive identity again. Everyone at Redskins Park is eager to embrace change on the offensive side of the ball, and obviously the hope is that the unit can become a force, rather than lingering around the middle of the pack (ranked 15-17th) as we saw at best the past four years.

So, what's a fair expectation for Zorn? Would six wins - matching Gibbs's total from 2004, with a lively offense that starts taking flight in the second half of the season with Campbell playing well - be horrible? Personally, I don't think so, especially not when you consider how dramatically improved the NFC East is compared to its lowly state in 2004 (and the fact Zorn gets a playoff schedule, while Gibbs was given a much easier slate in 2004 after Spurrier's boys fell apart in 2003).

Would people be nearly as willing to put up with him having the kind of game-day meltdowns we saw the last four years (even though Zorn is doing this all for the first time, unlike his predecessor)? Would 31-36 (including the playoffs), with no division titles, be considered a cause for celebration? Maybe I'm not being nostalgic enough, and maybe I'm in the minority, but I think if anyone not named Joe Jackson Gibbs had coached the past four years, he would have been gone after Year Three. I think Zorn deserves to be judged against what's passed for success in the incarnation of this franchise under the current ownership group, and not the past.

By Jason La Canfora  |  August 14, 2008; 12:18 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: McIntosh, Rogers to Play Saturday
Next: Landry Will Skip Trip; QB Rotation Changes



Posted by: brownwood26 | August 14, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

I am not one to post often, but this was very well written.

I am 46 so I was all over Gibbs 1.0.

If nothing else, Gibbs 2.0 finally got my pre-teen nephews to stop asking, "Oh my God Uncle Joe...HOW can you LIKE the Redskins???".

Posted by: Joeyskins from NY | August 14, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

To me, whats in the past, is in the past, I'm not going back, rather looking forward. I think JZorn is going to be successful with this club.

Posted by: Greg | August 14, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Kid Bro Sweets | August 14, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

The Truth is too young to remember the first era of Gibbs, but The Truth cannot say a bad thing about Gibbs. The Truth says Gibbs is the the Redskins as Herschel or Dooley is to the Bulldogs!

The Truth also says "Six wins!?!". The Truth is not counting on a 6 win season this year, The Truth wants double digits.

Posted by: The Truth | August 14, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

also got a question, how bad are the obstructed view seats in FedEx? I'm looking specifically at row 226 under some weird shady thing...never been there

are they decent seats??

Posted by: The Truth in 1st person | August 14, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

+++Jasno reported back in February that McIntosh had a potential degenerative condition in both knees. Even a beast can't reverse that. Perhaps I'm being a bit pessimistic (and over-reacting) in suggesting they look elsewhere, but it seemed that he was getting dinged up a lot before he brought it last season.

Posted by: creativefunk | August 14, 2008 11:50 AM++++

Yeah well it's too late now. Archuletta is no longer available to play LB.

Regarding Marcus. Yeah, hold onto him til his tank is drained entirely. If he's cut, NE will pick him up and he'll play five more years there. Samo for Fletch.

Posted by: Corkczar | August 14, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

I just tried to post a comment about all this misinformation that JLaC used in this story and it gave me a message that said the comment is being held until the "blog owner" can review it. I guess we're being censored now.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 14, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

^^ Then how did you just post??

Posted by: The Truth in 3rd person | August 14, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Zorn deserves 3 years at the least as long as things don't look like a clown show and he's winning atleast 6-8 games.

the scary thing is

zorn being a rookie head coach,has put on a better training camp,and has a much more organized and streamline coaching staff than gibbs ever had in his 2nd stint.

Gibbs was the players coach in the sense he bent to veteran players wants and needs,such as fewer 2 a days.

zorn comes in and in 1 training camp has more 2-a-days than gibbs 2.0 had in 4 YEARS!

not to mention zorn has said certain RB's won't be allowed to come out of the game when they want to.

Posted by: Ron Burgandy | August 14, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Your average Skins fan will probably be calling for Zorn's head if they lose two preseason games.

Anyway, they're going 19-0 this year; Dannyboy has a deal with Tom Terrific to load up the rest of the league with evil alien spirits. By the time they catch on, it will be too late to audit them out.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Here's the short list: 13 returning coaches, only 4 new, some promotions, some retirements- not exactly gutting.

Overhauled the entire offensive philosophy? Didn't we keep the same running game? To me that's overhauling half the offense.

JLaC in classic form.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 14, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Sure, play Mac and Rogers for a few plays. They could as easily get hurt in practice as in a real game, and it will be a reward for their perserverance and hard work.

Uh, might want to wait until Farvre is out of the game. Last thing I want to see is Rogers, double moved by Coles, on the cover of the Daily News as the Jet strides into the end zone.

Posted by: Corkczar | August 14, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: The Truth in 3rd person | August 14, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Some have half the field obstructed truth...just send DS a message, no one get those seats... that is a travesty...

Posted by: Zebra | August 14, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

^^ Then how did you just post??

Posted by: The Truth in 3rd person | August 14, 2008 12:36 PM

The opnly thing I can think is that because I cut and paste from the actual thread that it kept it. I've been able to post everything else.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 14, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

"I think Zorn deserves to be judged against what's passed for success in the incarnation of this franchise under the current ownership group, and not the past."

I think I would agree with THIS point.

Jasno can be such a wet blanket. He predicts medocrity from the 'skins this year yet expects that somehow having been in the play-offs two of three years with 22 returning starters is not cause for optimism. Yeah, it's all about the offense and if the offense sucks, then why?

Year three of Gibbs 2.0 was clearly not just the defense 'not bailing out the offense' but sucking scum through a straw.

Posted by: bangkokben | August 14, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Not sure if this has been discussed already, but allegedly Brett Favre will be playing MOST of the game Saturday. This should be an interesting test to see how well our 2nd and 3rd stringers play against a HOF QB.

I'm particularly interested in seeing how guys like Tryon, Richardson, Horton and Moore perform. Will they be fooled by the vet or will they be "supersmart" and not make poor decisions. More than any other preseason game, I think Saturday night will seal the fates of some of our rookie DBs.

Posted by: talkshowhost | August 14, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

6 wins? Hardly. I see 9 wins from this team, at least. The Eagles are nothing to be afraid of, the Giants will falter and the Cowboys actually have not won anything lately.

Posted by: No | August 14, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs inherited Snyderatto's mistakes in drafting and free agency. Zorn needs to win more than Gibbs, because Zorn inherited much better players/pieces.

Jansen is worn down, Carlos Rogers has hands of stone, Campbell has to prove he can throw against good defenses, and players can't be dropping like flies when the season starts.

How does Horton get a colon infection?

Posted by: SnyderSucks | August 14, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Some of the staff, and some of the game plan - the run game, the defensive leadership - are the same this year as they were under Gibbs. But the whole atmosphere at camp seems so different this year. It's part of football that you can't predict this year on the basis of last year, which is why all the predictions are such a waste of time. I think there are too many variables to say what at this point. It's just too much fun to drink the Koolaid!! We have an exciting new receiving corps, and Jason Taylor on the defensive front, and some promising rookie line men...

So to heck with the doom and gloom from the past. Hail!

Posted by: SonofNero | August 14, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse


prison balls found horton and gave him the 'colon shank'

Posted by: Zebra | August 14, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

this guy(JLC) is basically predicting six wins for us and saying it wouldnt be a dissappointment, yet some of you worship him when he really doesnt know much about football

Posted by: X-E | August 14, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I don't know where this subject came from, but I'll roll with it...

I agree with most of what was said, JLC. And it's 100% true that anyone not named Joe Gibbs would have been fired after the 2006 debacle. But I don't think anyone would be calling for Zorn's head if he doesn't make the playoffs. The Skins have a number of things working against them: tough schedule, a number of key players coming off of injury from last year, a rookie coach, a new offense, etc. While I would hate a 6-10 season, it's probably more likely than the 10 or 11 win season we're all hoping for.

I'm being cautiously optimistic for this season (bucking the trend of assuming that the team will just suck like it has for most of the past 15 years), and I think Zorn could actually end up being pretty good. But I think Gibbs did just enough damage to his legacy in the 2.0 version that the bar isn't set nearly as high as it should have been for Zorn coming in and taking over.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 14, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

tsh, I just read something about Favre having a fatigued arm, or something like that, so I'm not sure he'll be out there for the whole game.

Posted by: Greg | August 14, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

I admire and respect Joe Gibbs for the type of man he is and the way he lives his life more than because of all that he has achieved. He may not have had as many victories in the past few years as I wanted him to have and he made mistakes I wish he hadn't made. But he made me feel proud to be a Redskins fan again. He brought a sense of class and dignity back to a franchise that was struggling with it's identity. We have a foundation that Jim Zorn can build on and hopefully we can have a team that will live up to the high expectations we have for it.

Posted by: GA_Skinz_Fan | August 14, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse


I am normally critical of everything you say about my Skins, but this is the best thing you have ever written. Gibbs 2.0 was a disater and the people who think it was good are living in the past. I am glad we got new blood in here to give this team some life, if I had heard fight there guts out one more time I would have puked. I think 6 wins would be OK, but it does not matter because this team will win 10 games this year. I do not know if that will get us in the playoffs, but that would be an awesome season for Zorn.

Posted by: kmdp4 | August 14, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

JLC with the vent and reflection post. All too rare.

Posted by: Alex35332 | August 14, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

I love the 'skins, i cherish the memories of gibbs1.0; the banner we made and hung outside our house on superbowl sundays, the diesel, hogs, fun bunch, the 35pt 2nd quarter against denver, the riggins run against miami, the bandwagon of destiny, most of all i loved the class that gibbs and the squire brought to the table. but they are memories of a time past. gibbs2.0 was met with cheering and fanfare in my office the day it was announced and i ignored the seemingly "timeless"(not the good kind) feel of gibbs's work for several seasons. the saunders move had a whiff of desperation, and looming over all of this was the "hand of doom", the danny. danny "the enabler" perhaps woul;d be a better moniker. nobody can fault his desire to win and belief in doing everything possible to provide of "his" coach, but to what extent should he have checked the reigns and said, "hold on. does this make sense?" he's not an original football guy and didn't see it coming, but the gibbs fanaticism can be blinding. coach joe will always be a hero/role model for me, but he was clearly caught out of time in a rapidly evolving league. gibbs 2.0 was not successful plain and simple but zorn*star still has big shoes to fill. i've read about his uptempo practice and watched the way his players work hard and precisely in the preseason games, but i hesitate to annoit him until he proves his worth on regular season gamedays. i think that we got the right guy at the right time for the team, but let us not be caught up in the "honeymoon" for zorn*star in the same manner we fell for gibbs the second time.
INteresting note:
1980 skins F.O. hires relative unknown to run team, squire says "WTF" we win three super bowls.
2008 F.O. hires relative unknown, fans/press say"WTF" we go 8-8.maybe in a couple of seasons we can really challenge for a Championship, zorn*star I hope you're the man for the job.
PS-La Canfora is a a good writer, truthful, forthright and thank goodness not a complete homer, that's our job

Posted by: truhomer | August 14, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

I dont think a good season is that far fetched. We were a solid team last year. We have lost one player, you know who and are develpoinig our franchise QB. Defense much the same and O run game the same.

I see 4-2 in division. thats as far as i will go...

Posted by: Zebra | August 14, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

I certainly love reading the insider each and every day and Jason has always shown a knack for getting the latest news out of skins park. I think that him throwing Joe under the bus like this is just wrong, in this article every event account he brought up was negative about him.Every fan is excited about the upcoming new look skins offense but to compare Zorn and Gibbs is not warranted. Its two different stories/pasts. Lets leave Joe to racing and thank him for his work and resurgence of the skins to be a contender/playoff team. Zorn will be handed a great team which he should do well with if the players follow him. When Bill Cowher left they didnt right off the bat compare he and Mike Tomlin, but what did he do? he led them to the playoffs. Jason-instead of looking at Joe's "flaws as a coach" maybe look at what he left for the next person to work with. I dont like the fact that you might be bringing in your dislike for Gibbs because of him not meeting your interview quota. Sorry for the long post

Posted by: Jason | August 14, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse


That seems like particularly harsh criticism of JG 2.0. I understand that it is based in fact, but it does seem to have a certain bias against Gibbs and the Redskins organization. I have never been on the "Jason hates the Redskins" train, however I do not consider this critique to be one of your better pieces.

I do agree that Gibbs was afforded more latitude than anyone else, but I do not have a problem with that. Gibbs 2.0 can be considered a success if only because the Redskins made the playoffs in 2 out of 4 years. I will take that after only 1 playoff trip in something like 10 years.

Unless a coach proves to be completely inept and unable of garnering respect from the team, he should be given at least two years. I would expect Zorn to be allowed that opportunity to succeed.

Posted by: CBT | August 14, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I honestly don't believe that Gibbs' heart was in it during his second tour of duty with the Skins. Personally, I was excited to read he was coming back in '04, but something didn't seem right over the course of the past 4 years.

Anyway, I believe they'll have Zorn on a fairly long leash and give him a minimum of 3 years to bring some success to the franchise. He seems to relate really well with the players, probably since he's a former player, and he's old-school too, as seen through the multiple two-a-days.

There's an aura about this training camp that's different from years past and for some reason, you hope that the Skins will have more success than 6 wins this year.

Posted by: JinxMan7997 | August 14, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I am normally critical of everything you say about my Skins, but this is the best thing you have ever written. Gibbs 2.0 was a disater and the people who think it was good are living in the past. I am glad we got new blood in here to give this team some life, if I had heard fight there guts out one more time I would have puked. I think 6 wins would be OK, but it does not matter because this team will win 10 games this year. I do not know if that will get us in the playoffs, but that would be an awesome season for Zorn.

Posted by: kmdp4 | August 14, 2008 12:46 PM

Keep in mind, for those of you who think Gibbs was a "disaster", this team Zorn has at his disposal was built by Gibbs. You can't compare the talent level on the field during the Spurrier era to what we have now. It's night and day. If Zorn is successful this year, at least some credit has to be due to Gibbs for leaving Zorn with the situation he has (similar to how credit has to be given to Parcells for how well Wade Phillips did in his inaugural season).

Plus, 2 playoff appearances in 4 years is hardly a "disaster." But that argument has been beaten to death, so that's the last I'll say on that.

Posted by: psps23 | August 14, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

"To me, that's a partially defeatist mentality born more of years of failure than a shining compliment in this era of football parity."

The defeatist mentality is
Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndStupidLookingGlasses,
predicting mediocrity and trying to set the stage so we can be happy about it, by pointing out shortcomings from Gibbs 2.0.

Posted by: rickmort | August 14, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Note: In JLC's post he does not actually predict 6 wins.

"So, what's a fair expectation for Zorn? Would six wins - matching Gibbs's total from 2004, with a lively offense that starts taking flight in the second half of the season with Campbell playing well - be horrible? Personally, I don't think so, especially not when you consider how dramatically improved the NFC East is compared to its lowly state in 2004 (and the fact Zorn gets a playoff schedule, while Gibbs was given a much easier slate in 2004 after Spurrier's boys fell apart in 2003)."

What he is saying is that six wins or more would be a success for a new HC in his POV.

He never says at any point, I think the skins will go 6-10.

Posted by: Alex35332 | August 14, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

From PFT,

Redcoat what are you feeding them boys down there?

Posted by Michael David Smith on August 14, 2008, 11:44 a.m. EDT
It’s the last day of training camp for the Miami Dolphins, and it appears that tempers have reached a boil.

Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald reports that a brawl broke out involving several players at this morning’s practice.

The fight started on what looked like a routine play, with cornerback Will Allen covering receiver David Kircus on a deep pass. But it quickly became far from routine, as, Salguero writes, “Allen began punching on Kircus who fell to the turf and basically went into a fetal position as Allen stood over him.”

(It’s surprising that Kircus didn’t fight back. Apparently Kircus only punches people when he’s at the end of their driveways.)

But even though Kircus didn’t want the fight to escalate, other Dolphins did. Once Allen stopped pummeling Kircus, he started to walk back toward the line of scrimmage. That’s when an offensive player decided to go after Allen and began to punch him. Salguero says no one is sure which offensive player went after Allen; depending on which reporter you ask it was either Reagan Mauia, or Anthony Fasano, or Sean Ryan or Boomer Grigsby.

And it still wasn’t over after that unidentified offensive player went after Allen. A bunch of defensive players rushed in to help Allen, and then some offensive players joined in, and a full-fledged rumble was going on, and all the coaches could do was blow their whistles.

The fight eventually broke up, and practice was restored. Ben Volin of the Palm Beach Post reports that Kircus wanted no part of Allen, and that Kircus was the last player to leave the practice field.

Initial indications are that no one was injured in the brawl. We’ll see whether Dolphins coach Tony Sparano follows the precedent set by Panthers coach John Fox and hands out any two-game suspensions.

Posted by: kmdp4 | August 14, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Jasno, loved loved LOVED this post. I am very optomistic about this season, but you have helped me put things in perspective. I really expect Zorn to be a better HC this year than JG 2.0 ever was, but i should temper my enthusiasm with reality. In this context, even a 6-10 season would not be a failure for Zorn. In fact, I would be content with a 6-10 season for a rookie HC. However, i still expect great things.

Posted by: talkshowhost | August 14, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Nice analysis, Jasno. As for expectations, they are the same as always: anything short of playoffs is unacceptable. If he gets 4 wins or less this year, and Cowher is available, then goodbye Zornie. If two consecutive losing seasons, and Cowher is available, then same result.

I'm optimistic, though. Like some others, I expect at least 9 wins this year. Would not be surprised to be in the NFC title game. Zornie has developed a great atmosphere this year. The team looks really put together and well-run.

And he does this while revamping the offense. Even though they kept the same running plays, the WCO is a different offensive philosophy. Just because the offense maintains the same running plays and terminology doesn't mean that the offense will not operate completely differently.

Posted by: Choowee | August 14, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure if anything Jason wrote is controversial--I'd be surprised if anyone would claim Gibbs 2.0 was "a success." There are many elements to that disaster, but the buck stops with Gibbs and he fired himself after a playoff season. (Rightly.) Zorn should have three years, and next year should be the "get adjusted to the game" season. I'd say six wins is accurate, though I think we all suspect (hope?) it will be more.

These are, after all, just predictions based on history and probabilities. Why get worked up over them? Will you stop watching the games because of them?

Posted by: DCUnited2 | August 14, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

I see 4-2 in division. thats as far as i will go...

Posted by: Zebra | August 14, 2008 12:47 PM

3-3 in the NFC East has to be considered a success... the schedule is a beast this year, but talent is on every roster. Execution and minimal mistakes goes far in this league when talent is relatively level throughout.

That said, the Z seems to have everyone's attention and the extra practice as compared to Gibbs 2.0 seems to have given everyone a leg up on the new offensive scheme.

8-8 is a success this year, but I just want to see a team that doesn't self destruct and look disorganized on the field... when was the last time we could say that over a 16 game season?

Posted by: BS44 | August 14, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

That's it JaLa. Bare your teeth and drop any pretense of impartiality. After all, who couldn't tell your bias before? (Let's just go back to last season and check, shall we? Gibbs not going for it in on 4th-and-1 against Dallas in the first half last year, instead opting for a field goal attempt? Not aggressive enough (as usual). Gibbs going for it on 4th-and-1 a week later in Tampa? How stupid can he be? Why didn't he kick the field goal????)

Let's see: Poor offensive performance on select gameday? All Gibbs fault. Good offensive performance on select gameday? It was because Gibbs finally left Al Saunders alone.
L.Coles unhappy in offense and dropping every pass thrown his way? Gibbs fault, not Coles. Santana Moss in same offense setting several club receiving records one year later? No mention.
Twelve years with one playoff appearance in Gibbs' absence? Not the coaches fault but the owners and front office. Two playoff appearances in four years for Gibbs after inheriting a roster debacle and years of front office mistakes? Pitiful, or, at best, a mere result of parity (does that mean Sean Payton is now an idiot, too, for going from the playoffs in '06 to 7 wins in the NFL's worst division last year?).

Look, was Gibbs II a sparkling performance, fulfilling every Redskin fans dreams? Of course not. But it wasn't as if it was a complete disaster, either. He left it better than he got it, and considering he got it after 12 years of built-up problems and being out of the game perhaps it should be viewed in that lens regardless of frustrations. Does Jim Zorn deserve a window of opportunity and some patience without being put in front of the firing squad after his first back-to-back losing streak? Absolutely. But don't make the point by trashing his predecessor. If that's the case than compare Gibbs II to Spurrier and, gulp, Norv-elous Turner (worst coach ever) - then come back and tell us how bad his second go-round was, pal.

Posted by: Red Skinz | August 14, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse


Hi, my name is Skippy andI have a metal plate in my head and really REALLY like Lemon Meringue Pie.

Skippy sees where Bert Parks, the new quarterbat of the New Jersey Jacks says his arm is “fatigued.” Well Skippy laughs up his shorts at this canard! Skippy thinks Parked Cars is trying to make up a recuse in advance for explaining how one of his downfield bums got picked at and returned up his hose by the Redskims. Go ‘skims!

As some of you already may have remembered to forget, when the Jacks attired the Green Gay sniggle caller, they reprised “Hanging” Chad Pencilneck, their earlier former quaterdeck. Charlie Tuna came calling and Chad soon was singed with the Miami Sound Machine and their lead singer Gloria Allred.

Skippy’s other third cousin twice removed (once forcibly) is a agent/lawler. He have analized the Brett Frrrrrrrrve trade. Here’s what he determined anally.

“The deal depends on the amount of playing time Farve attains. If he is present and snappily dressed for not less than 40% but no more than 50% of the games whether he plays or not, the Green Bay Packers receive a fourth round draft choice and a complimentary Danish.

“If Favre is at the game ‘in spirit or contextually,’ during 60% of the time he isn’t otherwise present, and calls in no less than 24 hours in advance, he is not charged a late fee.

"If the Jets make the playoffs, the draft choice is rescinded and instead Green Bay receives either a player to be named Later or a boy named Sue.

"If Favre is cut from the team, then the Jets must keep him and, ironically, Green Bay receives no compensation but Green Day gets a new bass player. Glad to help, Skippy. Best to your Mom and the Twins.”

Skippy feverishly hops this helps clean up the contusion.



Posted by: Skippy | August 14, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

How does Horton get a colon infection?

Posted by: SnyderSucks | August 14, 2008 12:40 PM

Ask anonymous.

Posted by: skinfanman | August 14, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

FACT : Last year's coaching by Coach Gibbs was THE BEST coaching job I have ever witnessed in my life and will go down as one of my favorite football teams (college & pro) ever.

An unfortunate yet fitting way for the HoFer to go out.

How can you not get chills thinking about what he and the team did last year after what happened? Think about the low point you had when you got the word that Sean Taylor was shot. "Damn, that's bad." Then think about when you heard he had actually died. AWFUL. And then look at what Gibbs gave us Redskins fans as his last send off and a farewell to #21.

Talk about ungrateful!

Posted by: The Truth in 1st person | August 14, 2008 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I'm gettin sick and tired of it. I'm gonna lose it if they fire Zorno after this season. That would mean Dan is the same old Dan.

Cut it out!

Posted by: Prison Balls | August 14, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

beep beep

Posted by: Cindy | August 14, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Jasno's piece was well written, but let's not forget he's a Ravens fan, who like most other Redskins beat reporters, has little affection for the team.

Posted by: RambleOn | August 14, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I remember Gibbs 1.0, Pettibone 0.5, Turner, etc. Gibbs 2.0 wasn't a good thing, but not much under Snyder has been good for our coaches & QBs.

I REALLY like what I've seen so far this year. My prediction, 11-5. Soupy ends up w/ better yardage & TD stats than Big Ben this year; 3 years from now Portis will be the Skins all-time leading rusher, and we'll be perennial SB contenders!

Posted by: Ignorance is... | August 14, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Jasno - I wouldn't put so much stock in the fact that Blanche is still here. You (on more than one occasion) pointed out that if Snyder was able to get the Baltimore defensive coor. then this team would have a completely different coaching staff.

Posted by: David | August 14, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs 2.0 was a success. It restored this teams respectability. It brought a level of pride to the organization that had been absent during most of the years between Gibbs 1 & 2. The team plays hard and you'll note the number of serious offseason player problems ... none.

Two playoffs and one playoff win in 4 years isn't exactly overwhelming, but its as much success in 4 years as were had in the prior 10.

Gibbs 2.0 is judged fairly against a low bar. This organization tripped through a bunch of coaches and philosophies with nothing to show for it. Clearly the bar has been raised.

However, the hope was Gibbs would turn the Skins into an elite team. That didn't happen.

The downside of Gibbs 2 was substantial. Brunell was a good QB for one season, but started most of 3. The offensive play calling was of the 'not to lose' style resulting in mostly close games, and many losses after leading in the second half. Personnel decisions were mixed, overall they were a positive. But the missteps were spectacular disasters. Lastly, the cap management was poor and remains a problem for this team. That hangover will take another year or two to recede.

Overall, the team improved greatly under Gibbs. The loss of ST remains a massive tragedy and its not hard to imagine the Skins as a dominating defense with him. Most of the top draft picks were used on defense. The offense has good WRs (when healthy), a good O line (when healthy), good RBs and a young QB who has shown he can play in this league, but its unclear if he's a top 10 QB or top 20 QB.

Overall, Gibbs 2.0 was a success. Just not the kind of great success Gibbs 1.0 was.

Posted by: AL Zeke etc | August 14, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

"The team won six games that season with an offense so stunted that it led to the top WR wanting out"

I don't know how everyone else remembers it, but Coles was turning out to be a disgruntled player he was when the Skins got him from the Jets. The moment he does not like one thing, he becomes a complainer and wants out. That should not be portrayed to us as if it was a bad thing, that was a very good thing. Now look at Coles, he's upset again because his boy Chad has left town. This mentality is common among WRs as all of you know and Coles is no exception. So painting him being dealt because he hated the system and we lost out on a great WR as Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndStupidLookingGlasses does here is not accurate.

I do agree that the hiring of Al Saunders was grasping at straws and a bad move, when there should have been some changes made in that offensive system that took them to the playoffs, rather than overhaul it. Aside from the TB and SEA playoff games the offense was not horrible (although inconsistent). It was more Brunnell not being able to get the ball downfield with any consistence particularly towards the end of a season when his 38 year old arm was wearing down, that led to defenses loading up 8 to stop the run and dare the skins to throw it with him. Had Campbell had time in that tweaked offense that Brunnell ran, things IMO would have been better.

Posted by: rickmort | August 14, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Not to go all Mark McGuire, but I'm not here to talk about the past. When trading Coles, nets the team Santana Moss, I can't ever look at that as a negative.

I'm excited for this upcoming season, and again, whats in the past, is in the past, dredging it up now, I'm not sure what the point was?

Posted by: Greg | August 14, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Zorn has to be judged on his own and not against Gibbs (1.0 or 2.0). If the team shows progress with the new offense and the D maintains it's identity, I don't think you call 6 wins a failure. That said, I think it is pretty unlikely. It's pretty clear to me that this team is better than the Eagles and the Giants (given their off-season losses). Less than 9 wins would surprise me and my prediction is 10.

As for Gibbs 2.0, you make some good points, but I think you're a little too dismissive of the accomplishment of making the playoffs two of the last three years. Not many NFL teams can say that and it is indicative of a program headed in the right direction. It is not the end result you are looking for, but getting a "ticket to the dance" is always the first step.

Posted by: Mike H. | August 14, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Jason, a six-win season would be a horrible season for this team. I don't believe they are in a rebuilding mode yet, otherwise they would not have traded draft picks for Jason Taylor. Your comparison with Gibb's first year back is misplaced. Gibbs inherited a poorly-assembled and disfunctional team that went 5-11 in 2003 and Zorn inherited a playoff team that went 9-7 despite a slew of injuries (OL,WRs,QB) last season. I agree with you that NFC East should be stronger now than NFC East was in 2004, but the team Zorn inherits actually made the playoffs in 2007 in the best division of the league. So if Gibbs held this team back as you seem to suggest, then Zorn should have no problem improving upon Gibb's record. I like Zorn, but he has not earned his place in the Hall of Fame yet. I would not hold it against Zorn if the team narrowly missed the playoffs, but we should expect better things from him than turning a playoff team into a six-win team in one year.

Posted by: M | August 14, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

I really dig the blog and I really dig when you bring to us avid (and somewhat ridiculous) Redskins fans.

Thanks for that.

I think by normal standards, Gibbs 2 was a failure of some sort. Go by wins/losses, playoff wins, division titles, etc.

But after the Spurrier reign things were worse than ever. The team was a joke. There was no direction. The roster was amazingly poor.

Gibbs showed the ability to rally his guys late in the year, improve the roster (and front office), while demonstrating the dedication to overcome immense obstacles.

The late season rallies were classic Gibbs, but I think his influence on the talent of the team and make-up of the front office is vastly underrated.

Campbell, Portis, ST, Fletcher, Washington, Griffin, Rocky, Landry, Moss... nearly the entire roster was overhauled from the Spurrier era. This team is certainly more game ready for Zorn than the team that Spurrier left.

You would know better than I, but it seems that Snyder is running the team in a better manner. That he refrained from interfering with Gibbs during Joe's tenure. Maybe he did it because he learned where his role was, or maybe he did it because he revered Gibbs as a legend; either way it doesn't matter because I believe that Snyder learned from the experience and he applied some of that knowledge into hiring Zorn and augmenting this roster post-Gibbs.

I really like Zorn and I think he will succeed. It's a tough town and if he starts slow the media and fans will jump on him, but Zorn will probably excel where Gibbs couldn't; by bringing a potent offense and an organized team. Still, I feel that Zorn will be standing on Gibbs' shoulders this season. The roster was mainly left in-tact. Many of Gibbs' coaches remain. The run game will be the same. I look at it akin to the situation in Dallas last year, where Phillips ran with what Parcells abandoned.

I think Gibbs shot himself in the foot because of his conservative nature and, in today's NFL, his team would have to be tremendously better than other teams to be a consistent winner. Now that Zorn is the man and he calls the plays, the offensive talent should be more productive. I feel that Zorn should be evaluated by Campbell's performance. If he improves, good job, Jim. If not I think he would have underperformed. Zorn isn't on the hook for the defense or the running game as a whole. He may get blamed for it, but that really wouldn't be fair.

But who said it would be fair? :)

Thanks again JLC. I really enjoy your work.

Posted by: Truant | August 14, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs 2.0 was a failure in the sense that he didn't win the SB


Gibbs 2.0 was a success in that he left a solid foundation of players to build up on.

Posted by: Ron Burgandy | August 14, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

As a man, Gibbs is unparalleled. As a coach and personnel guy the last four years, he is easily surpassed. I'm sorry, I love the guy, but our offense has been pitiful for years, we lost every challenge (except that 12 men on the field in Minny, I hope that guy got a raise), we had tons of false starts, we are the only team I know of that lost two games because of illegal shifts negating TD's....and then argued about it, we had delay of games, bad timeouts, and generally looked like we were lost most of the time. That's not great coaching. If Zorn can run the team as well in the regular season as he has in the preseason, Campbell develops into a top 5 qb in the NFC, and the offense gets into the top 12 in the league, this season will be a success regardless of what the record is. The facts are, our division is the best in football, we could have a better team and still miss the playoffs. The key to this year is developing some type of identity on offense and developing JC. If that happens, and we revamp our Oline a little in the offseason (find replacements for Kendall and Jansen) we are set up to contend for years with solid talent and youth at all of our skill positions.

Posted by: zjfr2 | August 14, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

The success and failure of Gibbs and Zorn was/will be decided by injuries, especially on the OL. When healthy the O clicked.

The best thing about having Gibbs for four years was he taught Snyder how to be an owner. He showed him why it's an advantage to have continuity in the coaching staff - Grilliams notwithstanding. It may be that Snyder spent so much time agonizing over the HC decision because he now knows he wants someone here for the long haul.

Posted by: skinfanman | August 14, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Coach Joe's second tenure was a success because, like all the greats, he left the team in better shape than it was when he inherited it. The talent level is infinitely better now than when Spurrier left, and there are several 'Core Redskins' who will be strong leaders for years to come.

I think making the playoffs last year with the right side of the O-Line gone for the year, plus the death of Sean, was the greatest thing this team has accomplished since January of '92.

The return of Gibbs did not result in a Super Bowl, but he left a team that can win it within three years.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

2008 Record:
Week 1 - win vs NYG
Week 2 - win vs NO
Week 3 - win vs ARI
Week 4 - win vs DAL
Week 5 - lose vs PHI
Week 6 - win vs STL
Week 7 - win vs CLE
Week 8 - win vs DET
Week 9 - lose vs PIT
Week 11 - lose vs DAL
Week 12 - lose vs SEA
Week 13 - win vs NYG
Week 14 - win vs BAL
Week 15 - lose vs CIN
Week 16 - win vs PHI
Week 17 - win vs SF

Posted by: The Great Swami | August 14, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Here's the short list: 13 returning coaches, only 4 new, some promotions, some retirements- not exactly gutting.

Overhauled the entire offensive philosophy? Didn't we keep the same running game? To me that's overhauling half the offense.

JLaC in classic form.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 14, 2008 12:37 PM

Amen. Amen. Amen.

Posted by: OG Barno | August 14, 2008 1:31 PM | Report abuse

It's painful to read Jayson Blair-Canfora sometimes. It really is. But what is even more painful is reading the positive comments he plants under his posts, trying to make it seem like he actually has a lot of fans.

Jayson Blair-Canfora is a despicable reporter.

Posted by: Jayson Blair-Canfora | August 14, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

JLaC knows how to get my blood boiling I'll tell you that.

Is it even worth responding to this chopped up bits and pieces of out of context facts or assumed facts?!?!?

Posted by: 4th | August 14, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Great read Jason

Posted by: pmizzle | August 14, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

and six wins is a failure

we're the freaking Washington Redskins

Posted by: The Truth in 1st person | August 14, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse


The best written piece I have seen you post here. By "Best written piece" I mean "you put words together real good like", not the actual content of the piece. Gibbs did an excellent coaching job his second stint. Let's look at this for a moment. He inherited a team that was in major flux, from Norv, to Marty to Spurrier to Dan and his previous fantasy football player accumulations this team had a mix of players that did not fit into one mold for a teams direction. He was able to put together a group of players that will be the core of the team for a time to come. A core that all fit together, not a mish mosh of players who fit into different offensive/defensive philosophies.

No Gibbs did not win a SB this time around, and struggled to win 1 playoff game out of 3, but the NFL is not the same NFL he left earlier. Aside from the Patriots is there any other team you can look at and be confident that it will be a contender year in and year out? No there is none, it's because of free agency and the constant movement of personnel today. He found players quality players and quality PEOPLE (and had to pay them of course because they all want to GET PAID after 1 good season) and made them believe in the franchise, made sure they were proud to be Redskins and made the owner realize that next to talent that is the next best attribute to have in someone you bring here. Being able to be proud of your team and play hard because of that, not play hard just because you got a lot of money to do so like a mercenary. As a long time skins fan, as I and most of here are something you can never understand is the importance of this to this organization. This mentality is infectious and when you bring in quality youth to be molded by these quality guys Gibbs brought in, you will have success for long time to come.

Another thing Gibbs IMO did was reign in Dan Snyder, in the way of teaching him that if he want to overspend for someone, overspend for the right guy, not some self centered me first all about the money player (e.g. Deion, Coles, Smith the later years, J. George). Bring in and draft quality guys who are willing to fit the Redskin mold, and will when they become vets, teach the new guys what it means to be a Redskin. Danny did not know how to do this and Vinny and Danny were schooled well by Gibbs, to do this for the future of the franchise.

Gibbs did one heck of a job keeping this team together through the the S. Taylor tragedy. No one else could have handled this better. It's my opinion that Gibbs being a man of God, was not not led back to the Redskins to win a championship; after seeing all that has has happened, I am of the opinion that God brought him here to guide the players and organization through this tragedy as he did. There is no other coach that could have done it better.

So say what you will about the buffalo game after Taylor's murder, the ineffectiveness of the offense at times, the overpaid and very large coaching staff, but his legacy is still in tact and stronger than ever. It is unfair to compare him to Zorn and vice versa, for both men, because looking back Gibbs 2.0 was not about wins or losses or SB championships in that timeframe. It was about reestablishing quality leadership in an organization, creating a foundation of players and front office personnel that are better equipped to make the right decisions and be better people. Lastly, to restore pride in being a Redskins, for fans players and everyone who has loved the Redskins since they can remember first being able to remember anything.

Posted by: rickmort | August 14, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Why continue to live in the past?? It's a new era, let's move forward!

Posted by: Matt | August 14, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Let's start like this:

Proir to Gibbs the franchise was in shambles. Spurrier freakin quit on us and our roster indeed sucked. Ramsey prob was already lost for good and EVERY COACH WANTS THEIR OWNB QB, which Gibbs did in bringing in Brunell for now and Campbell for later. What's wrong with that?

The 1st year was the learning experince he needed to get back into football. They went to the playoffs the 2nd year and lost because of the plays made ON THE FIELD. Do you not remember Carlos dropping that INT for a TD? They knocked out Alexander for the game. That was they're game to win against the eventual SB contenders.....

More later

Posted by: 4th | August 14, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I think JLac is still bitter about gibbs comments on his article on stephon heyer. Gibbs def. didnt have a hall of fame worthy second stint, but he did send a team to the post season twice that had only been once in what 10 years? Not bad if you ask me and given where the teams at now you can thank joe gibbs for alot of that.

Posted by: peter | August 14, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Sean Taylor was murdered and you mentioned this in all of 2 sentences in your 15 paragraph piece when this was probably the most important and shining moment for Gibbs. Leading Men through adversity.

If just for that, I'm glad he was coach for us. I am once again glad to be a Redskin fan unlike the 1st Four Years of Dan Snyder's ownership.

You can't compare Zorn to Gibbs, especially after one training camp. That's not fair to Zorn and you are essentially throwing Gibbs under the bus.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs 2.0 was horrible. Uncle Joe on gameday constantly looked as if he had just shat in his depends. His lips were constantly pursed like some grandma disapproving of the neighborhood children being too loud.

His offense, with it's 20 chefs was a joke. His worst mistake, which no reporter EVER held him accountable for, was the Brunell signing. Paying 38 million dollars for an injured, washed up QB we could of have had for the league minimum set the stage for the fiasco that followed.

All Gibbs could say was "he's super smart and has so much courage...blah..blah..blah."

It's clear now who was responsible for the four Super Bowl appearances and three victories of Gibbs 1.0......Bobby Beathard.

Posted by: Lance | August 14, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 1:54 PM

Was me.....

Posted by: 4th | August 14, 2008 1:55 PM | Report abuse

I was there for both Gibbs 1.0 and 2.0. 1.0 established this franchise. 3 rings w/3 different qb's is somehting that will never, ever go away.

I was slightly disappointed with Gibbs 2.0 but I think you do have to look at the results - 2 playoff appearances in 4 years ain't bad. Especially considering the previous 10. And even more so considering he came in after the Snyder/Spurrier debacle.

You're a little harsh on Gibbs 2.0. There were mistakes (AL SAUNDERS)but this ship had sunk when he came on board and he got us back to the surface. As someone posted earlier, He brought a sense of class and dignity back to a franchise that was struggling with it's identity.

I'm excited as hell for Zorn but there's no need to trash Gibbs that hard. He is still the Redskins. And he always will be b/c of Gibbs 1.0. You don't throw that away.


Posted by: hailrskins | August 14, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

gibbs 2.0 was not successful plain and simple but zorn*star still has big shoes to fill. i've read about his uptempo practice and watched the way his players work hard and precisely in the preseason games, but i hesitate to annoit him until he proves his worth on regular season gamedays. i think that we got the right guy at the right time for the team, but let us not be caught up in the "honeymoon" for zorn*star in the same manner we fell for gibbs the second time.
INteresting note:
1980 skins F.O. hires relative unknown to run team, squire says "WTF" we win three super bowls.
2008 F.O. hires relative unknown, fans/press say"WTF" we go 8-8.maybe in a couple of seasons we can really challenge for a Championship, zorn*star I hope you're the man for the job.
PS-La Canfora is a a good writer, truthful, forthright and thank goodness not a complete homer, that's our job

Posted by: truhomer | August 14, 2008 12:47 PM

Well said, truhomer.

Posted by: frediefritz | August 14, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

I hated Brunell as much as anyone but those 2 4th quarter Santana Moss touchdown passes to beat Dallas on Monday Night were worth one 6-10 season to me.

Gibbs 2.0 had his moments. Don't be a total hater.

And he left our roster in better shape than Spurrier left us.

Posted by: hailrskins | August 14, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse


prison balls found horton and gave him the 'colon shank'

Posted by: Zebra | August 14, 2008 12:42 PM
Is my work that obvious?

Posted by: Prison Balls | August 14, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

J-La's anti Gibbs bias is well noted, but that notwithstanding it was a decent post with some valid points, although he was needlessly beating a dead horse at times.

I think the Zorn era will FAR exceed Gibbs 2.0 because he seems like he 'gets it' and his players have bought in. The talent is there, as shown in spite of Gibbs 2.0, now it's time for the coaches to maximize it!

Posted by: MIA in Miami | August 14, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I don't think any coach is perfect.

Gibbs 2.0 biggest mistake was letting someone convince him he dosen't have IT any more as a Ofensive Coordinator and he should hire Saunders.

The biggest blockade for Gibbs was him never having a healthy OLine.

Both playoff runs had back ups. Remember Cory Raymer and Ray Brown in the Seattle playoff game?

Last year, we didn't have our whole right side and still made it to the playoffs despite that and with an undrafted rookie free agent that JLaC said shouldn't be playing and 'sources' was telling him that the kid is far from ready.

How quickly we conviently forget some facts and remember others.

Reminds me of my wife.....

Posted by: 4th | August 14, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

"Sean Taylor was murdered and you mentioned this in all of 2 sentences in your 15 paragraph piece when this was probably the most important and shining moment for Gibbs. Leading Men through adversity."

I know right? He might as well have just written..."Gibbs lost 2 of 3 playoff games, lead grown men through adversity after the murder of a teammate, father and friend, yada...yada...yada...Gibbs 2.0 stinks."

Well written piece though, you strung those words together really well Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndUglyLookingGlasses.

Posted by: rickmort | August 14, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Everyone knows LAV Coles is a crybaby, look at last year when he made the Jets guarantee a large portion of his contract even though he has been paid handsomely and is not a top 10 WR. Now when Pennington leaves he cries again. F Lav Coles,!!!!Santana Moss Scored more TD's in the Dallas MNF game then LAV did in all of 2004, in the same offense!!!!! For JLA to even use Lav as an example just shows the negative slant that is omnipresent in his work.

Posted by: Andy in baltimore | August 14, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Gutted the coaching staff? Most infamous free agency class of all time in 2006? Really more than 2000? Who in 2006 free agency was more infamous than 2000's Deion Sanders, Bruce Smith, Jeff George, Mark Carrier? Please!

Would a 6 win season be comparable to Gibbs 2.0 2004 season? No because the 2003 team was dreadful, where the 2007 was a playoff team.

End the sour grapes Jason, and leave Gibbs 2.0 alone. You make him read as an incompetent, stubborn, and washed up man at the helm. Was it really that bad? No they didn't win a Super Bowl, but he definitely pulled them out of the toilet they were in for most of the mid 90s, late 90s, and early 2000s. Thanks for at least giving him props for his team not giving up on him last if it were out of the kindness of the players hearts to give him their faith of which he not in the least deserved. Jeez!

Posted by: JasnosAdork | August 14, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Every time I come by here you have written something stupid. But I keep coming back, so you are getting what you want! Haha!

First off, Gibbs' staff was not "gutted." Why don't you go get a coaching staff roster and count the number of new coaches and compare it to the number of coaches that stayed on from Gibbs' staff, then come back and define "gutted" for us.

Then, go out and see how many teams have been in the playoffs two of the last 3 years. Return and tell us how awful of a situation Gibbs left this franchise in.

Then, take your handy roster and list who the key players are on this team. Then come back and tell us how many of them did not come from Gibbs.

The team underachieved with Gibbs, and Gibbs made some really horrible mistakes. But to characterize his tenure as a disaster or failure is just plain stupid. The change in leadership will be good for the 'Skins and it will help them take the next step, but don't fool yourself into thinking that Gibbs failed to turn around a laughingstock of a franchise, stocking it with good players who are great guys, and leading it to the playoffs in 2 of the last 3 seasons. Including a playoff win.

Hmmm, the Cowboys can't say that, can they?

Posted by: Sherry | August 14, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Whether you think Gibbs 2.0 was a complete disaster or not. What's the point of continuing to bring it up now JLC. I appreciate Gibbs coming back and trying to do the best job he could even if there was a lot about his Coaching that was outdated and unorganized. I just thank him for his effort, putting some talent on the roster, and moving on. JLC, Czaban, Andy Polley and all these other local media guys that are mad because Gibbs didn't go out of his way to keep them informed or kiss their behind need to grow up.

Posted by: Brian | August 14, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs' second go-round was certainly a disappointment, but how could it not have been? He'd already been in the Hall of Fame. What was he going to do to top that?

He was almost certainly a worse coach the second time around. The man famous for halftime adjustments often saw his teams lose leads in the second half and flounder in the fourth quarter. He'd once been a relative maverick and offensive innovator, able to mold the offense to the strengths of his personnel - but in the 00's seemed (especially in clinging to Mark Brunell) an ultra-conservative stick in the mud. He'd once been the kind of coach who sent Jeff Hayes scrambling madly through Cowboys special teams gunners on 4th and a million, and now he was the kind of coach who wouldn't call a punt-fake-pass - ever - even with former quarterback Tom Tupa taking the long snap. Whether this timidity was the result of too much time spent managing a race team - inarguably an entirely different skill set from coaching football - or simply the side effect of an atrophied football acumen is up for debate, but the end result was the same: Gibbs was not the talent he once was.

So he was no longer a great coach. Worse, he was an atrocious general manager. Some writers suggested that he take a Bill Parcells-type roll as team president after he hung up his clipboard, to which I say, "Can you please pass the crack?" He didn't have a Beathard this go-round. He didn't, unfortunately, even have a Casserly. Gibbs utterly failed to stock the team competently. He overpaid for duds who played themselves off the team within one season, and he well-overpaid for old studs who are just now breaking down from injury and decrepitude. The shame is that when he bothered to use draft picks, he tended to pick well. But those opportunities were rare, owing to his particularly faith-based strain of George Allen Syndrome.

However - what Gibbs still had (and I think, Jasno, that you're doing a great disservice to him in minimizing his role in the team's resurgence after the Taylor murder) was the ability to make the ancient no-talents he had assembled hang together and play hard, especially in times of adversity. Excuse the cliche, but having suffered through the gutless mediocrity of the Norv Tuner era and the pure haplessness of Spurrier's tenure, when players regularly quit not just on plays and games but on entire seasons, you can't say that Gibbs wasn't a massive improvement. I could be wrong about this, but I think the players who bought in to Gibbs' shpiel really cared more.

Now, while you're about the business of handing out plaudits only to Gregg Williams, remember that it was Gibbs who brought the guy to Washington in the first place. So that's one hire that Coach Joe got right.

Posted by: Shekb | August 14, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but I have to post a comment on this one.
J-La, love your work, but you are way off here.
The Redskins were among the Cardinals and Saints for the WORST teams in the NFL the 10 years before Gibbs came back to save us.

Gibbs came back, got rid of the selfish players and built a real team.
2 Playoff appearances in the past 3 years puts the Redskins in the upper tier of NFL teams. That is a dramatic turnaround.

You, Jason, are making the mistake of comparing Gibbs 1.0 to Gibbs 2.0 and making the argument that the 2nd time around was a failure. The facts prove that this is clearly not the case.

Gibbs restored this franchise to respectability and I don't think any other coach alive today could have done that.
If Gibbs came back for a 5th year, we would be seriously considered Super Bowl condenters. That's pretty glorious to me... especially when you compare it to the 10 years before Gibbs came back!

Posted by: Diesel | August 14, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Peter, you are exactly right. JLC didn't like Gibbs because JG would call out the stupid articles with their completely BOGUS "sources." (BTW, JLC's "sources" are a huge running joke within the organization.) JLC loves Zorn because Jim is a talker and sounds like he is giving answers instead of avoiding questions, thus JLC is all over his jock.

Sports writers are so lame.

Posted by: Repeat | August 14, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Going to the Playoffs 2 time in 4 years is the best thing to happen sense Gibbs first go around. I think Zorn is starting from a good place though. A top 10 D and proven RB and 2 WRs as well as a QB about to start his prime. 9-7 wild card this season.

Posted by: Fat Bob | August 14, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Thank you Joe Gibbs for everything you have done for this franchise your second go-round, you restored so much that this franchise lost upon your first exit. You made the 2007 season the most memorable of any of the 21 seasons I have been watching..and for that I will always be grateful. Animals like J-Lac I will have to apologize for. He is clearly scorned, and a man as himself, who is quick to profess his unbiased and objective approach is clearly struggling at hiding the huge amount of personal contempt he has for you. I learned 2 things today about 2 people. #1 The Truth isn't such a bad guy after all, even though his Ga. Bulldogs talk gets on my nerves #2 J-Lac is such a bad guy after all. That warpathinsiders stuff that I have been reading is everything that I had hoped J-Lac would provide but has struggled mightily to give us. I can't stand to see him bash anything Redskins in an unfair manner that he has just now. Thank you once again Joe Gibbs, you have left Coach Zorn with one heck of a foundation. I will be rooting hard for Coach Z and the Redskins success in 2008 and every year after.
By the way if kmdp4 is hip to that sell out shti he can go be an Cardinals fan or something. fuggin clown fruk him and everyone else who is down with J-Lac and his biased reporting. -Earl the 3rd

Posted by: Earl Sugarloaf III | August 14, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs deserves some of the credit for the great defense-- he always said Defense is first ("if they don't score, we can't lose" is a famous tautology of Gibbs). Williams ran the defense, but Gibbs' offense rarely turned the ball over, and it was a point of emphasis for him.

On the other hand, I have frequently felt that our offense under Gibbs was simply not modern or effective. I mean, Spurrier and Schottenheimer did so much better offensively with so much less talent (Tony Banks or Danny Wuerfel at QB? Rod Gardner at WR? Trung Candidate at RB?)

So, I give him a B-. Certainly not great coaching, but like one poster said, we did go twice to the playoffs in four years. In the NFC East over the past four years, Philadelphia and Dallas have also only gone to the playoffs twice. (NY has gone three times.)

Posted by: Mike B | August 14, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Jansen is worn down, Carlos Rogers has hands of stone, Campbell has to prove he can throw against good defenses, and players can't be dropping like flies when the season starts.

How does Horton get a colon infection?

Posted by: SnyderSucks
I could't agree more about Jansen! Get him out of the styarting line before he gets one of our QB's killed.

Posted by: MyrtleBeachMike | August 14, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Wow! The players are excited about a new coach and a new approach! Yippee! Earth to J-La: ALL players give us the lip service of being happy under a new coach in the early days. Didn't they say the same when Gibbs got here in 2004?

Yes, 31-36 wasn't the bomb, yes Gibbs had a huge payroll (so did Norv, Marty and The Ol'Ball Coach), fine, fine, fine. But that still doesn't hide the fact J-La is on an egregiously biased mission here. If he's critical of the Redskins as a team and organization (including Gibbs) then fine, that his job, but the all-Gibbs-bashing all-the-time got old and he still hasn't let up even after the man has left the building and gone back to retirement. What, did you catch him slashing your tires J-La?

Never once when the Redskins lost was it the players fault for their screw-ups and under-achievement on the field, just Gibbs. And when they won it was all in spite of Gibbs, or because they were 'getting healthy' (but wait, so when they lost before it wasn't because of all the injuries to starters???). When Gregg Williams D fell apart in 2006 to become the worst ever that was all on Gibbs, too, not GW. C'mon.

No question Gibbs made his mistakes - all coaches do - and no question as head coach he was responsible for things (though he never ducked that responsibility, unlike Norv). Get over it and move forward.

People will judge Zorn on his own merits and faults, as they should. But if Gibbs was expected to go 16-0 off a 5-11 Spurrier season (as per the Jason La C sliding scale), then is it unfair to ask Zorn to win at least 7-8 games in light of last years playoff appearance???

Posted by: Red Skinz | August 14, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Jason La Canfora,

All I can say is I hope you get hazardous duty pay living there and taking this verbal beating.

Although I was born there, I am so glad I don't live there anymore. Taking an opposing view takes much more courage than running with the crowd, so keep up the good work.

To all those Gibbs apologists, this isn't Church, or some charitable organization. This is professional sports. Gibbs himself might agree with many or JAlaCan's points. He is an honorable man and I'd love to hear what his thoughts are.

Posted by: MyrtleBeachMike | August 14, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

"JLC loves Zorn because Jim is a talker and sounds like he is giving answers instead of avoiding questions, thus JLC is all over his jock"

Repeat that's an awesome assesment.

Posted by: RICKMORT | August 14, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs 2 was not as good as Gibbs 1 but the team was much better in 2007 than it was in 2003 before Gibbs took over.
To rally and make the playoffs last year after the Sean Taylor tragedy,the gut wrenching loss to the Bills and the injury to Jason Campbell showed why Gibbs made the Hall of Fame. To say the game had passed Gibbs by is inaccurate(except when it comes to calling 2 timeouts in a row.)

Posted by: Jeremy Bauserman | August 14, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs I was an era that the coach was driven to win and an era that he "right" players carried the team. Meaning, Gibbs I had great leadership from a number of players and great coaches to go along with that leadership.

During Gibbs II, the players attitude and motivation was much different. The NFL is a successful sports league and the players ride along with that success as a given. Making a lot of money is more important to alot of them then their legacy. Gibbs II was not a good coach given the NFL's changed persona. Do not think that I do not like Gibbs in any way. As a Leader, Coach and Gentlemen he is a top notch person.

Posted by: rudskin | August 14, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Zorn inherits a franchise in much better shape because of Gibbs than the team Gibbs inherited from Spurrier. Hopefully that will springboard Zorn and the Skins to future success. If Zorn fails to get the Skins to the playoffs (building off of last season) than many questions will be rightfully raised.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Inbetween Gibbs 1.0 and Gibbs 2.0 there was one, count them, one Redskin playoff game in 11 years. In four years Gibbs 2.0 goes to the playoffs twice. To be fair you should throw out 2004 as Gibbs 2.0 was left to pick up the pieces of a broken down franchise riddled with unskilled players, no draft picks, and salary cap problems.

Posted by: #21 | August 14, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Hey MyrtleBeachMike,

yahoo for opposing views! Bravo, bravo! Too bad the opposing views are biased and factually inaccurate in some cases, and most definitely the facts that are correct are slanted to paint a different picture than the true one. Also there are inconsistencies with comparisons that are being made. Like the obvious one, if Zorn's success is being partially graded on his predecessors failures, then the same process should apply to Gibbs 2.0 and therefore he is being unfairly harsh on Gibbs 2.0 since Spurrier was a disaster.

So it is for the merge fact that his view is one difference that Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndStupidLookingGlasses is being beaten up, it's for the reasons I stated above.

Posted by: rickmort | August 14, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I see no reason this team can't win 10 games this year. The key is to stay healthy and don't blow halftime leads like we did last year. Zorn seems like he wants to move the ball and put points on the board. Gibbs was always happy with a 3 points lead and get conservative. You can't do that and win football games.

Posted by: WoodyFL | August 14, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Leave the past where it is, in the past!

I am not making any bold proedictions. I think Zorn (or any new person in any new position for that matter) deserves time to ply his trade.

The fans in this area are not that forgivning though. I read earlier that they may want his head if the team loses two preseason games. That poster is right. There are so many things that go into this. If the team starts 2-3 or 1-4 in the first five games, it will not surprise me if the fans adn press say "...See, the FO should never have hired this guy...he has no clue on how to coach a team...he has no expeirence..." blah blah blah. They wll blame everyone fron Snyder to Ceratto to Gibbs for leaving. Just give the man some time to ply his trade.

I for one am very excited, ore son than in years past, but I am not stupid and understand that it may take a minute.


Posted by: Skip in VA | August 14, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Playoff appearences from 1993-2003: 1
Playoff appearences from 2004-2007: 2

I think JLaC is clearly judging Gibbs too harshly (as he always has). You can't base your assesment of Gibbs on the overblown hype that surrounded is return (as you do above), that is patently unfair. Gibbs turned the culture of the franchise around (Marty could have done this too if he'd been given more than 1 year), gave hope to the fanbase, and brought in the players who will power any success that Jim Zorn has in the next few years: Jason Campbell, Clinton Portis, Marcus Washington, Andre Carter, C. Griffin, London Fletcher, Rocky McIntosh, Carlos Rogers, Shawn Springs, Laron Landry, Casey Rabach, Chris Cooley, Santana Moss, and ARE. You're way off base here Jasno.

Posted by: Ehren | August 14, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"So it is for the merge fact that his view is one difference that Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndStupidLookingGlasses is being beaten up, it's for the reasons I stated above."

That last sentence should read:

So it is NOT for the mere fact that his view is one difference that Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndStupidLookingGlasses is being beaten up, it's for the reasons I stated above.

Posted by: rickmort | August 14, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Actually, #21, there were two playoff games in that span, both in January 2000, a win at home over the Lions and a heartbreaking loss at Tampa. But your point is well taken.

And dudes, the conversation has continued on the new thread, just a heads up...

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | August 14, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

And rickmort, I would love to see the evidence that Jason La Canfora's work is "factually inaccuracies in some cases."

If you're going to make a serious accusation like that -- and in journalism there's no more serious accusation you can make -- you had better be able to back it up with some evidence.

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | August 14, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, "factually inaccurate" is what you wrote, rickmort, not "factually inaccuracies"

Posted by: Nate in the PDX | August 14, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

I never comment on these things but I will because I think Coach Gibbs is getting too much grief. First, let's really look at last year. The line was desimated by injuries and you had basically a rookie QB. Of course they were not going to open up the offense. How could they? The kid would have gotten killed. Yes, there were problems but let's look at this roster that everyone is praising. What changes have actually occurred? None really, these are the same good, hard working guys that Gibbs picked. They have played no games. Everyone loves Zorn now. If he the wins don't come will we think his free spirit style is so great? I doubt it. Gibbs was what they needed to get past Spurrier. Give him some credit cause brother the pantry was bare when he came on board. He built a club that is better than some think if they stay healthy. Everyone argues about depth but no team in the NFL has real depth. That is why teams make the playoffs one year and are out the next. It is a QB league and the teams with the premier QB win on a regular basis. Who drafted and pushed to draft Campbell? Gibbs. Give the guy some credit. I love Zorn and think he is right for today but they needed Gibbs and his style to get them past Spurrier. Remember when we loved the ol'ball coach. Hey, Zorn will do fine but don't crap on Gibbs.

Posted by: Zman | August 14, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

redskin outsider,

tell me something i don't know

Posted by: herb | August 14, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Zorn will need time and patience from Snyder to develop the younger players while trying to bleed some additional production for the aging vets on this team. Let's hope we can build through the draft over the next few years so this team can be mentioned in the same breath as the Cowboys or Giants. Anything more than 6 wins this year is gravy if you look at the schedule. Two games against Dallas, two against NY, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Cleveland, and a Philly team who should be much better than last year. Zorn is inheriting essentially the same team plus Jason Taylor. The two rookie WR's and rookie TE won't start or have much impact this year so let's be realistic. I'd be happy with better game management than we saw under Gibbs and consider this progress.

Posted by: wizfan89 | August 14, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse


Joe Gibbs undoubtedly had his gaffs. Gibbs acquired players like Adam Archuleta and Brandon Lloyd, fielded offenses that were extremely conservative, and made some poor decisions during games.

However, Joe Gibbs also made some fantastic personnel moves. Marcus Washington, Cornelius Griffin, Shawn Springs, London Fletcher, Mike Sellers, Phillip Daniels, Andre Carter, Casey Rabach, and Todd Collins were great free agent additions. Laron Landry, Sean Taylor (RIP), Reed Doughty, Rocky McIntosh, Anthony Montgomery, Kedric Golston, Chris Cooley, and Jason Campbell are, or at least appear to be, good to excellent draftees.

Moreover, although Gibbs failed to bring Washington another championship trophy, he took a team that was God awful to, at the very least, average. Two playoff appearances in four years is nothing to scoff at.

Every head coach states that his goal is to win a championship. Only a small percentage of head coaches win championships. You claim that only those coaches that actually achieve their stated primary goal (i.e., a Lombardi trophy) are winners and the remainder are losers. That kind of bright-line rule is neat, but it amounts to a major oversimplification.

Frankly, I detect a personal gripe. You've never made it a secret that you didn't care for Gibbs' ways of dealing with the press and it seems that you are allowing your personal feelings to affect your view of Gibbs 2.0. You've spun his legacy in a very negative light.

Don't get me wrong, I don't want to read rah-rah puff pieces. But, I don't want to read things that sound like they are written by an embittered journalist either. Try some balance next time.

Posted by: DPA6 | August 14, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Here's how I view the last four years, Gibbs changed the mentality here. There were so many stories of "the old ball coach" and before where players didn't take the game seriously, cell phones in meetings ect. ect. I think at the very least Joe brought back the redskins respectability a little and maybe even taught Daniel and Vinny a thing or two about winning. I know its early but the more I se of Zorn the more I think it was a brilliant hire. That being said.. I am a complete and total homer and when you say "we made the playoffs 2 out of 4 years" is defeatist I call it the truth no matter what you say they did it and as a fan who was so tired of listening to cowboy and eagle fans gloat I am so, so, thankful for Joe coming back and wouldn't trade this 4 years for anything if nothing else but for the Cowboy Games. Pure and simple some of the best I have ever seen, and will NEVER forget... Thanks Joe I don't care what anyone says..

Posted by: skinztattoo89 | August 14, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

I went to Prom with Jason La Canfora back in 1990 and I can tell you... He has not changed. The man is a joyless ball of negativity. Have some fun with this stuff. Be a journalist - but this is football - the greatest thing in the world.

Posted by: Cheryl Rosen | August 14, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

JCL, is is one of the best blog posting you have made!

You have provided objective analysis of Gibbs 2.0, and I think put forth a fair standard for evaluating Zorn.

Although, I think you did overlook the VC-Man. This is the first time, its truly Vinny's regimen and I really like what I see so far.

Like Gibbs 1.0, the Z-Man's success will greatly depend on the synergy with Vinny and the players he is given.

I think everyone is looking forward to his offense beginning to Gel, during the second half of the season. If the Skins can manage to go .500 during the first half of the season, the are going to do some damage during the second half.

In all candor, ironically, I think the Defense is what concerns me the most. As you pointed out, the Defense has carried the Redskins, during the past 4 years, but while it looks good on paper, its now -- old and fragile.

Admittedly, the Z-Man leaves the defense to Papaisito Blache, and I think he will do an amazing job. Although, my gut tells me that as the season goes on, there will be injuries, and they will be scab guys starting on Sunday, who were not even in the NFL in 2007. I hope that I am wrong.

But, in my opinion, the offense line, and (entire) defense needs an injection of talented youth or this franchise will continue to only tread water.

Posted by: Alobar | August 14, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

I may be to optomistic but I believe the skins make the playofs this year.

I;m 50 so I remember Gibbs 1.0 with pure affection. But the game had passed him by. No shame in that, just a reality of age and being gone to long. What is not said is I think he knew it. Thus the over budgeting for so many coaches. He was running a corporation with him as the CEO not a football team...

Couple of quick realistic reasons why I think the skins could be very good.

1) The should have beaten New York twice had them down.
2) Same with Green Bay had them beaten as Well.
3) Buffalo was a Joke loss at home.

Could even talk about a couple more But I think the above should have been realistic wins..

On every loss I blame the offense because they couldnt sustain drives or they became so conservative they put huge preasure on the defense..

If the defense can equal what they did last year I believe the new offense will win the kind of games this year that they lost last year.

Posted by: apb5919 | August 14, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Most "alleged" die hard Skins fans wear burgundy-tinted glasses when it comes to disecting this team, and I consider myself in that group sometimes. But when it comes to opinions and judgments of Gibbs, it gets down right ridiculous. Sentimentality rules the day with most around these parts, and it's got to stop. I'm already more impressed with Zorn than I was at any point during Gibbs 2.0. In two preseason games I've seen more efficiancy, more players "into it" than I did at any time during Gibbs 2.0, except maybe the two playoff runs.
Unfortunately for Zorn, he'll be judged by many more sentimental Gibbs-ers than objective realists, and unless he delivers a near-winning season this year they'll start calling for his head in less than 8 months.

Posted by: AJ | August 14, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Why is it that so many d-bags say that all those who think Gibbs did a good job are idiots, and other d-bags who think Gibbs did a bad job are idiots? Isn't there room for some balance here? He did some good things and some bad things for this team, but, for whatever reason, so many d-bags love to frame this debate as having only one of two very simple answers.

PS - I like the word/phrase d-bags.

Posted by: DPA6 | August 14, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

JLC needs to move on....really. Over the past few years it's been evident that he's had an axe to grind with Gibbs; JLC acts like Gibbs should've been consulting him on how the team should've been run. Gibbs got the team into the playoff 2 out of 4 years; that's more than many coaches did in the same span.

JLC...someday Snyder may call you to tap into that "high football IQ" you've been dying to unleash on the rest of the NFL, until then, see if you can get some time on Dr. Phil's couch to cope with the 'rejection'.

Posted by: Marc | August 14, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse


I think your treatment is fine as far as it goes, and I agree with you that the "Rah, rah, two playoff appearances" crowd is looking through rose colored glasses.

The problem, however, is that I think by glossing over it, you're underestimating how low the team was after Spurrier. The success of Gibbs II was in the following areas:

1) Restocking the roster with talent. Even prior to this last offseason, the roster had way more talent on it than it did four years before, entering the 2003-04 offseason. This was not a smooth or uniform process and they stubbed their toes a few times along the way, but by and large the Gibbs 2.0 staff did a good job identifying talent and getting it onto the roster.

2) Rebuilding the locker room. This team, dating back to Norv's tenure, had a lot of clubhouse lawyer types on it. Gibbs 2.0 showed all of the deftness he'd demonstrated during his first tenure in managing and motivating people. He got rid of the malcontents and replaced them with team players who got along with each other and who wanted desperately to succeed. This has spilled over to the early days of Zorn's tenure, and has made IMHO Zorn's job a lot easier. It's telling that despite weaknesses in other areas (see below), the players all uniformly praise and respect Gibbs even today, and I think that this factor is why.

The great failing of Gibbs 2.0 was on game day, IMHO. Gibbs I think realized early on how much development he'd missed in terms of game planning and scheming, knowing that he was not only not on the cutting edge as he used to be, but he was trailing far behind and struggling to catch up due to those dozen non-football years. I think this made him conservative. Add to this that he strangely thwarted Al Saunders' remaking of that offense, and you had a recipe for mediocrity, with sideline disorganization as the cherry on top.

I think if you want it reduced to numbers, I'd say that Gibbs 2.0 was certainly a mixed bag, perhaps a 60% success story and a 40% failure. I believe it's enough for Zorn to build on, however, which he seems enthusiastic about doing.

Posted by: redman | August 14, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Being a dedicated fan means thoroughly enjoyng the 'Skins of old under Gibbs 1.0 where we regularly went to the playoffs, going to 4 SuperBowls and winning 3 of them in 12 years. Being a dedicated fan also means sufferring through the excrutiating dry period of 11 years post Gibbs 1.0 when I witnessed this franchise get to the playoffs just 1 time and win 1 playoff game.

So let's objectively look at the 4 years of Gibbs II and analyze the period with all "laughin' " and "blindness" aside :-). In the 2nd year of Gibbs 2, the team makes the playoffs and wins a game with a thoroughly revamped roster from the Spurrier legacy. The 2005 roster had 18 out of 24 starters (offense-11, defense-11, punter 1, kicker-1) come through draft or free agency since 2004 - the beginning of the Gibbs 2 era. The only hold-overs from Spurrier were John Hall, Lavar, Samuels, Dockery, Jansen and Wynn. The offense was ranked 11 and the defense was ranked 9 in the league that year. Again, this was the second year of Gibbs 2 and the team had already accomplished the pinnacle of what was done the previous 11 years as it relates to playoff appearances and wins.

Now fast forward to 2007 where we find ourselves again in the playoffs - the 2nd time in 4 years. This playoff team had 1 starter from pre-Gibbs 2 - namely Chris Samuels (Jansen was placed on IR). This team fought through tragedy and unprecedented injuries to go on a tremendous playoff run down the stretch. That is now 23 out of 24 starters of this latest playoff team that have come through player acquisition under Cerrato/Snyder/Gibbs these past 4 years. The same team that outplayed their NFC East opponents in every game this season as they split the wins in the division. In fact they outplayed every NFC playoff team this year in the regular season except for Seattle whom they didn't get to play until the playoffs.

My point is that you can't look at this team today and tell me that we have not been successful in building through the draft or acquiring free agents. Coach Joe has filled the clubhouse with true "ballers" and left behind a legacy of toughness that will serve this team well. Keep in mind what the 'Skins did to the SuperBowl champions in week 15.

I am convinced that we had players that were good enough to win it all this year. We just ran into the most difficult team for our patch-work offensive line to play against given their inability to use the advantage of a snap count in the loudest stadium in the league. No excuses but Todd Collins got hammered due to an injury depleted line that had to play on the road. The "skins were talented enough to take the Giants road to the Super Bowl but playing Seattle on the road was the worst draw for them.

Posted by: DLS | August 14, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Mr Negative...someone at Redskins park really must have squirted in your corn flakes.

Posted by: Kevin | August 14, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Can we please stop playing the bitter journalist card everytime something is written that is critical of the Skins? I could care less whether JASNO likes the Skins or roots for them. In fact, I would rather he didn't so that I didn't have to sift through the Pollyannish drivel to get to the meat of the subject. If you want news, read the Post. If you want opinion, read the blog. Keep rolling, JASNO.

With that said, I am a life long fan - McPeak, Austin, Lombardi, Allen, etc. - so I have witnessed both the glory days in DC and those that were nearly too painful to endure. And from this fan's vantage point far removed from DC (although I was in Section 419 for the rout of the Cowboys last December!!), the Skins of Gibbs 2.0 were routinely unwatchable on the offensive side of the ball - supposedly Gibbs' area of expertise. I HTTR all day long but I was bored to tears with the offensive philosophy of our resident genius. And, the Skins were terribly inconsistent at best during his second tour of duty. Aside from the four or so winning streaks - 2 to 5 games - during the two playoff years, when did the Skins show any consistency on the field? I put the lack of consistency squarely on the coaching staff. Was it preparation, scheme or philosophy that held them back? Regardless, it still falls to the responsibility of the head coach. And speaking of philosophy, was anyone really that enamoured with the offense that played not to lose as opposed to playing to win? The Skins during JJG 1.0 would cut an opponent's heart out and show it to them while it was still beating. Not so during JJG 2.0. And, please don't rebut with they were protecting a young QB and allowing the defense to exert its will on the opponent. JJG's conservative offense kept too many inferior opponents in games and put too much pressure on a stellar defense that was routinely overworked. It was time for a change.

Hey, it's pre-season so every team and its fans (including the Skins) has playoff aspirations. Six wins? C'mon JASNO, it has got to be better than that. At least, I hope it is. If JASNO is correct, here is hoping that the Skins are playing better late in the year than at the beginning so as to give us hope for 2009 (a la JJG's 1st year). If they fail miserably and win six or less, I will continue to be a Zorn Star or Zorn long as Z keeps it interesting.

Posted by: JT in ABQ | August 14, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

This was a well-thought and well-written post, and makes a lot of sense. I'm a bit more optimistic than 6 wins, but even when the Skins won the last few years, I never felt any confidence in them. I certainly never felt the "we're unstoppable" sense I had in Gibbs 1.0. When we won, we barely held on after having a lead, when we lost, it was ugly.

I love Gibbs from 1.0, but 2.0 was just sad for me. I'm looknig forward to Zorn like I haven't looked forward to the Skins in a while. JlaC, keep up the good analysis. Don't listen to these bozos.

Posted by: The Marshal | August 14, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

"And rickmort, I would love to see the evidence that Jason La Canfora's work is "factually inaccuracies in some cases."

HAHA Nate in the PDX, your a J@ck@ss, you can't even cut and paste properly and I am supposed to justify my statements to you.

"If you're going to make a serious accusation like that "

AH-HAHA - Get out of here with your "serious accusation like that" statements. Serious accusation?!? Did I say Jason LaCan-FatRoundFaceAndStupidLookingGlasses wanted to kill someone? No, I didn't. So why don't you gain some perspective on things before you make and a$$ of yourself. Good ole LaCan-BeachBallHead writes his opinions for a living, he's not the leader of the free world.

You jackA$$.

Posted by: RICKMORT | August 14, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

"Good ole LaCan-BeachBallHead writes his opinions for a living, he's not the leader of the free world."

I would like to amend the above statement to read...

"Good ole LaCan-BeachBallHead writes his opinions for a living AND PASSES IT OFF AS NEWS, he's not the leader of the free world."

Thank you and good evening.

Posted by: RICKMORT | August 14, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

It doesn't matter.....I applaud Gibbs for coming back to compete against his ghost. That took alot of guts...(money didn't hurt either)

Gibbs did well enough to keep his legacy intact. I mean c'mon....Give the man a little cretdit for 2.0. Whne he arrived the franchise was in complete shambles after Ol' pitch and catch.

Gibbs coming back brought hope. Why? because he gave this franchise the greatest success in it's long history.

It's good to look forward....but you must look at the past to understand what to look forward to.

I think Gibbs coached one of the toughest seasons I can think of last season. He held that thing together. He deserves some credit for that.

After 12 years he comes back against himself if anything. 2 years in the playoffs no matter how it;s done in 4 years after being away 12 with the circumstances around his return. I think he did just fine.

Now if Bobby B had come back with him...heh heh heh who knows?

Posted by: Leevi | August 14, 2008 7:09 PM | Report abuse

I think JLC gives the defense especially with regard to last year, way too much credit. I watched this defense blow multiple score halftime leads at home and there is no way they could argue that they weren't well rested even with the offense sputtering a bit in the 2nd half. My point is that Gregg Williams cost this team as many wins as Gibbs did with his insistence on playing a soft cover 2 when this team did not have the front 4 talent to run that sort of scheme.

Having said that, last year I came to grips with the fact that Gibbs was ill suited for today's NFL. IN his day, the guy who put in the most hours won the day, and so Joe's approach was to outwork his opponents. Gibbs II did not have the same edge and did not realize that in this NFL, the guy who worked smarter, not harder won the day. This was seen in the area Gibbs was known for....making adjustments.

On both sides of the ball, it seemed over the past 4 years that once our opponent made adjustments, we failed to make effective counter-adjustments.

As to the question posed, I can't put a certain record out there and say I would or wouldn't accept it. The team is talented enough to win now. However, if they went out and put up a 6 win season, depending on how it happened would determine whether or not I as a fan could live with it. I personally think (and admit I am biased here) that we are going to sneak up on some teams this year.

Zorn is looking more than capable so far and I think on offense, he is bringing a fresh approach that has the team energized.

Posted by: Keino | August 14, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

To add upon, my earlier post. I totally disagree that Gibbs, was ill suited for todays NFL.

I believe Gibbs was ill suited to be an Offensive coordinator and GM, for today's NFL.

In Gibbs 2.0, if he found a young stud like Gregg Williams on the Offensive side of he ball, and had experienced GM, Gibbs, could have played the maestro/CEO Head Coach.. and there is no doubt in my mind, that the Redskins would have been back in the Super Bowl.

The problem is that Gibbs was out of date as an offensive coordinator during 2.0 and he had too many of 'his old school coaches' on that side of the ball, which created politics (w/ 900 Page play book Al), not productivity.

Had he hired someone to lead the Offensive with full autonomy, from the beginning -- it would have been a different story.

Furthermore, Gibbs had his strengths as a personal guy. Is there really any doubt about that? They guy knows how to spot character -- he rarely missed on acquiring quality people.

But rarely is a coach playing GM a successful outcome -- and there are reasons for this, that have nothing to do with Gibbs. The fact is, as Head Coach, Gibbs needed an objective GM to run player acquisition and management.

If he had an accomplished GM and Offensive Cord., Skins would have been in the super bowl.

Posted by: Alobar | August 14, 2008 7:37 PM | Report abuse

While Gibbs certainly didn't win a Super Bowl as he hoped, one can't deny he's had a tremendous impact on the organization. The Skins were a laughing stock when Spurrier left in 2003, and the entire culture of the team needed to be rebuilt. Joe Bugel has rebuilt our offense line into a consistently performing unit, GW brought pride back to the defense, and Gibbs showed Snyder the benefits of building a team and not hiring a new coach every 2 years. I just don't understand the purpose of this article, it's almost as if Jason enjoys taking shots at Joe when he's no longer around. 2 playoffs in 4 years isn't great, but I don't like the way Jason glosses over it as if it's no accomplishment at all. Also rallying a team from the death of a teammate meant nothing either, and I'm sure Coach La Canfora could've done that and won the Super Bowl.

Posted by: ashsra | August 14, 2008 7:38 PM | Report abuse

"Zorn inherits the chore of still trying to develop a stable QB for the franchise..."

Has Zorn actually called it a "chore?" Are those his words?

Posted by: For Real? | August 14, 2008 7:42 PM | Report abuse

What bothers me in his blog entries are the tone he sets.

The tone in this last piece regarding Gibbs was just nasty.

It seems like it is almost personal. Goes on and on trying to give what are HIS examples of why HE thinks Gibbs 2.0 was a failure.

For every one of his negatives, I have read a positive from the posts.

Keep the faith guys,good stuff is ahead.


Posted by: paulc | August 14, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

Anyone here remember the week leading up to that delicious Sunday night victory against Minnesota? All we heard was how the Vikings were so tough, top run-defense, top run-offense, this, that, the next thing.

But the Redskins went into a very tough environment in a prime time, must-win-game (for both teams) and played nearly flawless in dominating the Vikings. This with their backup QB, the entire right side of their line composed of backups, no Rocky McIntosh, and no Sean Taylor (God bless you, Sean). Gibbs made up for his double-TO error against Buffalo with a brilliant challenge (of course he graciously and humbly gave credit to the guys in the booth as any good leader should do).

Something tells me if the Redskins season scenario were transposed to another team and that team lost their starting QB in Week 12, had their best defensive player murdered (after already losing starting CB and starting OLB to season-ending injuries and playing all season with a makeshift right side of the offensive line) and they rallied to make the playoffs by winning 4 games - including beating the eventual Super Bowl champs on the road - then we'd be hearing what a great job that coach did.

"Boy Jason, you're so brave for getting into the lions den and telling all those burgundy-and-gold-colored-lens' fans The Truth." Please. I understand this is a blog and it's for opinion, but when the opinion is so blatantly distorted as to be placed under the worst possible light then its no longer credible.

I have no problem with criticism of the Redskins - that's the job - but this is the exclamation point to a year-long 'journalistic' pattern of never blaming the players for screwing up, never blaming Al Saunders for his 700-page playbook (anyone remember when Weird Al was given free reign to run our offense in the first half of '06? All those cutesy bubble screens and reverses that the offensive linemen complained about? Want that again???)and finding a million ways to blame Gibbs. Yes, as head coach he deserves criticism for his mistakes - and there were plenty (bringing in Al Saunders ranks at the top, not letting J-La run the offense is number 2 apparently) - but the fact that the Gibbs beatdown STILL continues even after he's retired is ridiculous.

I can already see how this season will play out in the Post under J-La's byline: If Jim Zorn wins 11 games its because he 'changed everything' from that disoriented senior citizen Gibbs, and if he loses 11 games its because Gibbs absolutely destroyed this franchise during his second tenure. Right it down folks, 'cause its coming. You heard it here first.

Posted by: Red Skinz | August 14, 2008 9:02 PM | Report abuse

We didn't win multiple super bowls the second round with Joe Gibbs. But let's not forget that he returned the team to respectability. After Norv Turner extended run of mediocrity, we then had Marty ball where the team didn't even show until 7 games into the season, and then the total disaster of Spurrier. After all those years of being awful, Gibbs got us in the playoffs twice in four years and left things much better than he received them. I'm excited about Zorn, but if we win only 6 games, I'll be very disappointed.

Posted by: Mr Shneably | August 14, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

It s important to note that the players these fans are most excited about seeing under Zorn are Gibbs' guys. To just name a few; Cooley, Campbell, Landry, Moss, Randle El, that late Sean Taylor would've been there, Fletcher, etc.. How many players, real Skins, fan favorites, did this team have before Gibbs came back?

Didn't the draft get crucified by JLC's colleagues this year? Does Zorn not take any blame for that? I just didn't ever see the negativity like JLC does/did.

I guess the problem Zorn faces is the same problem Gibbs faced, being judged against Gibbs' first stint-- a decade of greatness.

Posted by: Eric | August 14, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

JLC will be out on his ass within 2 years. He has no "insider info," less respect among the players, and even less among his colleagues and "friends" (i.e., those of us at the WaPo who must nod hello to him but think he's a waste of space).

Posted by: Anonymous | August 14, 2008 10:19 PM | Report abuse

The Anon who posted the above post typed on my computer and does not work at the WaPo and does not know JLC. So, needless to say, he doesn't know JLC, his co-workers or friends.

That said, I don't care for the negativity in JLC's blog entry.

Posted by: dpa6 | August 14, 2008 10:45 PM | Report abuse

I am awfully late getting into the game on this Jason Post.

Gibbs certainly had the advantage of having more experience.
Yet Zorn does have advantage of continuity w/ roster and several coaches remaining.

Gibbs inherited a mess and Zorn inherits a playoff team that I feel finished last season so united due to Gibbs leadership during the tragedy and aftermath of Sean Taylor being murdered.

Gibbs had a great D in 2004 and 2005 and his offense was at times woeful as Brunnell was aging and certainly beyond his prime.
Zorn on the other hand has a QB in JC who is improving, gaining confidence.

The division is much tougher now thus it is harder for Zorn than Gibbs 2.0. The irony is the division is so similar to the days of Gibbs 1.o.

I do agree w/ Jason that any other coach might have been gone after the 06 team that was 5-11. But you know what 3 Super Bowl victories and winning seasons in ten seasons from 81-92 will earn you mercy in most fields in this world.

Posted by: RedskinRay1 | August 14, 2008 11:03 PM | Report abuse

super bowl here we come baby!

Posted by: laxbigj | August 14, 2008 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Now it all makes sense to me. Earlier I read this post and was wondering why once again is he rehashing Gibbs and making moronic points about keeping the defensive staff and bringing in a new offensive staff as an indictment on Gibbs. Because I know if I was running a West Coast offense as a head coach I'd want a bunch of coaches who've never run a West Coast offense right Jason?

But then it all made sense to me when I read Mike Wise a few minutes ago. Cerrato takes a couple of shots at JLC. I'm sure Wise talked to JLC after the interview and as a premptive strike Jason takes a shot at the organization to make himself feel better.

It's time to grow up Jason.

Posted by: CVille | August 14, 2008 11:37 PM | Report abuse

I think the challenge of "going home again" cannot be understated, and seems to be beyond the understanding of the myopic JLC.
The expectations of a returning hero are nearly impossible to meet. Gibbs left the team alot better than he found it, made the playoffs twice (with alot of key injuries), held the team together during the Taylor tragedy, and restored Redskin pride to some degree. He may not have reached the Hall of Fame heights of his first go round, but Gibbs should receive more praise than the constant slamming that JLC gives him.

I hope Zorn wins 10 super bowls, but lets at least wait a few regular season games before comparing him to Gibbs.

Posted by: cabraman | August 14, 2008 11:44 PM | Report abuse

Joe Gibbs should be considered the man who turned around the Washington Redskins. We were horrible for many years and there was no end in sight. Synder couldn't do anything right. This was the only coach he would let do his job. Anyone else would be fired and Synder needed to learn the patience that the game requires. THere was great excitement in the area for the first time since his last era. And for the first time everyone related to the skins had high expectations and will for the years to follow. No he wasn't as good as expected. But he served an important part in the franchise development. I'm expected a good year from Zorn. Think he is a good coach and he has an established team. Hopefully they can pick up the passing game quick and make a late season run.

Posted by: HB | August 15, 2008 12:43 AM | Report abuse

It seems that JLC could look at Gibbs December record and find a reason to slight it.

Let's face it, Gibbs failed to live up to Gibbs. But the Redskins have been brought back to respectability.

If he left this team in such a mess than why prior to PD's injury were they returning 22 starters?

Posted by: For Real? | August 15, 2008 1:00 AM | Report abuse

The late-season 2007 rally was the most enjoyable stretch for this Redskins fan in over 15 years (since the Jan 1992 Super Bowl win). To compare (directly or indirectly) Joe Gibbs, Hall of Fame coach who has attained the highest levels of success in two major sports, to Jim Zorn, a fine gentleman who has never served as an NFL offensive coordinator and was, at best, the organization's third choice for the job, is a great disservice to both men. I wish Zorn and the Redskins all the best in 2008 (and hope Zorn joins the Mt. Rushmore of Redskin coaches alongside Gibbs and George Allen) but cannot bear to read another article/blog post comparing a legend to a novice head coach who happens to be 2-0 in the preseason.

Posted by: Phlynn | August 15, 2008 1:47 AM | Report abuse

The Joe Gibbs II era was a great success, because it lifted us out of the severe dysfunction we had been mired in since Joe Gibbs I. The Al Saunders hiring was the right move at the time, because we needed to evolve offensively. We just needed to have an experienced quarterback in that system at the helm, and that was Todd Collins. When Saunders arrived, Brunell would have been best to have been put aside, and we would have had a lot of success. Jason Campbell could have continued to develop as heir apparent.

However, the way things worked out in my mind really is for the best, because we end up with Jim Zorn when Joe Gibbs felt that it was time for him to leave the stage. Zorn is the perfect coach for us today, and Campbell has the right offense I think for him to be successful.

So, alls well that ends well, and I think that Gibbs II made all of this possible by resurrecting an organization that was spiriutally dead and drifting, and getting us on the road again and well down it. That was something that perhaps under the circumstances only Joe Gibbs could have done. Thank God he did it. Thank you, Joe.

Posted by: Jonathan | August 15, 2008 2:42 AM | Report abuse

A little surprised to see JLaC putting the boot into Gibbs like this given the glowing terms in which he spoke about him just after he retired in January. I do think he makes some valid points though about how anaemic and conservative the offense was and how the defense often bailed the team out. I also agree that anyone other than Joe would probably have been shown the door after that 3rd season.

I'm optimistic about Zorn. He seems to be running a pretty smooth operation at the moment and seems very calm and measured. The opening two pre-season games have been good in the sense that the procedural and mental mistakes that too often characterised Gibbs 2.0 have been largely absent. I also like the genuine enthusiasm and excitement that the players seem to have at the moment. I really believe that there is a lot of talent on that roster and they just need someone to come along and point them in the right direction. I like what I've seen of Zorn so far and I'm hopeful he's the man to do this. I think we'll win more than 6 games this year and I would honestly be disappointed if we don't make the playoffs as I don't see many teams in the NFC that are a lot better than us. For me though, the keys are keeping people healthy for a change and also how JC plays. If Zorn can elevate the play of JC then he should eclipse Gibbs 2.0.

Posted by: tartanskin | August 15, 2008 5:13 AM | Report abuse

If Zorn does well a lot of it will be due to Gibbs 2.0 installing a will and toughness in the Skins. We have flat out tough players right now and that will help Zorn.

As for 2 playoffs in 4 years - is that success? For me, yes, concidering where the teeam was to where it is now. I am not an advocate of firing a solid coach just because he didnt make a run at the championship every year. I like what the Rooneys did w/ Bill Cowher, there were several time when Pitt didnt make the playoffs and he kept his job. That is great ownership and hopefull what Dan Snyder is starting to act like.

Posted by: NC | August 15, 2008 6:59 AM | Report abuse

I agree with a number of the commenters here that Jason is off-base on a number of assertions here.

First, contrary to Jason's claim that no one not named Joe Gibbs would have stayed around past year three, I would say that Gibbs' four-year tenure in Washington was very similar to Parcells' recent tenure in Dallas. I think Gibbs was 4 games under .500 and Parcells was 2 games over .500. Both took storied franchises who had fallen on truly dismal/5-11 times and restored them to respectability both in the NFC east and overall. Both made the playoffs twice (Gibbs even won a playoff game) and both left 9-7 competitive teams. Neither reached their prior success but both left their teams substantially better off.

Second, Jason is wrong (as he has been consistently) that the Redskins failed to evaluate talent on their roster. The Redskins have let one player go in the last 7-8 years that was a mistake at the money that player was aksing. And that is Antonio Pierce (who was found--not discarded--in 2004). What is that talent on the Redskins roster Jason is talking about: we had Ramsey handing off to Betts throwing to Gardner and Coles. I think we are better off at every position now. Who else? Guys who left recently. LaVar? Robert Royall? Derrick Dockery was drafted in 2003 and was a nice player that we coached up but he received $49 over 7 years (with 18.5 mil guaranteed) last year. Even letting Freddie go at the king's ransom he got (13.5 guaranteed) looks good in retrospect. What is amazing looking back, frankly, is how very bad the talent on that 2003 team was.

I get his analysis on a number of points but I don't think he gives Gibbs his due for taking a miserable 2003 post-Spurrier team and returning them to a real position of respectability, toughness, and integrity.

Posted by: JamesTuthill | August 15, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

While Gibbs 2.0 didn't meet my lofty and unrealistic expectations, I couldn't be happier that he came back and restored respectability to a franchise that had become perhaps the laughingstock of the league.

He coached and treated his players with the utmost dignity and his coaching job last year may have been the best I've ever seen. On top of that, I give him credit for never throwing players under the bus and for bringing in a roster FULL of quality guys who don't embarrass the team off the field and are ready to do great things on it.

Gibbs 1.0 was one of the most dominant runs in NFL history but Gibbs 2.0 was a different kind of success -- he brought us back from the depths and made us RELEVANT again. During the Spurrier years, in particular, we were getting blown out left and right; with Gibbs, we were in darn near every game and became a physical team - on both sides of the ball - that other teams had no interest in playing. None.

And, I can't (re)emphasize enough that he has brought in a roster full of quality people who are ready to make a run.

Thank God Joe came back!

Posted by: RW Skins | August 15, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I am a huge fag!

Posted by: Jason LaCanfora | August 15, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

You don't get it at all! Do you remember what it was like before Gibbs came back?YOU CLEARLY ARE NOT A REDSKIN FAN!Things have moved along well and the coaching staff is still a bunch of Gibbs people so is the front office.This team is much better off then it would have been had Gibbs not come back!YOU JUST DONT GET IT!YOU SUCK AT YOUR JOB AND YOUR NO REDSKIN INSIDER!You seem to hate the skins and take shots at them every chance you get!GO AWAY

Posted by: jcb | August 16, 2008 7:36 AM | Report abuse

granted gibbs 2.0 did not bare the same success that his first tenure did, but i think what gibbs did his second go around was to create a culture that was lacking since dan synder bought the team. no disrespect the snyder but he wasn't a football man to begin with...with gibbs returned he recreated the redskins...created a sense of pride and loyalty for the organization itself, so although he didn't have the same success victory wise, i think gibbs 2.0 was crucial to defining for snyder a redskins culture

Posted by: allen | August 16, 2008 3:09 PM | Report abuse

JLC continues to show why the post gets out scooped at Redskins Park. The Skins were a mess under Spurrier. Gibbs came in and cleaned up the ball coaches mess and restored sanity to the franchise.

Isn't there someone else at the post than can cover the team? JLC clearly hates the Skins, which isn't shocking considering he is from B-more.

Posted by: Get a real beat writer | August 18, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

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