The Washington Redskins are a franchise in need of a complete overhaul. Their current roster is lacking talent, and recent reports indicate that favoritism shown by ownership has pushed the coaching staff to the door. Considering the team’s miserable 2013 campaign, it’s likely that owner Daniel Snyder will hold the door as he ushers yet another coaching staff out. With so many problems in Washington, what needs to be done to right one of the worst run franchises in the league?
First and foremost, and I know this may be difficult for a fan-turned owner like Snyder, the Redskins need to find the right football people to lead the team. Sure, there’s room for Snyder’s input in relation to the day-to-day functions of the organization, but the football aspect needs to be ran by football people. The NFL is a highly competitive league, and teams that suffer ownership’s interferences are at a huge disadvantage compared to teams that employ the right people to make decisions about the team that plays on Sundays.
Obviously, the current regime of coaches hasn’t meshed well with the organization as a whole. There is quite obviously serious rifts between quarterback Robert Griffin III, head coach Mike Shanahan and owner Daniel Snyder. In all reality, those problems won’t fix themselves, and with so many egos involved, the Redskins really need to hit the reset button, and that means Shanahan won’t be back next season.
Since purchasing the Washington Redskins in 1999, Daniel Snyder has seen his team make the postseason just four times, winning a total of two playoff games. In that same time period, the Redskins have been headed by seven different coaches. With such limited success and a high level of turnover at the top of the coaching staff, it’s clear that Snyder’s tactics haven’t worked.
After the coming coaching overhaul and subsequent stepping out of the limelight by Snyder, the Redskins need to begin developing an identity. If Robert Griffin III is their quarterback moving forward, and there’s no reason to believe he’s not, Washington has to put weapons around him that allow him to run a successful offense. At the same time, Griffin needs to be able to develop into a passer first that has exceptional athleticism. If he can’t stay healthy, he’s of little value to his team, making his ability to be effective without taking hits downfield of paramount importance.
Finally, and this will be tough for any Redskins fan to hear, the team needs to be patient. Some teams are able to make quick turnarounds, such as the Indianapolis Colts or Kansas City Chiefs, but the conditions have to be right for such dramatic improvement, and that may not be the case in Washington. Snyder has to realize that there’s no magic bullets in the NFL, and the road back to prominence in the NFC East will be a difficult one to take. In other words, the Redskins need to pick the right people to lead the team and follow through by allowing those people to do their jobs without interruption for more than a season or two.
The Redskins are a franchise with a huge amount of history and pride, but that hasn’t allowed them to escape mediocrity over the past couple of decades. In the NFL, there’s always a way back to the top, but management has to be willing to take the patient approach to get there. Since taking over as owner, Daniel Snyder has sabotaged his own team by changing directions every other season. That’s not the way strong, long-lasting teams are built, and to turn the Redskins around, Snyder must first make a decision and then follow through with it concerning the franchise that he owns. If he’s unable to do that, it’ll be more of the same for years to come in Washington.