I don’t know where to start.
That’s not me admitting to writer’s block; there’s just so many things wrong with the Washington Redskins these days that it’s impossible to rank one over all of the others. But for the sake of this article: let’s just start from the top and work our way down.
Mike Shanahan has got to go. It was apparent before, but after today’s myriad reports of the Head Coach’s desire to resign after last season, plus the dismal, listless performance of his team against the Kansas City Chiefs, it’s more clear than ever. Keeping him around the locker room any longer is akin to shooting toxins directly into the team’s veins. His relationship with Robert Griffin III is irreparable. His son, OC Kyle, has handled play calling duties worse than Mike handles press conferences, and that’s saying a lot, considering he gave a flat “no comment” when asked if he even wanted to coach the team any longer. Simply, it’s time for a change.
Now, I could go through all of the team’s failures in the KC game, but that’s tiring, and you’ve heard them all before anyway. Bad OL play, inaccurate throws from RGIII, no defense whatsoever, the worst special teams unit I’ve personally ever seen. It’s nothing new for the 2013 ‘Skins. So instead, I want to look at potential HC candidates if (read: when) Mike Shanahan gets curb-stomped.
Cincinnati Bengals DC Mike Zimmer
His units have consistently been ranked near the top of the NFL, and would likely bring back a 4-3 defensive scheme to Washington, something that would fit the current defenses’s talents much better than the 3-4 they use now. He is highly respected around the league and has been considered for numerous HC vacancies over the last few years. The last defensive-minded head coach the Redskins had was Marty Schottenheimer back in 2001. It’s time for another one.
Baylor University HC Art Briles
Besides the obvious RGIII connection, Briles is a great offensive mind that has continued the success of the RGIII era with completely different players, and has even gotten himself a respectable defense this season. People will scoff at this and say that RGIII has too much decision-making power, but Briles is a darn good football coach and would be a worthy candidate for the position.
Stanford University HC David Shaw
He recruited RGIII at Stanford (albeit, as a receiver), and has consistently won with less talent than other major schools. He already runs a pro-style offense and always had a tough, aggressive defense. One of the hotter names out there in terms of NFL head coach candidates, Shaw would bring a level-headed, workmanlike approach to Washington and would likely stop all of the read-option plays and spread offensive schemes being run by the Shanaclan, which, depending on your position, is either good or bad. I think it would be good, and that Shaw would be an excellent hire by Dan Snyder.
Cincinnati Bengals OC Jay Gruden
Yes, the other Bengals coordinator is also on my Redskins wish list. He’s been an important piece in Andy Dalton’s progression as a passer, and changes up his play calling effectively to always keep opposing defenses off-balance. He would maximize the talents of RGIII, and right now, that might be the Redskins biggest need for the future: someone who won’t screw RGIII up. His brother John is a Super Bowl winning coach; it’s time to see if that gene runs in the family.
Of course, there are other candidates out there, and being Dan Snyder, it’s best to always expect the unexpected (after all, did anyone expect Joe Gibbs to come out of retirement?). However, the four names above are four that I think Redskins fans will be hearing a lot of in the next few weeks.
Who would you prefer to be the next (potential) coach of the Redskins? Sound off in the comments below, and then go have a good cry. As Redskins fans, you deserve it.