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Through All the Smoke, Redskins Hire Joe Barry as New DC

Joe Barry

After interviewing seven candidates for their vacant defensive coordinator job — including names like Wade Phillips and Vic Fangio (!) — the Redskins hired former Chargers linebackers coach Joe Barry to take over and turn around a dismal unit from a season ago.

Why to Like this Hire:

– The last time Barry served as a defensive coordinator was in 2007-2008, when he worked under head coach Rod Marinelli for two years in Detroit. It was that 2008 Lions squad that had the pee-wee defense, the not-much-better offense, and ultimately the 0-16 record. Is is it safe to assume he’s more motivated than ever to turn his career around and show that he’s deserving of a top-coaching role?

– Speaking of which, he probably learned a lot from going winless in a season, right?

“I think the way you grow, the way you get better, it’s not when things are easy and comfortable,” Barry said, according to Zac Boyer of the Washington Times. “When things are tough, that’s when you learn.”

Why to Not Like this Hire:

– Remember the rumor from two weeks ago that Washington had hired Barry as their defensive coordinator? Then Twitter blew up the Redskins, every fan hated the hire, and all of sudden the team was out interviewing other candidates because the job search “wasn’t over yet”. Well, now, yeah — Barry’s the guy.

– Not to speak for everyone, but I’m more concerned about Barry’s only defensive coordinator job coming at the hand of his father-in-law (Marinelli) than I am about the actual 0-16 record he posted when he held the position. Anyone?

– The Washington Redskins were the only team to interview Barry for a defensive coordinator job this year.

– Barry has ties to (guess who!) Bruce Allen. The Tampa Connection stays true.

– And keeping that Tampa Connection in mind, how about this popular rumor, most recently touched on by JP Finlay of CSNWashington:

One popular rumor suggested that should Fangio come, he would bring his assistants, namely Ed Donatell. Bringing Donatell meant the release of current secondary coach Raheem Morris, an assistant coach with ties to Allen from their days in Tampa together. Since that rumor’s proliferation, it has been widely shut down, but what is known now is Fangio and Donatell are in Chicago, and Morris and Barry are in Washington. It should be noted, additionally, that Morris hired Barry in Tampa after he lost his job running the Lions defense.

– With what appeared to be Vic Fangio and Ed Donatell in their sights, the Redskins wound up with a non-sought after linebackers coach who Bruce Allen JUST SO HAPPENS TO KNOW.

Go figure.

Redskins Hire Bill Callahan as Offensive Line Coach

Bill Callahan

According to ESPN’s Ed Werder, the Redskins have hired former Cowboys assistant Bill Callahan to replace Chris Foerster as the offensive line coach in Washington.

This news comes just a couple days following the report that Foerster was granted permission to interview with the Bills, where he’d join the recently hired Rex Ryan in Buffalo.

This is solid step for the Redskins. Sure, the talent needs to be upgraded along the front line, but Callahan is well-respecteda and versatile in style. He’ll fill a position of need in Washington.

Now just keep your fingers crossed for Vic Fangio.

  1. Started his NFL coaching career in 1995, including stints as a head coach in Oakland from 2002-2003, and a college head coach at Nebraska from 2004-2007  (back)

Redskins Wisely Hand the Keys to Scot McCloughan


With the Scot McCloughan hire now official in Washington, here’s a few more notes regarding the Redskins new general manager and the kick in the ass it gives the organization.

– Covering your eyes and withholding your excitement? No one can blame you. While the addition of a proven guy like McCloughan is great for any team, we all know how good the Redskins a are at screwing things up. You have more than enough reason to stay medium and tread cautiously.

As a healthy argument, however, know this: Scot McCloughan didn’t need to take a job. Sure, he longed to be part of a team again, to lead a front office, to build a Super Bowl champion machine, etc. But from all reports and information, he wasn’t desperate. Instead, he required a perfect situation in which he was provided full control of personnel and front office.

That said, we have no reason to doubt b the Redskins have legitimately handed McCloughan the keys to the team, otherwise he wouldn’t have inked the deal.

— As mentioned before, having Bruce Allen serve as team president isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When it comes to crunching cap numbers, throwing political weight, planning team functions, weighing in on uniform choices, and serving as the team ambassador, Allen fits the bill quite well. And his tight BFF relationship with Dan Snyder could eventually serve as a healthy go-between for McCloughan.

— And yes, according to reports, McCloughan and Allen have a good relationship with one another.

— While I do believe this is arguably the best move Dan Snyder has made since purchasing the team over a decade ago, I also don’t expect this organization to be turned around in a summer. If you read about McCloughan’s style and what he looks to do long-term, that described culture change and strong locker room is impossible to create with the flick of a switch.

Additionally, even as a huge fan of McCloughan’s draft classes as a whole, clearly he’s seen his fair share of misses. But you can say the same thing for every other general manager and talent evaluator out there.

No McCloughan isn’t perfect. No he won’t snipe every mid-round gem in every draft class. No he won’t have the Redskins playing in February next year. The point is, he’s the first knowledgeable, respected football brain this organization has had overseeing personnel since Bobby frickin’ Beathard, and hiring him was the first step in the right direction.

If you’re not excited quite yet, you have a better grasp on your emotions than me. But at the very least, it’s almost impossible to not feel the relief.

  1. ie. Dan Snyder  (back)
  2. I know, I know…  (back)

Report: Redskins to Hire Scot McCloughan as GM


At one point we were left thinking, “But Scot McCloughan is too good to come to Washington.”

Now, according to multiple reports on Twitter, the Redskins are set to hire Scot McCloughan as their next general manager. As a result, Bruce Allen would then serve as team president.

It should also be noted, however, that others are saying a deal isn’t done yet.

More to come.

Redskins Finally Ditch Defensive Coordinator Jim Haslett


There’s still people out there defending Jim Haslett and calling him a good defensive coordinator; and for all I know, maybe they’re right. But in football (as in any business), your production and/or performance dictates whether you stay or go, and for that reason the Redskins have moved on from Haslett after five seasons.

Those defending Haslett will likely use things like “they didn’t invest in the defense” and “lots of injuries” as supporting arguments, but it ultimately boils down to Haslett overseeing a miserable unit. During the Reign of the Haz, the Redskins ranked 30th in points allowed per gamea and 29th in expected points added by team defenseb.

Good riddance. This move was overdue.

  1. Note: that’s not good.  (back)
  2. Note: this isn’t good either  (back)

Players Exchange Punches at Redskins Practice

Wide receiver Andre Roberts and rookie cornerback Bashaud Breeland exchanged a quick series of punches in practice on Wednesday, probably because they play for a dreadful, hardly professional football team.

For the uneventful video clip (in its entirety), you can click here or here.

This organization continues to be the laughing stock of the league.

Cloudy with a Chance of Knee Jerk: Redskins v. Colts

Money to Burn

In the hours following a Redskins game, thoughts and ideas and assumptions run rampant through the mind of a Washington fan, forcing a scattered and cloudy backdrop between the ears. 

Here are my initial notes following the Redskins’ 49-27 loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

* * *

— This team becomes harder and harder to watch each and every week. Sure, the record sucks and the losing is terrible, but even more frustrating is the time you waste as a fan. The umpteen Sunday afternoons that you won’t ever get back because you sat down and prepared yourself for a three-hour game you thought would be different. I blame myself.

— Despite his attractive stat line, Colt McCoy wasn’t perfect. However, generally when you throw for nearly 400 yards and three touchdowns, that’s good enough to win the game. The returned fumble for a score was ugly, but I probably didn’t hate McCoy as much as others.

— This may sound weird, but I was a little surprised at how bad the offensive line looked. Not because I think they’re particularly good, but because I believe effective quarterback play can improve the line’s play. Again, McCoy wasn’t perfect, but the offensive line (before watching the tape) was probably responsible for a majority of Indy’s six sacks.

— The Redskins had five fumbles in this game. FIVE. Only one was lost (for a score), thank goodness. But FIVE FUMBLES?!

— Glad to see that third-down conversion rate is picking up — 5-for-15 on Sunday.

— The Redskins committed 10 penalties in this game, which is kind of equivalent to macing yourself four times. Even better, the Colts committed 10 penalties as well (for 94 yards!) and the Redskins still couldn’t keep it close.

— Early in the game, the defense was able to force some turnovers (fumble, then interception), but unfortunately Washington couldn’t capitalize on offense. My guess: the offense was so shocked that the defense was actually capable of doing anything worth a shit, that when they did finally see something good come from the unit, they got excited, peed on themselves, and figured three points was just dandy.

— IN FACT, the Redskins have generated SIX turnovers the last two weeks, yet somehow have only been able to make six points out of it. Without doing math stuff, that’s hardly understandable based solely on the logic of probability. Or something like that.

— How ’bout a bright spot? Tight end Jordan Reed finished the game with nine catches for 123 yards. He’s so, so good when he’s healthy.

— But those bright spots don’t last long. Let’s take a look at defensive coordinator Jim Haslett and the Redskins defense in all their utter disappointment and filth. What a miserable unit. On a football field, this Washington defense is a disaster with legs. Jim Haslett MUST GO after this year. Seriously — all that talk about entering 2014 as an unshackled coordinator was bogus and Jay Gruden needs to be just as assertive with his coaches as he is with his players.

— And I don’t put everything on Jim Haslett. Most of it, but not all of it. Ryan Clark and Brandon Meriweather are the Redskins starting safeties and their talents COMBINED don’t equal an average starter in the deep half. They’re awful.

— Additionally, why is David Amerson always lost? If there’s more than one guy running in his general vicinity, his head begins to rotate on its axis and his legs just frantically carry him to the closest guy wearing opposing colors. It’s absurd.

— You know what’s fun? Getting TORCHED by Coby Fleener for 127 yards and two scores (should’ve been three if not for a blatant drop), as well as a rookie wideout Donte Moncrief a who went for 134 yards and two touchdowns. They were wide open all day.

— With a decent defense, 27 points is enough to win football games in the NFL. But the Redskins defense barely scratches the surface as a good minor league unit, and that’s why those 27 points are nothing more than stuffing and fluff.

— Here’s a tweet from Washington Post beat reporter Mike Jones. It’s sad and pitiful and brutal and hilarious, all at the same time.

— It’d feel good to orchestrate some type of holdout among fans that gives team owner Dan Snyder about 50,000 empty seats in each of the Redskins’ final three homes games.

— If I were you — and I am in fact me — I wouldn’t give this team anymore money. That doesn’t mean you can’t be a fan and root for them and tune in on gamedays. But in terms of jerseys, apparel, and my gracious, fucking season tickets (!), don’t do it. If you want to light money on fire like that, email me and I’d be more than happy to take it off your hands.


  1. who I loved coming out, by the way  (back)
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