And Joe sayeth, go forth and mack your hoes and yea the Cristal flowed
Curly R has already commented on the central topic of this story here, when it was revealed that Joe Gibbs is allowing at least some of his players to conduct off-season workouts on their own. My position is this is a bad idea and is compromising a central philosophy of Joe's: Coach knows best. Although never taken to name-calling (TimesSelect) or ridiculous fines, Joe has always been a control freak on the order of the Old School. Remember sleeping on the couch? Snow on his car at Redskins Park from being there overnight?
Even as Bobby Beathard was resigning in May of 1989 (not before trading draft picks for Gerald Riggs and Earnest Byner), ostensibly to get back to southern California, there were stories that Bobby and Joe were in conflict. Bobby was in charge of stocking the team, but Joe made the roster and decided who played. In that conflict was forged a decade of good football.
It hasn't gotten a lot better since Joe came back either. After telling Patrick Ramsey that Patrick had Joe's confidence, Joe immediately goes out and trades a third-round draft pick (oh, like the TJ Duckett deal) for Mark Brunell when if Joe had waited a day or two could have had him for nothing since the Jaguars were about to release him. Then he signs Mark to a seven-year 43 million dollar contract, way overpaying for services and totally undercutting Patrick.
Continuing to look at the free agents brought in under Joe and the stick-rate of draft picks, it's obvious to me that Joe can't do this alone, and Vinny Cerrato and Dan Snyder don't count as help. And Len Shapiro should be forced to watch footage of the Dave Shula Bengals for suggesting that Charley could come back to the Redskins and be an effective GM.
So it's all still a bit disappointing to read Howard Bryant in the Washington Post today digging into the details of how Joe came to his revelation that players should be on their own for conditioning. I have disclaimed that I know little about the details and Howard shines a little more light, but it all seems to me to be throwing up of hands and admitting that the players run the show now. Let's walk through this piece a bit:
Renaldo Wynn, Phillip Daniels and Clinton Portis told Joe after the October 29 2006 bye week that they thought Joe had worked them too hard, too early after the 2005 season, and that because they had been worked too hard, the players were breaking down physically.
Hunh? Are you telling me that part-time workouts starting in March made you too tired to work in October? I thought the narrative was that the Redskins' 2006 training camp was too wimpy, that the team didn't work hard enough or get in good enough condition to start the season. So it's actually that the team was too tired from a grueling offseason of part-time workouts and training camp wasn't soft enough for the players to get back their stamina in time for the season. Give me a fucking break. Ladell Betts and the offensive line might disagree with the assertion that they were too worn out because they never got a week off and played well through the end.
Joe even reveals his workout philosophy as he is capitulating to the players: winning begets winning. 2004 workouts started early, 2005 workouts started earlier and the team was better and went to the playoffs. Joe's inner voice is telling him, start 2006 earlier, work harder, make 'em a family, roar into the 2006 season. Instead the wheels came off but I don't believe conditioning had anything to do with 2006 (for those just joining us it was injuries, lack of control by Joe and bad playcalling).
Repent for the Joe Gibbs end days are upon us.
Joe Gibbs: Toni L. Sandys / Washington Post