- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 5, 2000

Norv Turner is history as head coach for the Washington Redskins. Finito. Toast. Outta here. Fans fired him in 1998, when the team started the season 0-7. Owner Daniel Snyder just didn't make it official until yesterday, following the embarrassing 9-7 home loss Sunday afternoon to the New York Giants.
Turner had one year and $1 million remaining on his contract. By comparison, the Redskins are in a must-win situation. All fans can do now is keep hope alive with one of Turner's offensive assistants, Terry Robiskie, who is interim coach.
Snyder had little choice. He could have left Turner alone until the post-season. But really. What would have been the point of dragging things on? Fans did not have to compare Turner's record to that of successful Redskins coaches, or even other NFL coaches, to know that he was mediocre at best.
Sports is big business; winning and money are everything. No NFL owner's wallet knows that better than Snyder's. He set a new NFL standard this season when he committed $100 million in salaries and bonuses to create a super team. He brought in veterans, including quarterback Jeff George and defensive end Bruce Smith, and he brought in marquee players such as Deion Sanders. He handed over big bucks to running back Stephen Davis and defensive end Marco Coleman, and to rookies LaVar Arrington and Chris Samuels. Add to that Ray Rhodes' simplified and effective defense and Dan Snyder saw Super Bowl written all over the Redskins' destiny.
Turner can thank the late Jack Kent Cooke for giving him his first head coaching job in 1994, and fans in turn can thank Turner for taking six years to get the Washington Redskins to the playoffs. As offensive coordinator for two Dallas Super Bowl teams last decade, expectations ran high. Ironically, Turner repeatedly fumbled offensively. Remember quarterbacks John Friesz and Heath Shuler? Gus Frerotte? Jeff Hostetler? Trent Green? Add Brad Johnson to the list. Turner must hold some kind of NFL record for doing the quarterback shuffle. Nonetheless, he has a future in football because there is interest from the NFL and college teams west of the Mississippi. Good luck to him and his family.
At this juncture, the Redskins are in the hands of Robiskie, the Redskins' passing game coordinator. One of Turner's first hires in 1994 and former offensive coordinator with the Oakland Raiders, Robiskie, 46, has a tough-love coaching style that works quite well with the Redskins' temperamental receivers. The transition, including that of quarterback Jeff George as starter should prove to be smooth even though victories might still be elusive. So, realistically, all fans can hope for is a 10-6 season. Gee, thanks, Coach Turner.

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