- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 27, 2001

A growing rift is threatening to turn the "one voice" policy of the Washington Redskins into a shouting match.
Team sources yesterday said owner Dan Snyder is eager to resume daily management after a one-season hiatus and decrease coach Marty Schottenheimer's overall control. Schottenheimer confirmed Snyder has the power to hire a player personnel director despite repeated statements by both the owner and coach that the latter has total authority. Schottenheimer fired former player personnel director Vinny Cerrato in January and hired successor John Schneider.
Schottenheimer deferred discussing his reaction to the possible hiring of a player personnel director until the offseason. Washington (6-8) is eliminated from the playoffs with two games remaining, New Orleans on Sunday and Arizona Jan.6.
"We'll talk about this after the season," he said. "I've enjoyed coaching this year. I've been frustrated and disappointed, certainly."
Snyder inquired about former Green Bay general manager Ron Wolf, who's now retired in Annapolis. However, NFL sources said Wolf isn't interested in returning to the NFL. Snyder may consider a middle-level NFL official who permits the owner to have steady input much like Cerrato.
A player personnel director would likely have comparable power to Schottenheimer. However, Schottenheimer has final say on the roster so any personnel moves would need his approval or be rendered pointless during preseason cutdowns.
Snyder and minority owner Fred Drasner have been considering changes since the team's 0-5 start. NFL sources said Snyder inquired about Florida coach Steve Spurrier's availability in October before signing Schottenheimer. Spurrier declined to discuss the job with the Redskins, especially since his contract only provides a narrow window in January to leave the Gators.
Snyder scouted college quarterbacks himself, in case the team drafted early in the first round. However, the subsequent 5-0 streak checked further possibilities until the recent 1-3 slide ended the Redskins' playoff hopes.
Schottenheimer is expected to remain coach despite the disappointing season that was buoyed by preseason talk of possible Super Bowl contention by the coach and owner. Schottenheimer has firmly said "I have a job" with no plans to resign should the team finish 6-10.
After all, Schottenheimer is nearing the end of the first of a four-year, $10million deal. There are no option clauses so dismissing Schottenheimer would cost Snyder another $7.5 million plus several million dollars should assistant coaches also be fired as part of a purge.
Meanwhile, Schottenheimer may still make changes to his staff, according to team sources. Schottenheimer won't consider any moves until after the season and said he has "no intention" of changes. However, team sources said a showdown with Snyder over offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye is expected.
Snyder forced Norv Turner to fire defensive coordinator Mike Nolan in 1999 with the owner hiring Ray Rhodes without the coach's endorsement.
The Redskins offense is ranked 27th overall and 30th in red-zone offense and passing. The modified West Coast offense has scored 196 points despite losing only tight end Stephen Alexander to injury. The Redskins are on pace to score their fewest points (224) since the NFL moved to a 16-game schedule in 1978. Washington scored 230 in 1993 and finished 4-12. Conversely, the Redskins scored 443 points in 1999 while winning the NFC East.

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