- - Tuesday, January 22, 2019

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Who would want to coach the Washington Redskins?

When that question is raised by reasonable people, the fallback response invariably is: “Well, there are only 32 of these jobs in the NFL.”

Stop it.

The reality is that there are only 31 of these jobs in the NFL — and then there is the Redskins job. It stands alone in the league, with more baggage than a Diana Ross tour.

Let’s do a word association game. When I say Redskins head coach, what one word comes to your mind? Dysfunction? Poisonous? Debilitating? Destructive?

Go ahead, I’m willing to entertain the positive words associated with the job.

Money? It’s gotten so bad at Redskins Park that a fat paycheck doesn’t even seem like it is enough to convince those in the coaching profession to suffer through turmoil that is like no other in the league.

Yes, there are other bad coaching jobs in the NFL, jobs that have been bad for a long time. But there may be no other job that has more vicious internal politics or more incompetency, poison and pain than the Redskins job.

Working for owner Dan Snyder and his imaginary friend, team president Bruce Allen, is not a sales pitch.

The latest revelations out of Ashburn — this week’s report by CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora about the team’s futile efforts to try to replace beleaguered defensive coordinator Greg Manusky — are more evidence of how broken the franchise is.

La Canfora, who knows the Redskins well from covering the team for several years with the Washington Post, reported that it was Snyder — not head coach Jay Gruden — who led the pursuit for Manusky’s replacement, even while Manusky was still in the building in his job.

“Washington owner Dan Snyder aggressively pursued former NFL head coaches Todd Bowles and Gregg Williams to run his defense in recent weeks, despite having yet to fire defensive coordinator Greg Manusky, with the scope of his pursuit potentially not portending well for coach Jay Gruden in 2020,” La Canfora reported.

“Snyder flew Bowles, an accomplished former safety with the team who was recently fired as the Jets head coach, to the Washington team facility and made a concerted attempt to convince him to take over the team’s defense,” La Canfora reported. “The owner made it clear he would compensate Bowles as well as any coordinator in the NFL and was also willing to alter his personnel structure within football operations if Bowles was interested

“As one source with knowledge of the situation put it, ‘Dan put the full-court press on (Bowles). He didn’t want to let him leave. He wanted to know what conditions it would take to get him to stay. If Todd had said, ‘I’ll only do it if I am the head coach,’ I think he may have gone for it.’”

Let us stop here for a minute for some cleanup on aisle three — if you have ever parroted the Pravda party line that Snyder no longer meddles in the football operation as he has so many times in the past, the fairy tale that Snyder has somehow matured — you have lost your credibility privileges.

And another housekeeping item — one Loverro rule is that if things look bad from the outside, the reality is that behind closed doors, they are much, much worse.

Sometimes there is an exception to that rule.

But the Redskins ARE the rule.

What we hear publicly and see with our own eyes is disturbing enough. Imagine how bad things are inside the building.

The list of evidence is long and familiar, but, for brevity sake, let’s just stick to the Manusky mess. Various reports are that they pursued Bowles, Williams and fired Arizona head coach Steve Wilks to consider taking Manusky’s job — again, even though technically there was no vacancy to fill.

It’s the typical low road for the Redskins, but one they felt they were reduced to because of the fear that they would wind up in another Manusky situation again — unable to find someone they wanted to come work for the franchise.

Manusky has the job because, after firing defensive coordinator Joe Barry in January 2017, the organization couldn’t find anyone else it wanted to hire. The Redskins were left with promoting Manusky, the outside linebackers coach, to defensive coordinator. They had to hire the guy left in the room.

To avoid a repeat, it seems, Snyder put himself in charge of hiring the defensive coordinator.

The story being pushed out of Redskins Park is that the organization was simply looking to pick the brains of these coaches for “different perspectives.” according to the Washington Post.

That may be true. God knows there is a shortage of brains at Redskins Park

Hear Thom Loverro on 106.7 The Fan Wednesday afternoons and Saturday and Sunday mornings and on the Kevin Sheehan Show podcast every Tuesday and Thursday.

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