When the Redskins were NFC East champs, there seemed to be a lot less discussion of Dan Snyder by national talking heads.
Now they’re bad again — below .500 as December begins for the 11th time in the past 12 seasons, as ESPN’s John Keim noted. And so now there’s more discussion of Dan Snyder, especially with Mike Shanahan’s future yet to be determined.
Tony Dungy brought up ownership yet again this week, when he was discussing the perils of being Robert Griffin III on Dan Patrick’s radio show.
“I think the whole thing gets kind of exacerbated in Washington, with the whole setup there, the way it’s been, the owner and everything, and the press,” Dungy said. “RGIII’s gonna be okay, just like Cam Newton. Now in three or four years, he matures, he’s playing great football, maybe he’s matured a little bit, but they’re winning more, he’s playing better, so now it all looks pretty good. Whereas when you’re not winning, everything seems to be a negative.”
“You think Mike Shanahan will survive?” Patrick asked.
“That hasn’t been the history in Washington,” Dungy said. “Coaches haven’t lasted a long time there. I think it would be best for them in the long run to stay with this offense and keep building and keep some continuity. I’m not sure it’s going to happen.”
“Would you want to work for him? For Daniel Snyder?” Patrick asked.
“No, no,” Dungy said. “When you’re interviewing coaches for the job, and you haven’t told me I’ve lost the job yet? No, I would NOT want to work for him.”
(I assume this was a reference to Snyder courting Mike Shanahan early in Jim Zorn’s final season.)
“If I said you could work for Daniel Snyder, or Jerry Jones, or not work at all….” Patrick tried.
“Let’s just say I’m retired from the NFL,” Dungy said.
“So you would rather not work than to work under those two guys?” Patrick tried again.
“No, I think I could work for anybody,” Dungy said. “When you work for Dan Rooney, you work for Lamar Hunt, you work for Jim Irsay, even the Glazers were great to me and let me pass or fail based on my ability. I think that’s what you’re looking for as a head coach, and I don’t know that you get that in Washington or Dallas. The problem I have with both those organizations: You’ve got to build a team; that’s how you win championships. You can’t just say we’re gonna bring in the best player, we’re gonna bring in guys, it doesn’t matter what kind of teammates they are or what type of history they have, if we get star players we’re gonna be good. And I think both of those owners think that’s the case: The more star players you have, the better you’re gonna be. And that’s not how you build championship teams.”
To be honest, that last paragraph reads a little funny. If anything, this current Redskins team would appear to have a dramatic dearth of star players, minus one, I guess. But I bet Dungy won’t be the only one focusing on the owner’s box over the next few weeks.