Cerrato: Bengals better without Gruden


(Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

Every time I publish anything about Vinny Cerrato, I invariably receive a certain type of feedback. It goes like this: Why would you publish the musings of a man universally credited with torpedoing Washington’s roster during his years in the front office? Why would you confer credibility upon a man loathed by most local fans? Why would you think that any of your readers care what Cerrato thinks about the Redskins, or about the NFL, or about the price of Pecorino in a Tuscan market? And don’t you possibly have anything better to do with your time?

I dunno. Guess not.

Anyhow, Cerrato was on SiriusXM NFL Radio with Howard David over the weekend, and was asked how he thought Jay Gruden would fare in Washington.

“Well I say this, I think Cincinnati got better,” Cerrato began. “And here’s why I say that: I think Hue Jackson will run the ball, and …”

At this point David interrupted Cerrato, pointing out that he was asking about Jay Gruden, Washington Redskins head coach.

“I was talking about Washington and what you expect out of Jay Gruden,” David noted.

“Right,” Cerrato agreed. “And that’s why I was saying, I think Cincinnati got better by him leaving. Just look at one play against the Ravens last year. They had the Ravens on the ropes, ready to quit. They run the ball down to the 1, he throws an interception, they continue the game. See, I think what they’ll do now in Cincinnati is [offensive coordinator] Hue Jackson will run the football a lot more than Jay Gruden. I think there’ll be more balance.

“Now, in Washington, I don’t know how he’ll be,” Cerrato said, getting to the Redskins. “You know, he’s got to commit to the run game, too, Jay Gruden.  So it’s going to be interesting to see. I mean, it’s his first chance. I’ll be anxious to see it. Because let me say this: Mike Shanahan’s a great football coach. I’ve worked with Mike. I know what he can do. So it’s going to be interesting to see what Gruden can do.”

Wait, I just thought of a reason to do this: Because if Cerrato thinks the Bengals will be better off without Gruden, many Redskins fans will feel a whole lot better about him running their team.

Also, if you wanted to be struck dead from irony like a caterpillar being body-slammed by Albert Haynesworth, Cerrato talked about some teams being stuck in salary cap jail.

“There’s certain teams — Dallas, New Orleans, and some of those — that have no cap room,” Cerrato noted. “That’s gonna make it very difficult for them to do anything. That’s why you see them restructuring, getting rid of players. They’re doing a credit-card mentality in Dallas. It’s going to catch up to them eventually. I’ve been through that.”

Sounds yucky.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things DC sports at the DC Sports Bog.
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Dan Steinberg | March 10