The Redskins, who have many questions on offense, must develop a better system of checks and balances. They can’t begin another season ill-equipped at quarterback because of Shanahan’s confidence in his coaching ability. Washington needs Allen to stand up to Shanahan. In the Redskins’ organization, there’s no one else to do it.
Allen may need Snyder’s help in persuading Shanahan to try something new. Fortunately for Allen, he has Snyder’s ear, Redskins people say.
Allen is savvy. He’s a shrewd, tough executive. He knows all the angles and is always focused on the big picture.
Because of his family ties to the franchise, Allen was eager to take part in attempting to restore the Redskins. He understood Shanahan would have the upper hand in the Redskins’ non-traditional GM-coach dynamic.
Still, Allen has played a key role in the football operation, especially from a budget planning perspective. Allen also is active in the Redskins’ community efforts. He has worked hard to improve ties with the team’s alumni.
Allen’s accomplishments, though, won’t matter much unless the Redskins get back to winning. He knows that. He’s too smart to think otherwise.
Player-personnel isn’t Allen’s area, NFL people say. Many of the moves Allen made while running the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were roundly criticized.
The Redskins, however, don’t need Allen to project whether an 18-year-old college guard will become another Russ Grimm. He doesn’t have to be a guru.
He just has to push back when Shanahan is charging too hard. He has to call for substantive discussion before Shanahan declares only one voice is necessary. Allen must prevent another Rex-Beck fiasco from happening again.
The Redskins are in good shape with their salary cap, mostly because of Allen and Eric Schaffer, the club’s talented vice president of football administration. Morocco Brown, director of pro personnel, is one of the league’s top young talent evaluators. He could run his own shop someday.
Based, in part, on front-office recommendations, Shanahan selected impressive outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan with the first pick in the April draft. During free agency, Shanahan approved the signings of defensive end Stephen Bowen and nose tackle Barry Cofield, who have bolstered Washington’s 3-4 attack.
Shanahan has made some good moves. He’ll soon have another opportunity to pick a quarterback. Allen should make sure he doesn’t do it alone.