The field looked dreadful on TV (it was the first thing Joe Buck and Troy Aikman mentioned at the opening of the telecast), and a lot of players from both teams limped to the sidelines during the game. Some returned; others didn’t. It has looked increasingly bad over the final home games of the regular season, but never as barren as it looked Sunday. There is no excuse for this; Landover is not Green Bay. Dan Snyder has been willing to spend a lot of money on FedEx Field; it’s time to spend a lot of money on the field at FedEx.
“It’s not a perfect field, we know that,” Shanahan said Monday, adding that he is not opposed to artificial turf and that the field is something the team will look at in the offseason. “. . . I thought the field was okay because I didn’t see guys slipping. But you would like to have the perfect field, yes.”
Snyder has spent money for the best orthopedist money can buy. So are the Redskins listening to him? Depends whom you ask. Shanahan tried Monday to clear up the confusion about what Andrews said and when, and as usual, the waters are merely muddier. Too bad, because Andrews is the perfect answer to the conundrum the Redskins faced Sunday. When an injured player wants to get back on the field and a coach wants to believe he’s healthy enough, someone has to be King Solomon. Andrews seems suited for the part.
Sports does not embrace caution, nor does it celebrate a “me-first” attitude. Think of every canned sports quote you’ve ever heard, from “leaving it all on the field” to “giving 110 percent.” What is cliché to us is gospel to athletes — they really believe this stuff. It’s asking a lot for one of them to change that attitude in the middle of his first playoff game.
That’s why the decision needs to be made by someone, if you’ll pardon another cliché, with no dog in the hunt. Andrews is paid by the Redskins but not beholden to them. If he’s fired today, every other NFL team in the country will try to hire him. Plus he has a healthy little practice down South; he’ll be fine.
Griffin, however, may not be. And until there is some hierarchy and cohesion in making decisions about injuries, during and between games, the Redskins may not be fine, either.
For previous columns by Tracee Hamilton, visit washingtonpost.