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Under Snyder, Redskins Play Their Own Brand of Money Ball

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By Mike Wise
Saturday, February 28, 2009

Envisioning Daniel Snyder scheming over how he would lure Albert Haynesworth to Washington with all that cash brings to mind, bizarre as this might sound, an old "Austin Powers" clip. Remember the character who leered diabolically into the camera, his pinkie perched near his pursed lips as he named his price for not destroying civilization?

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"One-hundred billion dollars. Mooo-hahaha. Mooo-hahaha."

Mini-Me, of course, will be played by Vinny Cerrato.

So much for that Senior Bowl find, huh? So much for the stated "plan," that new, fiscally sound, build-through-the-draft mantra the Washington Redskins tried to foist upon their fan base.

In the end, Snyder couldn't break the pattern of an addictive past. So he went to back to what he knows: checkbook athleticism.

He couldn't withstand that craving -- really, that insatiable need -- to wave money in order to procure someone else's star. It has such a strong pull on him.

To smell the fuel as it pours into his private jet, warming on the tarmac in preparation for another trip to court another talented veteran with baggage.

To savor the priciest pinot noir and the most succulent dead cow at the best steakhouse in town.

Which is why it's back to Danny Ball, baby.

Impulse buys. Record-setting spending. Not a blueprint for constructing a team as much as a state of mind, where the patience to rebuild has no shot against the ongoing fantasy to reload.

From the man who bought you Neion Deion, Bruce Smith, Jeff George and the NFL's first $100 million team nearly a decade ago comes pro football's first $100 million defensive player.

As history under Snyder goes, doesn't this make perfect financial sense for Washington?


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