The Washington Redskins: They're in the news today, oh boy

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By Dan Steinberg
Thursday, May 27, 2010

Shortly before Dan Snyder told reporters Tuesday that he wanted to bring the Super Bowl to D.C., we were nearing a magical sort of milestone.

The Redskins had gone four straight days without making any real news. It was only the second time they had made it that long this offseason. The offseason record -- a six-day period in late February -- seemed to be in doubt. You could even imagine the possibility of a full week in which to focus on Stephen Strasburg's debut.

But then Snyder said his piece about a Super Bowl. And then Albert Haynesworth got hit with a $10 million paternity lawsuit. And then Mike Shanahan said he didn't think Santana Moss would be suspended for alleged performance-enhancing drug improprieties. And so the "no-news" clock reset to zero.

In fact, the Redskins have treated the "off" from "offseason" like a no-show defensive lineman with a bad attitude. On Jan. 3, they lost to the Chargers to finish a 4-12 season, which is the part of the year when they actually play football. On Jan. 4, they fired Jim Zorn. And since then, the news has gushed out from Ashburn with all the inconspicuousness of Haynesworth in a preschool talent show.

Sometimes, the news has been refreshing and cleansing. Sometimes, it's been muddy and defiling. Usually, it's involved the word "Haynesworth." But either way, the Redskins have kept the D.C. Divas off the front of this newspaper.

I went back to see just how many days the team made actual news. Saying provocative things doesn't count. Saying the words "Albert Haynesworth" might or might not count. Saying you'd like to bring a Super Bowl to D.C. absolutely counts. Words can be news, and yes, this can be subjective. There have been 143 days in this offseason, including Wednesday. According to my review, there have been legitimate Redskins news stories on 83 of those days.

There have been arrests and signings, firings and hirings (the latter coming on at least 11 different days), Hall of Fame elections and retirements, and 1,733 Haynesworth updates.

Some of the stories have involved the brightest headliners in football: visits from Tim Tebow and Sam Bradford, a trade for Donovan McNabb, the hiring of Shanahan. Some of the stories have involved people I'd never heard of, people named Jon Embree and Sean McVay and Richmond Flowers.

The team has signed fistfuls of defensive linemen, all on different days: Howard Green and Anthony Bryant, Greg Peterson and Darrion Scott. They've signed high-profile skill guys such as Willie Parker, Larry Johnson and Joey Galloway. They've signed obscure specialists such as Justin Medlock and Nick Sundberg.

They've explored various nooks of the legal system: Chad Rinehart was arrested for public intoxication and Byron Westbrook for drunk driving, while Moss was caught up in an HGH investigation. They've announced a freeze on ticket prices, the creation of new HD video boards and a new management structure for their retail stores. They've announced their preseason schedule and their regular season schedule.

They've held conditioning workouts that weren't attended by Haynesworth, organized team activities that weren't attended by Haynesworth, and minicamps that weren't attended by Haynesworth. They've talked about how they weren't going to trade Haynesworth, how they were disappointed in Haynesworth, and how they didn't want to talk about him.

And you know the best part? There's still two months before training camp.


© 2010 The Washington Post Company

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