Mike Shanahan and Washington Redskins must face need to rebuild

The Washington Redskins hopes for the playoffs evaporate as they are crushed by the New York Giants.
By Mike Wise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, December 5, 2010; 9:11 PM


At least the pretense is gone, the facade of competing for something meaningful ruthlessly peeled away like the football was six times from Redskins players on Sunday afternoon - the day the Washington Redskins' season was buried beneath this cold, dank plot of land hard off the New Jersey Turnpike.

R.I.P., Hope. See ya, Renewal. As usual, we hardly knew ye.

Born Jan. 5, 2010, after the hiring of Mike Shanahan, bolstered in April by the blockbuster trade for Donovan McNabb, they expired for Washington's once-again woeful NFL team in the south end zone, snuffed out in the middle of the third quarter, in the swirling winds of New Meadowlands Stadium after the fourth unanswered touchdown seemed to bring back that familiar phrase:

Wait, what day is the NFL draft?

They're playing for future employment now.

Goodbye, postseason.

Hello, job security.

Adios, hopefully, to "We can win now" spin.

Hola to harsh truth, to "back up the truck."

Today is the day Mike Shanahan needs to stop pretending and start rebuilding in earnest, the day the architect of this franchise's future needs to be spare and fussy with his words, to cut the charade and say what he feels.

For instance:

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