Redskins vs. Panthers and NFL Wrap Up

Cindy Boren
Washington Post NFL Editor
Monday, October 12, 2009; 12:00 PM

Post NFL Editor Cindy Boren was online Monday, Oct. 12 at 12:00 p.m. ET to take your questions about the Redskins' face off against the Panthers in Charlotte, the latest league injuries and all the breaking news in the NFL.

Read more: Full Coverage of the NFL.

Discuss the NFL: The League

A transcript follows.


Jim Zorn's Realtor: In this market, what is the best strategy to quickly sell a house at a reasonably fair price?

Cindy Boren: Greetings! Sorry we're a little late with the start today...I could throw someone under the bus, but it's getting pretty crowded there, so let's just roll. Mr. Realtor, do you know something the rest of us don't -- at least not as of 12:06 Oct. 12?


No one from Tampa, Fla.: Any chance Danny listens to Jimmy Johnson and "blows it and starts over"? Also, what are we looking at season wise 6-10 or 7-9?

Thank you to the wonderful Cindy-meister!

Cindy Boren: Hi, No one! I'm guessing that the owner does not listen to Jimmy Johnson, although perhaps he should because this ain't working. With the offensive line in disarray (word of the week), doesn't 6-10 look more likely? Especially with the juggernaut-y Cheeves up this week? (Hey, they almost won yesterday and an almost-win for them is a win in my KC-lovin' book.) Seriously, what if they lose to the Cheeves this weekend? Did you even think that would be a topic of discussion two weeks ago???


Bowie, Md.: A couple of weeks ago I broke my leg, and realized right away that my broken leg was the reason I was suddenly having trouble walking. I talked to a lot of different people who agreed with that assessment, and I decided that my number one priority, if I wanted to walk normally, was to go to the hospital and get my leg situation addressed.

But on the way to the hospital, I changed my mind and stopped at the Hair Cuttery to get a haircut instead. I figured I'd hope for the best when it came to my leg.

Seems like the Redskins front office took basically the same approach to the offensive line I took to my broken leg.

Cindy Boren: But your leg looked so good on the X-ray; who knew it would snap like a twig? I can't argue with you about the Redskins' approach. The team's internal evaluation showed that the offensive line was the reason for 2-6...and they went out and loaded up the defense.


Anonymous: So many Redskins fans want to get rid of the Boss. Can the NFL itself come to the rescue and compel owners to do a better job?

Cindy Boren: Springsteen? What's he got to do with it? Peer pressure hasn't really worked with Al Davis and the Raiders. And for years it didn't work with the Bidwills. So ... good luck.


Washington, D.C.: Boswell's column looks at Gibbs reign with rose-tinted frames, no? The offense was horrific under Gibbs too, hence the hiring of a quarterback's coach. The only saving grace was Gregg Williams, who also cast off defensive players as if it were his job and not Vinny's. The Skins have been a mess forever, and now the only legacy players are old lineman...not the best place to have old broken down players. Boz got it right though, Zorn has been completely outmatched. Thomas Boswell: Chaos Theory (Washington Post, Oct. 12)

Cindy Boren: If I recall correctly, a lineman said Gibbs 2.0 was an '80s offense and an OC with a 700-page playbook was brought in, so I think perhaps Mr. Boswell and I would disagree a bit on that. I'm with Boz the rest of the way, though. There was an odd little stat that the NFL put out about three weeks ago, saying the Redskins had the oldest roster in the league. At the time, it seemed merely interesting. It seems much more important now.


U.K. Redskin: Cindy - show us 'limeys' some love over the pond...

More to the point - a stretch play on your own 3 yard line to the right side of our offensive line, are you kidding me!?!? Gotta be an up the gut run, a quick slant or hey fool 'em all and hit Moss on a double move for the 97 yard TD ... but a stretch play, might as well just have Jason Campbell kneel down in the endzone.

P.S.: What has happened to the bull that was Mike Sellers, too?!

Cindy Boren: The stretch play was too much of a stretch, was it not? You have to run up the gut, even if you have a poor offensive line. Bring in the tight ends...anything. Mike Sellers is perplexing, but about 48th on the list of perplexing things about this team.


Tysons Corner, Va.: I admit to being perplexed that there are still some fans and even press folks talking about a respectable (around .500) season. We're 2-3 playing a creampuff schedule so far. 4-12 might be optimistic with all the turmoil in this organization. I guess people are having trouble getting past the star names on our roster to realize that we're not good (at all), and that we have become the white meat on every other team's schedule.

Cindy Boren: Perplex is the word of the day! I subscribe to the "anything can happen and sometimes does" theory. I do agree that 4-12 is a possibility, but maybe they get some teams with injuries and/or players resting late in the year and get to six or seven wins. It's a big "if," I know. Wow, that is depressing.


?: I am curious. How are Snyder's other businesses doing? Six Flags is bankrupt, Johnny Rockets isn't doing much better. Why are we surprised that he is running the Redskins into the ground?

Cindy Boren: Success or failure in other businesses doesn't necessary correlate to success or failure in football.

Just found out from Rick Maese (it's going onto the blog now) that Chris Samuels will not play Sunday.


Fair Weather: Start of the season, palyoffs definitely, superbowl, could be. Five weeks in, the doom is out in full force. What was different from last year, nothing. Haineworth, BUST, JC and this offense, BUST, Zorn, Coaching BUST. But Snyder is making some serious coin off this franchise....and putting out a substandard product. Although, I think Snyder truly wants to win, but something in his approach to this thing is not working.

Cindy Boren: You're right about this: Something in his approach is not working.


Guam: isn't Snyder's problem that no leading football people want to come and work for the likes of him?

Cindy Boren: I understand what you're saying, but there are only 32 head-coaching positions in the NFL. Someone with substantial talent and credentials would take the job. Might not be a first choice, but there are only 32 openings...and how many do you figure there'll be in January -- six? Someone will take the gig. Besides, in football, as in luv, you always think you'll be the one to change things.


Bethesda, Md.: You know when the offense wasn't horrific under Gibbs?

When Todd Collins came in.

Sonny Jurgenson said the team would be 4-0 going into yesterday's game if Todd was the starter. That he has never seen a QB see the field less than Jason Campbell.

Outside of yesterday, pass protection hasn't been a major problem. Other QBs are getting hit more -- a lot more -- and still finding open receivers.

JC's a nice guy, and it's clear the local media has been charmed by him... but there's a reason Gregg Williams told Snyder and Vinny he was a "coach killer" and that Collins would be his starter.

They should have listened.

Cindy Boren: You're right about one thing: pass protection has not been a major problem this year for Todd Collins! I'm not a JC fan, but you know how I feel about TC.


Calif.: The Chinese economy is growing fast and we've got huge unemployment. So why is it that Western economists always seem to win Nobel Prizes for economics, and no one from China wins?

Now you may wonder what this has to do with the Redskins. It relates because I foresee several unemployed coaches coming in the near future.

Cindy Boren: Will they be working in China?


Vinny Cerrato, Ashburn, Va.: How can people question my work? I only do what Dan wants. It's not my fault these players don't perform.

Cindy Boren: I believe some folks up here might beg to differ.


Boston: Has any other team erer played winless opponents (at game day) for the first six weeks of the season?

Cindy Boren: Came across this AP nugget last week: Redskins are first team to face a winless club in five straight weeks since 1954 New York Giants, according to STATS, Inc. No team has faced six straight winless teams, and Redskins play 0-5 Kansas City next.

So there.


Norfolk, Va.: Why aren't the Redskins seasons ticket holders staging unholy demonstrations against the owner? We're out here in TV land and can't wage war but you folks could make his life so miserable that he'd have to sell the team. The coaching staff, players and fans are victims of one person. Get him.

Cindy Boren: What say you, season-ticket holders?


Hampton, Va.: The way things are going now we won't even get a bye week because if they gave it to us we would loose it.

Cindy Boren: Bada-bing. It is impossible to lose the bye week. I just checked NFL rules. So there's that.


Why are we surprised that he is running the Redskins into the ground?: regardless of any of the businesses, Snyder is making a mint off the Redskins - the franchise is extremely valuable. Win or lose, you loons will still buy the jerseys, t-shirts, the 40 dollar beer and hotdog package.

Cindy Boren: "Loons" is such a harsh term. Please, civility. ($40 beer and hotdog package? That sounds pretty good.)


Houston: Thanks Cindy, for taking our questions and managing the RI Hamster Nation.

The reason some of us our unreasonably optimistic is this:

In 2007, the Redskins were 5-7 after the Buffalo loss. The season looked the same as it does now; uninspiring offense, adequete defense.

Sadly enough, the death of Sean Taylor provided the external motivation for a team effort over the last 4 games which allowed them to make the playoffs.

The losses to Detroit and Carolina were less about talent then team effort, from the coaches on down. The NFL is made up of 3 elites, 3 doormats and everyone else fighting in the middle.

This team COULD be fighting in the middle, if they did the basic things correctly.

Cindy Boren: That's more like it, Houston. My only fear is...what if the Redskins turn out to be one of those doormats, thanks to injuries and lack of depth?


Peer pressure hasn't really worked with Al Davis and the Raiders. : Yes, but Al Davis is a part of football legend. Hall of Fame owner and such.

Who in the blazes is Dan Snyder?

And why won't he just release the hostages (Redskins team/fans) and go away?

Maybe fans can host a going away party and invite him. Who knows? Maybe he'll get the hint!

Cindy Boren: Finally, someone sees my point about Al Davis! Daniel Snyder is the owner of one of the two most valuable franchises in the league, that's who he is.


Chris Cooley: Am I an OT now?

Cindy Boren: Ouch. Tough that Cooley didn't get a pass of some ilk yesterday. I mean, it's not like it would have been a stretch to get him the ball. It might have actually contributed to a drive and resulted in points or like such as.


Big Al: Cindy,

Why do I end up on the ground every game either temporarily hurt or on my knees on the sideline sucking wind?? I am rich don't forget. Phewww!! I just climbed up the stairs and need to sit down. Do you have any doughnuts?

Cindy Boren: Big Al, you are a terrific player. Unbelievably talented. But you've got to get into some sort of shape. You don't actually have to be "cut" to perform your job or do the shirtless-in-Central Park A-Rod photo shoot. Just do something for your own sake, your own health and post-career life. Remember how you rode the cart off the field with a towel over your head a few weeks ago? That was embarrassing. Something must be done.


Cupcakes: After all the early season talk about the easy schedule early in the season, it looks like the scheduling office has the last laugh, because the Redskins are the cupcake on everyone's menu for the rest of the season, possibly excluding the Raiders.

Yes, it's depressing.

Cindy Boren: Cupcakes are delicous. You don't really see the Redskins losing to the Cheeves, do you? Really?


Chicken little: Remember back in training camp when I was screaming about how the o-line was getting completely manhandled by the d-line? You all told me that the o-line takes time to jell, and besides, the d-line might truly be dominant anyway.

Well, where are we now?

Cindy Boren: Dear C. Little: You were right. If not falling, the sky certainly is really droopy.


Exasperated in Florida: It pains me to even type this but at this point, wouldn't a 3-13 type of season be the best medicine for this team? I think that only THAT would shake Lil Danny into reality that this thing needs to be 'blowed up'! Even he would have to admit failure at that point, right?

I'm going out to sip a Malibu and pineapple juice by the pool to soothe my Redskins pain.

Cindy Boren: Um, 3-13 would be more of a 911 call than a wake-up call, but, yeah, that certainly should do.


MsTeenSouthCarolina: I personally believe that I look like a freakin' genius, compared to the, uh, owner and, um GM, like such as.

Cindy Boren: Maps!


Reston, Va.: If according to Wise this is true

"has heard from several people close to the former Denver Broncos coach -Shanahan] who say that he has no interest in having Cerrato be the architect of his team."

Has Snyder finally done it, he's turned Washington into the NFL's version of Siberia, and now there is no chance for anyone to come save us regardless of the millions thrown?

Cindy Boren: I would be stunned if Shanahan would not want to run the personnel decisions. Not sure Washington is Siberia, though.


Houston: Thank goodness for the Raiders! At least for now, we have them as what we could become, but are not yet. I mean, hey, at least Jim Zorn hasn't threatened to kill Bugel, Blatche or Danny Smith. So we have that going for us.

And there seems to be a mixed opinion on Jason Campbell - whereas wow - I hope JaMarcus doesn't read any newspapers or surf the internet!

Cindy Boren: Thank goodness for the Raiders might be an effective marketing slogan.


O-line woes: With Samuels out, the Redskins have the worst o-line in the NFL. Defenses around the league will look forward to a game with Washington -- it is even better than a bye. You get to work on your schemes, pad your stats, and get a win.

Cindy Boren: Losing Samuels is a blow, but it's not hugely surprising. JReid wrote on the blog long ago that getting him through the season would take careful management (same with Randy Thomas). And yet here they are, without both.


Washington, D.C.: "You don't really see the Redskins losing to the Cheeves, do you? Really?"

Uh, yes, really. They played a whole lot better yesterday than the Skins did. At least they had the decency to go to OT

Cindy Boren: I will believe it when I see it. People keep trying to convince me about the Cheeves, but they must show me. (We Missourians are like that.)


Look on the bright side: Lots of good snark here today. We wouldn't be seeing that if the team was winning.

Cindy Boren: Cue the Monty Python song! Boo winning, which only leads to deconstruction and analysis and discussion of how far the team can do.


Todd Collins: Can you explain the hate for me beyond, "you know how i feel about todd collins." This has been the mantra for a year now even though when I play, we score points. When Jason plays, we don't.

Sure I'm old, but it's not like this is an up and coming team. The Redskins are perpetually in win now mode, and there is no way I don't give us the best chance to win.

Cindy Boren: I don't hate Toddball. He had a terrific run; he was the right guy in the right set of short-term circumstances. He is not the long-range, long-term answer. And, unless you're going to reincarnate the seven blocks of granite and sign 'em (can I watch?), he'd have to play behind this offensive line.


Washington, D.C.: re: Shanahan ... Do you know how many winners of the last 10 super bowls have had head coaches w/"total control". Give you a hint, it's 10x the number of catches 47 had yesterday. Please, please, please let the ownership not over steer and allow that to happen ...

Cindy Boren: You do raise a fair point. The best organizations have both.


Al Davis: Please refrain from slandering my team by calling yourselves "The Raiders of the East."

The correct terminology is me calling my team "The Redskins of the West."

Cindy Boren: Thanks, Al. Keep rocking the pantsuits.


Crofton, Md.: Cindy,

Is the Psychiatrist in? You should charge DOUBLE today!!

Ha ha!

Cindy Boren: Shrinks get Columbus Day off? Boy, did I err on career day.


Oakland: You know, they might be putting up "Thank goodness for the Redskins" signs at the Coliseum come week 14. (And serving cupcakes along with the Everett and Jones BBQ.)

Cindy Boren: There are an awfully lot of Oaklanders ... Oaklandites ... members of Raider Nation up here today.


Cheeves: Yes, K.C. will beat the Redskins on Sunday. They came awfully close against another dysfunctional NFC East team yesterday, and they might not want to wait until they play the Raiders before they get their first win. The Redskins are already the cupcake.

Cindy Boren: Will FedEx be fed up?


Baltimore: Good for Jon Jansen. What does it say about the Redskins that someone is happy to play for the Lions?

Cindy Boren: That perhaps it's more a matter of going home than of being with the Lions?


Cooley and Davis: Does using Cooley as a blocker instead of Davis mean that Davis is not really a tight end yet?

It seems like somebody else should have blocked and have Cooley still be a receiver.

It is not a good offense when you only have Santana Moss and Randle-El as pass catchers.

Cindy Boren: I would agree with that.


Wow: Plan for next week is to have the undrafted free agent who might not be an NFL player (let alone a starter) protecting the blind side. The right side will be protected by the biggest loser and this week's "why I want to be an NFL player" essay contest winner.

If Campbell gets hurt, can he sue the organization for negligence?

Cindy Boren: I truly hope no one gets hurt, but that would be an interesting court case.


Anonymous: Novi, Michigan

Hi Cindy. Depressing day in the Washington area, I guess, is an understatement. I'm from there originally and am suffering with all the diehards. I would like your honest, heart-felt opinion on one thing. Which of the big name available coaches would ever come here with Vinnie Cerrato running the football operation? I don't see any of them coming here and combining their talents with his total incompetence in running a professional football franchise, not to mention the owner's meddlesome ways and toxic management style. And if one of those would succomb to Danny, with the stipulation that Vinny be fired as a prerequisite to thier hiring, do you think Mr. Snyder would do so? I don't. Tell me I'm wrong. Thanks.

Cindy Boren: Hello, there. Going forward, that's certainly going to be a big issue. It's the million-dollar question. The really big names want control. The owner has some tough decisions ahead.


Washington, D.C.: In a world of perfect karma, Danny would order Vinny to play right tackle.

Cindy Boren: Thanks!


Miami: How about Gibbs as President of the Redskins?

Cindy Boren: Maybe that's what Snyder and Gibbs were discussing over dinner last weekend.


Annapolis, Md.: So, Cindy, on Toddball ...are you saying you know better than Jurgy?

Cindy Boren: I knew someone was going to call me on that. Mr. Jurgy and I disagree...maybe he was just trying to be provocative? Nah. He's gotta be right.


Suggestion for the offense: Given the events of the last week, wouldn't Portis run faster with Sellers chasing him instead of blocking for him?

Cindy Boren: That would be entertaining if not productive.


Rockville, Md.: " The best organizations have both." This organization has neither-- no qualified GM or Coach.

Cindy Boren: Thanks.


The Washington "Professional" Football Franchise: We blame the media. Get off our backs. It's all your fault. You're so negative. Don't be mean to us and we'll play better.

Cindy Boren: But ... but ... we don't block. We don't score. We don't defend. We just ask questions and scribble. Truly.


Baltimore: Cindy,

What is your take on the Shanahan rumours?

Cindy Boren: I think anything and everything is possible. We try not to assess rumours, just to find out as much as we can and report from there. At this point, we follow 'em all and see where they lead.


Tuckahoe, N.Y.: What does the league office think of a reviled ownership that also cannot win?

Cindy Boren: I believe that, if you were to ask the league "office," it would tell you that it knows that no Redskins fan wants to see this team win more than Daniel Snyder does.


Brooklyn, N.Y.: 6-10? Your man Jason Reid said in his chat on Friday that he'd be surprised if they won another game all year. Thoughts?

Cindy Boren: I understand where JReid (My guy! I've always wanted to say that! JReid says it all the time; I never get to.) is coming from and he may well be right. I really don't see the Cheeves winning; by Jan. 3, who knows what shape San Diego will be in (maybe resting everybody?); and Oakland??? The Raiders are dreadful. So there are three winnable ones right there. Of course, that doesn't mean the Redskins will win, but those are winnable -- or are at least a toss-up. Hmmm....that's 5-11, isn't it?

On that note, I must head for the Redskins Insider blog and twitter. As always, thanks for joining me up here on a holiday and all. See you next week!


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