First Things First -- Tracee Hamilton on the latest sports news

Network News

X Profile
View More Activity
Tracee Hamilton
Friday, November 5, 2010; 9:30 AM

_______________________

Best for everyone?: Tracee, Do you think the McNabb benching could end up being the best thing for everyone in the long run? I mean, we all did question the Albert Haynesworth situation and how it was handled, and it seems maybe coach did know best after all (of course still early on that verdict, but positive signs were showing). Fact is, any QB not named McNabb, Manning or Brady really should have been benched after that performance on Sunday. Granted, there was no way Grossman was leading us to victory, but still, maybe this will put a chip on McNabb's shoulder, and if it doesn't, does that not prove out he is not the man to lead this team long-term?CP from CA

Tracee Hamilton: It is possible, yes, I think so. That's why I'm not ready to say the relationship is over. Like any good marriage, it's a lot of work. Which may be why I'm single. :)And good morning, everyone! Let's get right to it.

_______________________

RIP Sparky: Correct me if I'm wrong, but weren't you at the Freep when Sparky Anderson, who passed away yesterday, managed Detroit? Wilbon, on PTI, mentioned that Sparky was a great, great storyteller. Do you have any good Sparky Anderson stories?"Section 405"

Tracee Hamilton: I certainly was. When I was young, I was a huge fan of the Big Red Machine -- I think we've discussed this before -- and when I moved to Detroit in 1983, there was Sparky and a really fun bunch of guys and Ernie calling the games. I instantly became hooked on the Tigers, and I mean in about one day. And the next year, we all know what happened.I never knew Sparky personally, the way I knew Ernie. The only athletes and coaches I knew were some of the Pistons, from covering them briefly. (Chuck Daly, also gone. Sigh.) One year for our baseball special section we put Sparky and Ernie on the cover and later a friend got both of them to sign it. It's framed in my Sports Basement Lair and I'm looking at it this morning. Both gone.I guess I did meet Sparky once, when we had him as our special section cover (I was always in charge of the baseball special sections). In the shot we surrounded him with sparklers (he was kneeling) and lit them all at once. So in the photo he's smiling but between his teeth he's grunting "Take the damn photo, Mary! Hurry up!" (Mary was our photog and Sparky loved her; wouldn't have done it for anyone else. She also took the famous Gibby shot from the World Series; she kept that negative in a safety deposit box for years.)Sorry, I ran on there a little bit. Oh, when I left the Freep, Sparky signed a bat for me and then all the staff signed it too. It's in the SBL as well.

_______________________

Restaurants: Tequila Grande, huh? I've driven past it a million times on my way to Anita's up the street. Should I stop one of these days? (It's really tough finding good Mexican in this city!!)

Tracee Hamilton: I understood Anita's closed. There is a new place there on Maple but I haven't tried it. I'm no great judge of food but I love the folks there and they are good to me, so I keep going. They have a grilled burrito that I loved (before the GF experiment). I'm now hooked on the talapia. Stop in sometime. If you see me, say hi.

_______________________

Redskins- Free Agents: Hi Tracee-We heard during the bye week that the Redskins brought in 20 or so players for a look, most notably Russell and Losman at the QB position. Were they impressed with any of the workouts, and do you see any potential signings over the next week?Brian- Richmond, VA

Tracee Hamilton: Shockingly, they haven't revealed their thoughts about that. :) Seriously, I have no idea; they really are the most secretive bunch. We'll have to wait to find out next week, I'm afraid.

_______________________

Campbell vs McNabb: When Campbell was with the Redskins, most put most of the blame on him rather than on the OL and the WRs. Now, when McNabb has problems, it is the OL and the WRs. Do you find this fair and just what did we gain by dealing Campbell who has had 3 games with QB ratings over 100--as high as 127--with the Raiders and their offense after now being in about his 5th or so different scheme where McNabb doesn't seem able even to handle one change?

Tracee Hamilton: couldn't get himself out of trouble as well as McNabb sometimes can. Campbell held on to the ball too long. McNabb was doing a bit of that Sunday against the Lions; earlier in the season he was much better at getting rid of it or taking off.I don't know how complex the Raiders' offense is but Campbell is a bright guy. The Redskins' offense, by all accounts, is incredibly complicated, so I don't think it's fair to call it "one change" for McNabb. The entire season has been a huge change for him.(And I'll say it once again; I'm happy for Campbell.)

_______________________

Good Column Today: Tracee: good column today, kinda placed everything in perspective. Thanks!Are you anticipating McNabb getting this under control in the second half, so that he gets extended? Or are you thinking that he's likely to fail, given the O-Line and receiver corps he's working with? What's your prediction?

Tracee Hamilton: Oh, so tough to say, so many variables. I still think they can finish 8-8. At the end, will Shanahan be satisfied that McNabb is his guy? I think it's about 60-40 right now.

_______________________

Comment, Just: Not a question. Just want to thank you for the rational column you posted in this morning's Post. Also, love the metaphors. Do you have a metaphor dictionary? Great stuff.

Tracee Hamilton: Your compliment is like ... like ... I have no good metaphor. So I'll just say thanks! :)

_______________________

Bryce Harper: Tracee, I haven't seen anything more on Bryce Harper and his progress in the AFL. Sorry for the change of subject.

Tracee Hamilton: DC Sports Report is on it, and it looks good. I think our own Mr. Kilgore is on a well-earned vacation at the moment.

_______________________

Annapolis: Tracee you may be single but you're every guy's dream ... smart, pretty and can talk sports while actually CARING about sports!

Tracee Hamilton: Mom? I didn't think you could even FIND the chat!

_______________________

McNabb on a short leash? Not really.: The problem with Shanahan letting Donovon think that he's on a short leash is that Rex Grossman is the back up. Now if, say. . .Michael Vick was the back up, then maybe it would be a credible threat.

Tracee Hamilton: Yes, and this was the essential problem with benching him. I'd rather see old Joe Montana in his Shape-Ups come in that Rex Grossman. I am just not convinced that the ability to memorize a lot of complicated play names translates into winning a football game. But I can't shoot lasers out of my eyes, either.

_______________________

Sports Doldrums: I'm sort of down in the dumps sports wise this week. Despite early flashes of competency and an unsettled NFC East, it looks clear now that the Redskins will not be competitive (again) this year. The Nats were done ages ago and now the MLB postseason is over. I'm not really a basketball or College football fan and the Caps taught us last season that the regular season is meaningless and there's not point in getting excited until they actually win a playoff series. I enjoy non-Redskins football on Thanksgiving and there's always March Madness and Spring Training to look forward to. . .five. . .months. . .away. Ugh.

Tracee Hamilton: You need a hobby. Or get an early start on holiday decorations?

_______________________

Mcnabb/Shanhan: Hello Tracee, What were the realistic expectations for the Redskins this season, I mean they are learning a new offensive scheme which lacks adequate personnel and a horrendous offensive line? I think the way Shanahan has handled this drama is his fault. In this instance the unspoken word is that the players are fully behind McNabb as they should be. Nothing against Grossman but I can guarantee this ,if he has to play our season is over whether he knows the scheme or not, finally Shanahan likes to call players out when is going to call out the offensive line?

Tracee Hamilton: The realistic expectations this season were 7-9 or 8-8, so they are on track to be able to do that. IF they had been able to win against St. Louis and Detroit, say, they might have been able to rattle some cages in the NFC East (and still might, given the strangeness of the division), so in that way it may end up being a missed opportunity, but they were never Super Bowl bound, that is true.Shanahan has been fairly silent about the line, and Donovan defends them, just as Campbell did before him and just as a quarterback has to. I'm afraid this is as good as the line is going to get, except I sure would put Dockery back in there to see what would happen. But the line isn't all that good yet -- improved, but still -- and I'm not sure calling them out will do any good.

_______________________

Clayton from ESPN: John Clayton just wrote the Skins would be interested in signing Vick during the off-season. Have you heard this or is there any truth to it?

Tracee Hamilton: Haven't heard it. It was rumored, when, last season or the season before? I suppose stranger things have happened. Good gravy.

_______________________

Kevin Garnett/Charlie Villanueva: I know this happened a few days ago but I wanted to see what your take is. How is is it any better to go from being called a "cancer patient," to being called "cancerous to your team and our league?" I can see how trash talking may be used to a player's advantage but isn't that crossing the line (either quote)? It seems that KG is trying to make up for his declining game by distracting his opponents with off-the-wall comments like that. What is your opinion of trash talking, I think it is a waste of time and energy myself.

Tracee Hamilton: I'm a-gin' it, at least to this degree. I'm a Celtics fan, I'll say that right up front. But either statement is really bad trash talk. I can't imagine saying "You're cancerous to your team and our league" to someone in the heat of battle. Doesn't even seem natural. "You're a rogue and a villain and I will smite thee!" Not a fan of the genre in general but I sure wouldn't veer into cancer territory, whether intentionally or not.

_______________________

Va. Tech: Can I say I hate Virginia Tech (I'm not a Ga. Tech fan, btw)? They lose to Boise State, and then spend so long pouting about it the next week they $%&# up and lose to James Madison to become a joke. But now they decide to turn on their talent and just run roughshod over the ACC yet again? And now they're going to win the ACC title, as nationally people make jokes like "Should JMU be given the ACC championship." Va. Tech was supposed to be one of the teams that brought legitimacy to the ACC, yet all they do is falter out of conference, and just out-talent all the teams in the conference to win the title every year and get embarrassed in the BCS bowl they go to. If they're going to do that, at least let us little guys (ahem, UMD) win the title every once in awhile.

Tracee Hamilton: The Tech fans will be unhappy with the ACC title, once again, which should further enrage the Maryland fans.I just want to know, how the heck did my team beat Ga. Tech?

_______________________

OnTheFenceWithFootball: It's getting harder to watch football anymore if these prima-donna, million dollar players start to rule the game. A coach should have the ability to sub any player - no matter what! It's not about the game anymore but rather it's about the players - as this controversy of removing the first string quarterback would of never happened 20 years ago when the players were a team rather than individuals thinking that one player is more important than another -- we fans want the football game back or we will stop watching the game!

Tracee Hamilton: Well, I have to tell you, I will not be tuning in to watch Mike Shanahan coach any time soon. Of course it's about the players. And again, I will say this: Subbing McNabb was not the problem so much as 1) replacing him with Grossman and 2) coming up with all these interesting reasons why. I will never accept the premise that Rex Grossman had a better chance of winning that game than Donovan McNabb.

_______________________

My Husband Regrets. . .: Tracee, apologies to the poster who is the UConn fan, but my husband has promised NOT to watch the Pitt/UConn game (he's the Joe Bftsplk of Pittsburgh!) because he values his marriage (and his life!). He will not watch the Steelers play either.

Tracee Hamilton: Well, Huskies fan, you're on your own this weekend!What DOES your husband watch while you watch the games? Is he allowed to watch other sports? Or does he have to clean gutters and stuff.

_______________________

Recent Jake Plummer interview......: Tracee, have seen these quotes from a recent interview with Jake Plummer? I just am not sure if he [Shanahan] is the schrewd mastermind we all think he is without Elway and Davis. He has made a lot of questionable personnel decisions and doesn't appear to be very honest with the players. It was pretty clear that he lied about giving McNabb notice about the benching and to Devon Thomas, too. That's a real fast way to lose a team...... "I had a coach that, regardless of how well I thought I was playing or how well the majority of fans across the country thought I was playing, it was never good enough for him," Plummer said, not bitter but very matter-of-fact. "And that kind of gets frustrating. It just seemed like every game I could have completed these four more passes or these five more shots here and it would have been perfect. And that just wasn't my personality... But Shanahan wanted perfection and he wore a lot of us down there. I think Shanahan is still searching for John Elway," Plummer said. "Somehow, someway, he thinks there's going to be another guy like John Elway. He coached a team to almost perfection [with Elway] so he wanted that again, he wanted that every time we went out there. It's just not realistic."

Tracee Hamilton: Interesting. It's certainly true that Shanahan wants perfection and that's a tough thing to find. I think Peyton Manning probably makes as few mistakes as anyone in football these days, but that's a short list.On the other hand, Plummer has gotten a lot of attention from bashing Shanahan, more than he got for playing. So there's that, too.

_______________________

So, you're not that into fruit?: Hi, Tracee! I totally respect that you're not that into fruit. With that in mind, have you ever been tempted to sample the pomegranate martini that Jason Reid is rumored to enjoy on thursday night happy hours?

Tracee Hamilton: J-Reid has earned all the pomegranate martinis he can get. I would never get in the way of that! No, I'm a Guiness girl, or was until the GF experiment.

_______________________

I wasn't worried about getting yelled at by my supervisor!: T-Ham, I was running late to work this morning, and, truth be told, I was more worried that I would miss "Hamiltime!" than I was about being savagely yelled at by my boss for my tardiness. If it goes down today, do you have my back?

Tracee Hamilton: Of course! Bring it!

_______________________

Jarmarcing me crazy: Jarmarcus Russell? Really? Really? The guy who was cast off to make room for our cast off is trying out for the Redskins? For what, punter? That's essentially what he did without kicking the ball. Really? Bob Holly wasn't available. I don't get it. Even if it was to replace Grossman, it still doesn't make sense. I can understand a genius doing something stupid once in a while. But back to back? Hey Shanny, Mensa's rescinding your membership.

Tracee Hamilton: I saw a clip of him from what I think was a recent court appearance. He would never pass the conditioning drill.

_______________________

Your mom: Tracee, you know good and well I didn't write that comment. I tried to steer you into law school, 'cause that's where the husbands are, but nooooo.....

Tracee Hamilton: Ha! God love my mom, she never told me what to do. Wish she would have steered me to law school; then I'd have a career to fall back on when newspapers become extinct.

_______________________

It's cool that you're a Celts fan, but what's Garnett's deal?: Hi Tracee, did you buy Kevin's assertion that he simply told that Villenueva fellow that he was a "cancer to his team," and not that he looked like a cancer patient? Somehow, I'm having trouble believing that, but I might be wrong. What thinketh thou?

Tracee Hamilton: I think it would be a strange remark to make on the fly. And how is that trash talk, really? Why would Garnett care? Isn't it good for the opponent if a player is a cancer to his team?I hate using that expression, anyway.

_______________________

Anitas? Maple?: I haven't lived in DC for a while but are you talking about the New Mexican restuarant? Wasn't there two of them? I miss my Hollenbeck burrito platter.

Tracee Hamilton: There were a couple of Anitas on Maple, but I had heard they closed. Maybe only one did and the other one, the one closer to Tyson's, is open. I was never a huge fan, personally. I guess they were New Mexican; I can't really say.

_______________________

Anita's: Still there. The original closed, but there's a new one about a half mile up on the other side of the street from the original. Anita herself passed away last year, but the restaurant is still great. I'll give T.G. a try some time. (If you see someon in a K-State shirt, it's probably me!)

Tracee Hamilton: Oh, I'm usually in a KU shirt! That would be just awesome.By the way, true story: I was in there with my dad and some friends and we were talking about Lawrence and a guy came to the table and said "couldn't help overhearing you" and turns out he's the team chaplain for the KU men's basketball team! How great is that!And I got a Bill Self autograph in the mail yesterday from my mom, who saw Self and Frank Martin speak last weekend. She actually likes Frank Martin now, which believe me, is a big change for her. He was very kind to my folks and said he was glad some KU people came (it was a very K-State heavy event).Sorry for the Kansas interlude.

_______________________

Jarmarcus Russell is trying out for the Redskins: This is actually an Arliss-level PR stunt orchestrated by Donovan's team to make McNabb look fit.

Tracee Hamilton: Ha! I have to tell you, though, that McNabb looks fit to me, and I've seen him out of pads, etc. I don't get the "not fit" part or the McFlab jokes. He's in shape.

_______________________

Anitas: Yes, the new, big one right as you enter Vienna from Tysons is still there. There used to be a smaller one further down Maple. I don't know when it closed. There also used to be one in Chantilly. Is that one still there?

Tracee Hamilton: Boy, Anitas owes me a commission today. I don't know about the one in Chantilly.

_______________________

Villenueva from a Husky perspective: Here's the thing: Charlie is more like a parasite than a tumor. He rode Okafor's back to get a title, and he hasn't done jack in the pros.

Tracee Hamilton: "Parasite" would be good trash talk. And less offensive.

_______________________

It's the OL: The Redskins OL problems have been going on a very long time, and we've seen it affect 2 young QBs who we thought were going to be amazing. I think Patrick Ramsey and Jason Campbell both became anxious players because they kept getting knocked around so badly on every play. Ramsey was never able to recover from that and gain confidence and street smarts. Campbell, on the other hand, is being given a chance to blossom in his new situation. I really don't think any QB would do great with our OL, especially an inexperienced one. I'm not really trying to say it's ONLY the OL, but it's a huge, huge factor.

Tracee Hamilton: Agreed.

_______________________

Anita's: Yes, they advertised as New Mexican cuisine. Hubby & I lived in NM for 4 years (and loved it). They served flat enchiladas stacked with sauce & cheese & whatever between them and sopapillas that you would bite the corners off & add some honey. YUM!My husband watches other games while I watch Pittsburgh. He does NOT clean gutters.

Tracee Hamilton: Somehow, I have a feeling YOU clean gutters. You go, girl. Maybe I don't care for New Mexican, then. That might explain it.

_______________________

Riggo: Do you feel riggins is a kindred spirit because of the Kansas connection?

Tracee Hamilton: Riggo is one of the few pro athletes I've met that was a disappointment, to be honest. My folks met him this year and liked him, but he was sort of rude to me. So no.

_______________________

Why does KG trash talk : to players he's much better than? It's like when Kramer bragged about being the best in his karate class - they were all kids as you remember.

Tracee Hamilton: Teehee. Yes. In my "I'd be a great player and a great humanitarian" fantasies, I envision scoring and just handing the ball to the ref or jogging down the court with the same expression, etc. In other words, no hot dogging and such. Act like you've been there. Of course, who knows what I'd really do with that talent and money.

_______________________

What's the GF Experiment?: Guinness is spelled with two n's by the way. Sorry. . .but misspelling Guinness is like misspelling Jesus!

Tracee Hamilton: Thanks. I thought after I hit the button, oops!, but then another Anita's post came in and I was distracted.

_______________________

Anita's : There's also one in Burke, VA and one in Fairfax, VA (near 50/29 intersection). We go there because it's a good place to take a 2 year-old, but the food usually disappoints me.

Tracee Hamilton: Last Anitas, I promise. But they're everywhere.

_______________________

I'm gonna call you Dorothy. . .: . . .because I keep wanting to tell you that you're not in Kansas anymore! You know how the song goes. . .root, root, root for the HOME team!!! Some of us are actually from here you know! ;)

Tracee Hamilton: I don't. I have to have someone to root for. So I root for my alma mater. I think it works for everyone.Good grief, look at the time. Gotta dash. Have a great weekend, everyone, whether watching the games or cleaning the gutters. I'll be at the Caps Sunday and here Monday morning!


© 2010 The Washington Post Company

Discussion Archive

Viewpoint is a paid discussion. The Washington Post editorial staff was not involved in the moderation.

Network News

X My Profile