I have always enjoyed watching the postgame handshake, trying to read the body language and theorizing what is being said. The Jim Harbaugh-vs.-Jim-Schwartz skirmish will provide hours of fun. “I’d never drive a Ford!” “Take that back, you Communist!”

I particularly liked seeing Mike Shanahan get right up in Andy Reid’s ear Sunday at FedEx Field so that his sweet nothings would not be overheard by the rabble.

The uninformed might imagine Shanahan said something like, “Don’t let the [expletives] get you down” to the previously beleaguered Eagles coach, who bought himself perhaps a half-hour of peace with Sunday’s 20-13 victory.

But I think we all know what Shanahan really said was, “I gotta look at the game film.”

I lost count of the “gotta look at the game film” answers during Shanahan’s news conference Sunday. It would make a great drinking game if I didn’t have to work on Mondays. In fairness to the coach, however, asking him the prognosis of injuries to Trent Williams (bad) and Kory Lichtensteiger (awful) right after a game leaves him little option. I know he has that Shanahan Stare, but unless it comes with X-ray vision, he’s going to have to wait for actual doctors to perform actual medical tests.

Asking him about Rex Grossman’s interceptions, however, that’s fair game. Still, Shanahan might as well just shorten those answers. The media all have deadlines, and let’s face it: He has to look at the game film. I suggest something like this:

“Coach, how bad is Williams’ high ankle sprain?”

“I gotta look at the game film.”

“How long do you think Kory will be out?”

“Game film.”

“Will Cooley need surgery?”


“What was wrong with the running game today?”

“Film! Film! Film!”

“Who will be your starting quarterback next Sunday?”

(Pantomimes a movie camera like he’s playing charades, leaves the podium.)

Of course, that’s the big question today, although wouldn’t it be magical if it wasn’t? Quarterback controversies in Washington are so “been there, done that.”

Yet somewhere in the depths of Redskins Park, Grossman and John Beck are contemplating the banged up roster, especially the left side of the offensive line. Their conversation is probably going something like this:

“Why don’t you go ahead and start, John?”

“No, Rex, get back on that horse!”

“It’s your turn in the saddle, John! You da man!”

“No, Rex, you da man!”

Of course, that’s not true. Both men want the job, and it seems like now it’s Beck’s to lose. And this may be the pattern for the season. Maybe “four” is where the turnover bar has been set: four turnovers in a game, quarterback changes. We’ll see. As soon as Shanahan has looked at that game film a few hundred times, all of our questions will be answered, and those answers may not be pretty. In fact, we may long for the days of “I gotta look at the game film.”