It's the most wonderful time of the year, unless of course you are a Redskins fan. I don't know why I bother getting mad anymore. By now, this should be easy. It's the time of year where we hope to ruin other team's seasons and think about the NFL Draft.
Speaking of the NFL Draft, congratulations to the portion of the fan base that is ultra excited when the team loses to keep draft position. Don't get me wrong, I have mixed feelings as I watch the team play out the string. We do know this much: the Skins are still "Whiffin' for Griffin." I figure if that doesn't work out, we could trade for TJ Yates since he is excelling in Kyle Shanahan's offense that is two years removed from Kyle Shanahan and still rolling with a third-string Quarterback.
Anyway, in this week's Chain Reactions, we look into whether or not Rex Grossman should be back next year, more DeAngelo Hall misadventures and the Maryland Football program getting an early Christmas gift.
Bring Rexy Back? In a word, NO
There are points several points in a Redskins season when we sit back and say, "it can't get any lower than this." Of course, it always does get worse. We are at another one of those moments now. There was actually support this week in the D.C. media ranks to bring back Rex Grossman, afree agent at the end of the season, after his performance against the New England Patriots.
I understand we are all trained to believe Bill Belichick is a defensive genius, but the numbers don't lie. The Patriots' defense stinks and everyone lights them up. Chad Henne had 416 yards against them. Jason Campbell had 344. Vince Young had 400 yards. Dan Orlovsky had 353 yards. All those quarterbacks lost, as did Rex and his 252 with two turnovers. Rich Tandler from CSN Washington thankfully sees the light too.
Even if you want to say that was a good game for Grossman, let's go way back in history, all the way back to the week before the New England game. Against a Jets defense ranked in the middle of the league, Rex completed 19 of 46 passes for 221 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. That's an awful 47.5 passer rating and a putrid 4.8 yards per pass attempt. And he lost a fumble to set up the Jets' clinching touchdown.
Grossman can move the chains at times, but he also consistently turns the ball over. Even he admitted this week that turnovers lose football games. Only two other quarterbacks, Josh Freeman and Phillip Rivers, have more interceptions that Rex's 16, and he has far fewer attempts. Imagine if he was never benched. He could be leading the league. In 13 starts as the Redskins' quarterback, he has 20 interceptions.
Grossman believes the Skins could have won more if they eliminated turnovers. In his nine-year career Grossman has thrown 56 interceptions and 52 touchdowns. His passer rating is 28th in the league. He's not changing and the Redskins are not going anywhere with him.
The No. 1 offseason priority has to be drafting a young quarterback. That quarterback needs to take as many snaps as humanly possibly in the offseason, training camp, preseason and regular season next year. Stop telling me about Aaron Rodgers playing behind Brett Favre and other wonderful grooming stories. That's ancient history. Cam Newton and Andy Dalton were thrown to the wolves with no offseason, and they ended up just fine. Certainly with the offensive coaching talents of the Shanahans, the Redskins' future franchise QB can be ready in week one, whether its Matt Barkley or RGIII. Either will be a better plan than bringing Rex back.
What to Do with DeAngelo Hall
Last week I advocated the Redskins keep a pair of smokers on the team, so I would be a huge hypocrite if I said cut DeAngelo Hall after his watch party on the Rob Gronkowski play and flag-throwing incident. Sunday's loss to the Patriots was not one of Hall's best days in the burgundy and gold. He frustrates fans because he does talk at an All Pro level, but does not play like one on a weekly basis.
Sunday's screw ups frustrated coach Mike Shanahan who said after further review he would have pulled the Pro Bowl corner.
"I didn't see what happened with DeAngelo," Shanahan said. "If I would have saw what happened, I would have took him out, too."
Hall is not a shutdown corner, but who really is anymore? The Redskins have lots of needs and the last thing they can afford to do is start creating more needs by cutting starters. Does the captain need to pick up his play? Of course he does, but the safety position has hardly been the picture of consistency this season without Laron Landry and Oshiomogho Atogwe most of the year too. Hopefully, a clean slate next season will get help all parties involved.
Christmas Comes Early for Terps
For Maryland fans hoping a Randy Edsall firing from Santa, sorry, can't help you. However, we do have something for you under the tree for the Terps football fan in your life. Offensive Coordinator Gary Crowton is headed out of town. Apparently, the university didn't appreciate his public campaigning for the Colorado State job.
You could argue he could have been canned with cause before this incident. He never adjusted his offensive scheme to work with quarterback Danny O'Brien's strengths. Maybe a new offensive coordinator will be able to build back up any collateral damage that was done to O'Brien's confidence.
Edsall is apparently figuring some things out, or someone is in his ear, because he is about to hire super recruiter Mike Locksley to replace Crowton. Hopefully, Locksley can be the buffer to the control-freak coach that has run off eight players since the season ended and 20 since taking the program over in January. Those who support Edsall (wherever they are) will tell you this is part of the process of his program.
Next season will be huge for Edsall's program ,coming off the disappointing 2-10 season. If they don't show significant progress, things could get ugly -- not to say it wasn't this year with plenty of empty seats and players airing out their dirty laundry via Twitter. We do know this much: if Locksley can do what he's done in the past with D.C.-area talent in the program, things will turn around. Let's hope Edsall can keep that talent.