Monday, December 03, 2007

Redskins Continue to be Mystified by Time-Outs
The Redskins have been haunted all year by poor clock management, which has left them without time-outs in crucial late game situations. Redskin Coach Joe Gibbs performed a variation on this theme yesterday, though, when he managed to get to the final seconds of the game with time-outs in hand. That's the good news, the bad new is that he tried to call two in a row at the game's very end, and the second one resulted in a 15 yard penalty that changed a Bills field goal attempt from challenging to a chip shot. Coach Gibbs found another excruciating way to lose a home game to a poor team, on a day when the whole Redskins organization wanted desperately to win for their murdered teammate and friend, Sean Taylor. Talk about painful to watch.

Prior to last Sundays game, an observer would have to think that it can't really get any worse. Wrong. Then post-game was even worse than the game. Everybody wants Coach Gibbs to succeed. During the press conference, reporters tried to extract something from Gibbs that would mean that, well, it really wasn't his fault. Gibbs stood firm, though, and said yes, it would have been nice if the official would have correctly answered his question about whether he could call a time out, but he still should have known the rule. It was a hard moment, for the reporters at the press conference, and for people like me who have Joe Gibbs on a pedestal. He knew the rule, he said, he just forgot it in the heat of the moment. Stuff like that happens to regular people. But this is Joe Gibbs.

It's hard to say why Gibbs' second regime is such a failure. But he definitely lost something during the years he spent away from the game at NASCAR, playing daddy to a bunch of jockey-sized richboy hotheads. Maybe the fumes destroyed too many brain cells. I hope that's not the case.

I do know, though, that it is time for Gibbs II to end. This season is as bad as it can be, play it out, figure out a plan to get Coach Gibbs into retirement gracefully, and try something new.

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