If last August, you told me that in the last few weeks of the season, the playoff hopes for the Redskins would essentially hinge on two attempts by Mike Sellers from about the 1 yd line, I would have probably cried out of pure joy. To think we would A) have a chance at the playoffs at all, and B) have a chance to put it on Big Mike's back...well, it would seem to be all you could ask for given the relative youth of our team/coach, as well as the toughness of our division.
Sure, losing to the Rams and the Bengals stings. A lot. Those were games we were capable of winning. Beating the Cowboys and Eagles on the road in back to back weeks earlier this season still feels good. Those were games we were more than capable of losing. Sweeping the dirty, no-good, low-down, scummy, grubby, feculent Eagles is even more satisfying than I dreamed it could be. Without the added intensity of a playoff chase, or the additional joy of already making the postseason, I am left with nothing to obscure the feeling of euphoria that I now know can only be the result of sticking it to Philly.
We know now that Zorn will be back, and we know that the front office intends to again try and grow our overall number of draft picks. It is conceivable that after next year's haul, as much as 40% of our roster will be comprised of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd year players. All of this points to at least the illusion of purpose and strategy. Getting younger, growing with a coach, and developing players at the skill positions is what good teams do. We will know soon enough if we are allowed to consider our team in that category. I believe chief among the metrics we will use to evaluate our direction is if Cerrato wakes up and gets a couple linemen to help us on both sides of the ball. Preferrably in the draft, (I think I saw them loading a Fedex truck full of money to get a headstart on the Albert Haynesworth negotiations.)
It sure would be great to win in San Fran this week and get to 9 wins, even it moves our draft pick down a bit in that first round. Nothing is meaningless. Every snap JC is able to take in the regular season gets him one snap closer to figuring it out. And hopefully next year, with the help of a younger offensive line, perhaps he might even have enough time to consider the deeper routes that Devin Thomas and Santana Moss will be running. But we get ahead of ourselves. There is game yet to be played. Three hours of immortality in the San Francisco sun. The Ahern Inquirer will be there, and ebagg will give us a full account of the proceedings.
Merry Christmas to all the faithful Ahern readers:
To our Ravens fans, you got the best team in MD this year. Congrats, and hell of a job against the Cowgirls.
To our Redskins fans, enjoy the prospect of being on the ground floor of something that could be great.
To the New York, Dallas, and Philly folks who find their way here, you will Kneel Before Zorn. Maybe not today, and maybe not tomorrow, but don't be throwing away those knee pads.