Quick Links

Paralysis by analysis

Paralysis by analysis

I've been suffering from paralysis by analysis for the past 48 hours. Every since the hiring of Jim Zorn, I've been bookmarking articles about the hire and about the process, ready to pick them apart and point out the biases, the illogical and untrue statements, and the hypocrisy present in so many of them. But as soon as I found one that was good fodder, I'd find another one that was even dumber.

So, first I'm going to go into a little more detail about my opinion of the hiring and then, over the coming days when I've gathered enough of the good, the bad, and the Adam Schein take on the Zorn hiring and do a few prize pull quotes from them with a reasoned response.

While it was surprising, I like the hire. It was absolutely nothing like what everyone said a Dan Snyder hire would be. He was a small name, an outside-the-box idea, a tiny splash in the pool. It's as though Zorn was hired by the Bizarro Snyder, at least according to his media image.

As far as the hiring process, I'm just glad it's over. I don't buy for a second that he was brought in as OC with the notion that he was a candidate for the head job. Snyder and Cerrato were suffering from their own case of paralysis by analysis and it occurred to the latter that the solution to their dilemma was the guy that was settling into the office down the hall from the one that used to belong to Joe Gibbs. If you're obsessed with process, as many in Washington tend to be and as many writers tend to be, the search was a black mark. If you're interested in results, all's well that ends well.

I like Zorn, from what I've read about him and what I've heard from him. Speaking of outside the box, that defines his thinking. Whether it's having his QB's play dodge ball or romp on a Slip 'n' Slide (see video embedded below) or riding his bicycle to work, he thinks about thinks and does things just a little bit differently than the rest of us. It's not necessarily a case of different is better (more on that later), but the change from the cookie-cutter approach is refreshing.

Zorn's introductory presser yesterday was not a virtuoso performance by a polished performer by any stretch of the imagination. He sounded nervous and he committed a few gaffes like the maroon and black reference, which was especially embarrassing because he volunteered the incorrect information. He'll be consulting with a PR firm before the media blizzard starts in the summer.

We don't know whether or not Zorn will be successful as a head coach. Many, of course, have buried him as one of the worst hires in years. I don't think that he will be, but there's no way of knowing for sure. Of course, it's the fact that we don't know that makes the two thumbs down reviews so utterly void of credibility.

His success, or lack thereof, will not be determined by his lack of experience as a coordinator. I'll take that back partially; it may hurt him this coming season. Plenty of coaches have been successful with limited or no experience as an NFL coordinator, Andy Reid (zero seasons), Tom Coughlin (zero seasons) and Mike Tomlin (one season). On the other hand, many star coordinators have flopped as NFL head coaches (look no further than Turner, Norv and Petitbon, Richie). It may take a year for him to get down the mechanics of things, but, ultimately, he either has "it" or he doesn't.

Quick Links

2019 Redskins Draft Bracket: DK Metcalf and TJ Hockenson would inject the offense with needed talent


2019 Redskins Draft Bracket: DK Metcalf and TJ Hockenson would inject the offense with needed talent

NBC Sports Washington wants Redskins fans to help decide the team's ideal 2019 first-round pick by voting in the Redskins Draft Bracket on Twitter. Before you vote, though, take in this breakdown of the next matchup.

Looking for a stat to describe the rough season the Redskins receivers had in 2018? Well, there's tons to choose from.

The team's wideouts had the second-fewest catches of 20-plus yards in the league. Antonio Brown had more grabs, yards and touchdowns than Washington's top three targets combined. Josh Doctson led the squad in receiving yards — with a measly 532.

You could easily find plenty more, but those three are all you need to realize that DK Metcalf should absolutely be on the franchise's mind when it comes to their first-round pick this April.

While Metcalf's numbers at Ole Miss won't overly impress you, his athleticism and potential explosiveness as a pro absolutely does. That's why it's no surprise the WR met with the Redskins while at the Combine, as Jay Gruden and Co. are well aware that they must become more dangerous on the outside.

As with any prospect, there are questions with Metcalf. He only had 67 catches in 21 games in school, and while he shredded most of the drills in Indianapolis, his short area agility numbers were worse than Tom Brady. That's not great.

Regardless, he'd instantly become the offense's scariest athlete, and you have to like his chances of at least contributing splash plays early while he learns the nuances of the NFL.

The 'Skins don't just need improvement out wide, however. Jordan Reed was largely ineffective despite playing for much of 2018, Vernon Davis is 35 years old and Jeremy Sprinkle isn't much of a threat in the air at tight end.

Perhaps TJ Hockenson could be their answer. says the Iowa product "is an ascending talent with a chance to become one of the best all-around tight ends in the game." 

One problem the Burgundy and Gold have encountered in recent years is Reed and Davis don't help much as blockers, while Sprinkle won't worry a defense with his hands. Taking Hockenson at pick No. 15 would mean Gruden could finally have a guy who excels in both areas.

It remains to be seen whether Metcalf or Hockenson will last until the Redskins' choice, as they could continue to rise up boards as the draft draws closer. If both or either is there, however, they need to be heavily considered. 

While the offense may have to be run-oriented again in 2019, it still needs more weapons for whoever is under center. They won't be able to grind out 13-play scoring drives every time they need a TD, and grabbing Metcalf or Hockenson would go a long way in introducing a new element to the group.

You've heard the case for both players. Now, retweet or like depending on whom you'd prefer to see move on in the bracket.


Quick Links

Five of the most memorable and wild Redskins upsets from the past 10 years

USA TODAY Sports Images

Five of the most memorable and wild Redskins upsets from the past 10 years

Upsets get a lot of attention in March, due to the allure of the NCAA Tournament and the non-allure of everyone who loves to talk about how THEY CALLED that upset that YOU DIDN'T.

With that being said, upsets happen every month of the year, and they go down weekly in the NFL. So, how about we look back at some of the Redskins' particularly surprising wins from the past decade?

Here are five of the most memorable. 

5) 2014 - Redskins 27, Eagles 24

The Eagles came into FedEx Field late in 2014 with a 9-5 record needing a win to remain squarely in the playoff hunt. The Redskins, meanwhile, were just 3-11 and had changed quarterbacks a depressing five times.

Yet in this matchup, Robert Griffin III managed the offense well and DeSean Jackson had more than 120 receiving yards against his former team because DeSean Jackson is awesome.

Yes, the 'Skins were outproduced in nearly every major stat category. But Mark Sanchez — sorry, future Redskin great Mark Sanchez — had two costly turnovers and Cody Parkey missed two field goals (Philly fans have probably forgiven him by now), allowing the home team to squeak out a W.

4) 2009 - Redskins 27, Broncos 17

This is one of those random Redskins games you've probably forgotten about because it came in a lost season, but it was still a miraculous victory.

The most iconic play from this one was a Hunter Smith to Mike Sellers TD on a fake field goal — a fake, mind you, that came after a timeout by Jim Zorn because the unit's first fake punt attempt included only 10 players on the field.

Denver was 6-2 but lost Kyle Orton to injury at halftime. Jason Campbell, on the other hand, helped the Burgundy and Gold score more than 17 points for the first time all year.

"We've had a desert experience -- very arid, if you will -- for the last few weeks," Zorn said postgame. "So to be able to come out with a win, you almost don't know how to feel."

The Zorn Era was terrible, but you have to give the dude credit for working "very arid" into an NFL press conference.

3) 2012 - Redskins 40, Saints 32

There was plenty of hype surrounding RG3's debut, but there was no way he was going to lead the Redskins to a win over the Saints... in his debut... in the Superdome... right?

Wrong. Incorrect. Not right.

Griffin found Pierre Garcon early for an 88-yard score and the offense stayed hot all afternoon, outpacing a New Orleans squad that was favored by more than a touchdown. If you want a further reminder of how impressive this effort was, look back at what happened to this franchise in the Superdome this past season. 

2) 2014 - Redskins 20, Cowboys 17

Dallas' six-game winning streak stood no chance against Colt McCoy, as the Texas legend went into the Cowboys' house for a wild Monday Night triumph.

Kai Forbath's field goal sealed it in overtime and Bashaud Breeland dominated Dez Bryant, but McCoy was the star. On the way to his first successful start in close to three seasons, the signal caller went 25 for 30 in the air and found the end zone on the ground, too.

1) 2017 - Redskins 17, Seahawks 14

If someone in your life thinks they can't do something, just pull up the box score or highlights from this contest. They will then realize that nothing is impossible, because the Redskins beating the Seahawks on this Sunday should've been impossible, yet it somehow happened anyway.

Washington went into Seattle's harsh environment down six starters, including three on the O-line, but Kirk Cousins kept things together and found Brian Quick and Josh Doctson for long completions on a harrowing last drive to steal this result. It wasn't quite UMBC over Virginia, but it was absolutely a stunning final nonetheless.