Jason Campbell Has Class His Bosses Don't Deserve
That photo is of Jason Campbell after a difficult loss to the New York Giants in December. You could be convinced that photo was taken after Campbell was told that Redskins Owner Dan Snyder and General Manager Vinny Cerrato were shopping him to the Broncos in exchange for Jay Cutler.
But that's not how Campbell operates, even though nobody would blame him if he did.
Campbell, 16-20 in his three seasons starting, has already faced opposition from his own organization. As the Redskins entered the playoffs in 2007, Campbell had finished recovering from a knee injury and could have started against Seattle.
Coach Gibbs chose to go with veteran Todd Collins, who had led the December surge that propelled the Redskins to the playoffs. Campbell didn't complain. He recognized that Collins was the hot hand, and that he was still the future of the team.
Well, at least, that's what we thought back then.
What's become apparent now is that Dan Snyder, after calming down a bit during the Gibbs II years, has gone off the deep end. Going into 2007, there were no gigantic free agent signings. In 2008, the Skins traded a second and sixth-round pick for Dolphins DE Jason Taylor.
We all stood back and said, "Well, they lost some DEs in training camp. They need one, why not Jason Taylor?"
Karma answered that question. He finished the season beat-up and with a grand total of three sacks. It's as if some football God is trying to send Snyder a message, but Snyder doesn't have time to check his messages because he's too busy working on the next deal.
Snyder has spent $180 million on Albert Haynesworth, DeAngello Hall, and Derrick Dockery so far this offseason. All big names, only one signed to anything resembling a "deal": Dockery's five-year $26.5 million contract. Albert Haynesworth for $100 million? What other team would have come close to offering that kind of money?
Once again, the Redskins outbid themselves.
It's remarkable that a team this interested in free agency has a decent draft record. Seventh round pick Chris Horton played very well in 2008, grabbing three interceptions. He was the highlight of an otherwise puzzling draft class.
Wide receivers Malcolm Kelly and Devin Thomas had injury-plagued and unproductive years, but most NFL analysts say that it takes two or three years for a wide receiver to truly develop.
If this team would settle down in the offseason and preserve their draft picks, they could contend in the NFC East. Sure, they will probably contend in the division in 2009 because of all of the big names on the roster, but if they want any long-term success in this league, they need to look at the most recent champions: Steelers, Giants, Colts, and Patriots, and do their best to imitate that formula.
The Redskins aren't the only ones trying their model. The Cowboys try the spend-and-win approach, and it has produced zero playoff wins since 1996.
Even in this era of free agency, the the teams who can best balance their own roster with smart, role-player acquisitions, are the ones who will win Super Bowls. It's a shame Snyder can't comprehend that.
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