Dan Snyder: Big Bad Dan and His Ludicrous Lawsuit Against Washington City Paper

Greg StarddardContributor IIIFebruary 12, 2011

NASHVILLE, TN - AUGUST 11: Daniel Snyder, owner fo the Washington Redskins watches from the sideline during warmups before a preseason game on August 11, 2007 at LP Field in Nashville, Tennessee. The Redskins beat the Titans 14-6. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)
Joe Murphy/Getty Images

Let me say right out of the gate that I'm not looking for trouble.  I don't want the second wealthiest NFL owner putting me on his radar.  However, one has to wonder why Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder is concerned about what a sports reporter says about him.  I mean, he owns one of the most storied franchises in American sports, Six Flags, Dick Clark Productions, a radio network, etc. But he seems intent on targeting the Washington City Paper over an article he says unfairly portrayed him.

I'm not looking for trouble, but Snyder suing the Washington City Paper is like having Kobe play one on one against my six-year-old nephew—winner take all!!  C'mon, man.  Are you serious?  I read the piece by writer Dave McKenna and thought it was brilliant. Funny. Factual. Informative.  Good reading.  I didn't, however, see any reason to unleash the legal pit bulls. Flattering? Absolutely not. But, you have to admit Snyder isn't one of the most beloved figures in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area.

Love him or hate him, you've gotta understand Snyder's not going to win any popularity contests on the banks of the Potomac. Heck, the Skins haven't sniffed a Super Bowl since 1991.  The team has suffered since he bought it.  Roller-coaster coaches, high turnover with players, schemes, direction and everything else.  It stinks, and I'm not even from the D.C. area originally. But I know a bad football team and a bad owner when I see one.

But a $2 million lawsuit against a small newspaper that had the audacity to criticize an NFL owner?  Let's get real here! There's an old saying about how the truth hurts. Well, it must be slapping the heck out of Danny Boy right now. 

The article didn't slander Snyder, his wife or his family. It did however mention how he fired Marty Schottenheimer after one year, when he went 8-8.  It did mention how he fired Norv Turner after he led the Skins to the playoffs.  It did mention how he spent millions on Deion Sanders, who promptly walked away from the Skins after one year and $8 million.  It did mention how he spent millions on an old Bruce Smith.  It did mention how he spent $100 million on Albert Haynesworth. 

It did mention how he hired and fired a successful COLLEGE coach in Steve "Old Ball Coach" Spurrier. It did mention how he hired Jim Zorn as head coach, despite the fact that he had no NFL head coaching experience and then canned him as well.

Hey, I could go on and on at the risk of hearing from Snyder's lawyers, but as I said, I don't want any trouble.  But you can't blame others for mistakes you make in life, whether it's personal or professional shortcomings.  Sometimes we all have to look in the mirror, and you know what? Sometimes what we see ain't pretty, but it's reality.

As the kids say these days, I'm just keeping it real. The Redskins have been a very, very bad football team for a while.  Put them in the same category with the Washington Wizards.  Snyder brought back Coach Joe Gibbs a few years ago, hoping to recapture the glory days.  Guess what?  Lightning doesn't strike twice baby.  Gibbs is one of the best coaches to ever lead an NFL team, but his days are long gone.  And Danny Boy found that out quickly. Now he has pinned his unrealistic hopes on Mike Shanahan. 

All Shanny did was show up in D.C. and quickly pick a fight with Haynesworth. Shanny ended the season fighting with Donovan McNabb.  Things are really looking good at Redskins Park.  Keep up the good work, coach.  What's next? A new season with a new controversy involving another player? Message to Shanny:  Win some darn football games and lose the ego!  But more on that during another time.

Big Bad Dan's lawsuit has been laughed at and criticized from the Washington Post to various sports columnists around the country.  What does that tell you?  How about making some good hires in the front office, stop wasting millions of dollars on mediocre players and growing some thick skin?  Dan, you're an NFL owner.  Criticism comes with the game baby!

I'm not looking for trouble, but I am looking for the return of an NFL playoff team in Washington D.C.