The Washington Redskins actually had a pretty nice start to the 2011 season, and some were even confident enough to tab them as the favorite to win the NFC East.
Then, after a few heartbreaking losses within the division, the Redskins became the NFL's "best bad team."
However, Washington has started to look more and more like, well, Washington with each passing week.
And, as a result, Mike Shanahan is catching more and more heat.
Today, the Redskins are currently losing 16-3 at home to the San Francisco 49ers. A loss for Washington will give them a 3-5 record, pushing them further and further out of the NFC East race.
Looking at this team on paper, there is no way you can actually expect them to be playoff caliber. Even with the jam-packed state of the NFC divisions (and every NFL division for that matter), the Redskins just stick out like a sore thumb.
This is a team whose starting quarterback is John Beck, with an option of Rex Grossman. Their tailback is NFL journeyman Tim Hightower.
All around the board, this team is competing in one of the NFL's toughest divisions with underwhelming players.
And, with their current schedule, it appears likely a 6-10 season will be best-case scenario.
It's hard to imagine a Super Bowl-winning coach like Shanahan could be in such a tough situation, but that's exactly what's going on.
The problem is Shanahan's coaching style does not gel at all with the team he has in front of him. Sure, personnel moves since he arrived have been questionable, but he came into an equally bad situation.
He is a quarterbacks coach, and an offensive guru, yet the personnel he has around him is full of players who have proven their ineptitude over the years.
Grossman's apparent improvements at the beginning of the year were fool's gold—as was any production from Hightower.
There are no stars on this team, and a coach with a track record like Shanahan's could use some help.
He's not getting any help from the front office. This team doesn't have anything to build upon. It's full of the NFL's leftovers.
The fact Shanahan had this team looking good at the beginning of the year could be a testament to him, but the truth is it is evident his future in Washington is gloomy.
Shanahan is in the latter stages of his NFL career, but more importantly, he is in a situation that is heading towards a brick wall.
It could benefit him to finally retire, or possibly move to another team this offseason.