Day After the Game: Coach Zorn’s Post-Eagles Press Conference

No major injuries incurred, no disastrous plays, a four game winning streak … these things are all indisputably terrific, but they do somewhat reduce the interesting soundbites at the coach’s press conference.

  • There’s an interesting balance in Coach Zorn: he’s clearly proud of his accomplishments, he enjoys playcalling and coming up with clever options, but he never fails to put the bulk of the credit on his players and their execution. “We get good response because our guys are executing,” he said. “There’s a 50/50 chance I could be a goat as well.” And then on the other hand, when the Washington Post’s Jason Reid mentioned that he had to believe coaching was an element in the win streak, Zorn immediately said “Absolutely.” He paused to let that sink in, then continued, “In my assistant coaching career, I felt like we were about 30 percent of success on the field.” He did acknowledge that he hadn’t worked up percentages for head coaching, but it’s an impressive balance he strikes.
  • He also seems not to want to be pigeonholed as Wacky Guy or Maverick Coach. (Note: “maverick” here is used without any political connotations whatsoever; I mention this to forestall any side arguments in the comments.) “I hope it’s not borderline crazy,” he said of his aggressive playcalling. “I hope it’s sound. That’s what I want to be. I’ve also punted on fourth and inches when we could’ve gone for it.”
  • Probably the most interesting were his comments on rookie punter Durant Brooks. “Our punter has to improve his hangtime and distance,” he said plainly. “There’s not a whole lot we can say other than, ‘Yep, he’s gotta punt better.'” The optimistic view, Coach? “He was an OUTSTANDING punter a week ago…. I’m not gonna be in such a hurry to make sure that he’s gone.”
  • Zorn used the Devin Thomas incident, when he was reprimanded by his teammates after pulling down a penalty that negated a Santana Moss first down, as “an example of how our team is trying to play together” and how they’re buying into the team-over-individual concept. That’s a positive spin on a frustrating play by the rookie.
  • Add another to the “violent” count. “I looked at how violent our running backs play — those things impressed me,” he said, as part of a description of what he noticed watching film on his new team this offseason.
  • You might have heard mention that the Redskins have completed their divisional road schedule, and that their next three opponents are unlikely to even show up and can be safely ignored. “That’s probably the scariest thing out there for me,” Zorn said, adding, “I’m not gonna dance the jig” to celebrate the upcoming opponents.
  • Cornelius Griffin is scheduled to have an MRI on his shoulder today, even though he continued playing after the injury, and Malcolm Kelly’s knee is swollen after his limited action yesterday. (Which almost seems not to matter, as Zorn reiterated that Kelly has a lot of work to do on his routes before he’s ready to play.)
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9 Responses

  1. Sorry if this was discussed earlier, but is there any take on Casey Rabach? Any way his mental mistakes can be rectified?

  2. I know Rabach had two critical touchdown-reversing screwups last week at Dallas, but I can’t seem to remember anything obvious he did wrong yesterday… refresh my memory?

  3. I believe Rabach snapped the ball early on that play where Campbell simply took a knee for no apparent reason.

  4. Also, speaking of odd plays, am I the only one who noticed that strange play where McNabb seemed rushed with the play clock stuck at 4 seconds left, then called a time out, only to have everyone continue to set up for the play, then he seemed to call an audible and take a snap, all with the clock still reading 4 seconds? I don’t remember having anything to drink yesterday and did not knowingly ingest any mind-altering substances during the game, yet no one seems to be mentioning this odd chain of events. It’s like it never happened. But I know it did…

  5. The Rabach snap was to try and catch the D in the neutral zone. Same scenario with Jason’s what looked to be odd throw-away play on third down on the last drive. He was trying to draw the penalty (which should have been called) on the DB for contact after 5 yards on thrash.

    Both were inexplicable non-calls. But we’re accustomed to that now in Philly.

    As for the McNabb play – I heard the announcers say that the play clock was wrong and the refs had reset it without blowing the play dead. It did look suspicious live for sure.

  6. Nothing was worse than when El got up after not being touched and they called the play dead. Another game deciding TD that was taken away. WOW!

  7. Agreed. El said after the game that one ref called that he wasn’t down and the other two didn’t know what was going on and eventually one of them blew the whistle.

    The officiating was horrible in that game.

  8. He did get touched. It was just really delayed. I’m not one of those fans who thinks every call against the skins is a bad call.

  9. I agree he was touched on the shoulder. You can see his pad and jersey move as the D player brushes off it when ARE is rolling. I don’t think either official actually saw that – but if they hadn’t blow the whistle I’m sure it would have been challenged and overt turned.

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