The Portis/Zorn Radio Apocalypse!!!!!!! (Kind Of)

Photo by Ned Dishman

Photo by Ned Dishman

As I was driving back to Redskins Park from Antwaan Randle El‘s charity event today, I was listening to Clinton Portis‘s appearance on the John Thompson Show on ESPN980. Portis was clearly frustrated — with the team’s losing, with being benched (or “benched,” depending on who you ask), with his head coach — and he wasn’t hiding it.

I was surprised at his candor, but — as the show progressed — fairly impressed with what I perceived at the time as his restraint in not completely unleashing those frustrations. When I got back to the Park, I was immediately made aware that my interpretation of the broadcast was emphatically NOT that of the general public.

“Did you see the twenty page thread on ExtremeSkins?!?!?!” someone asked. “Portis just KILLED Zorn on the radio,” someone else said.

Dan Steinberg over at the DC Sports Bog (who has a fairly lengthy transcript posted) went with “Portis Smashes Zorn”, while Ryan O’Halloran at Redskins 360 kept it restrained with “Portis Unplugged”.

I still don’t buy it. Take the much-repeated implication that Portis said that he should go on IR: he was clearly, CLEARLY being sarcastic, and Coach Thompson calls him on it immediately. That was the tone I caught through most of what he said, and it’s a tone that Portis uses a lot.

More to the point, I would both hope and expect that Portis would be upset at not being put in the game, something Zorn addressed in HIS response later, also on ESPN980.

    Zorn:Well, anytime you don’t go in, that’s the way you feel. And he is a big part of our offense, and he’s sitting on the bench, he’s gotta feel like he’s benched. I don’t blame him for that.

    Andy Pollin: Do you feel like you’re on the same page as him right now?

    Zorn:Well, when you have a player who wants to play — he’s an every-down back; that’s the way he sees himself, and that’s the way we see him — he needs to be on the field. I felt the same way when I played: if I wasn’t on the field, I didn’t think there was a chance.

That’s when the hosts mentioned the previous interview, that Portis felt like he didn’t have open lines of communication, and that he should just be put on IR if he wasn’t being used. So they asked Zorn what he thought of that.

    Zorn:That we put him on injured reserve? No, I think he’s gotten himself healthy, I think he felt a lot better after this game, and I’m looking forward to having him out there on every snap practicing getting ready for the Cincinnati Bengals so we can utilize him as our every down back.

    Steve Czaban: Is he healthy enough to practice this week?

    Zorn: Yeah.

    Steve Czaban:So he will practice?

    Zorn: Absolutely. From what I understand from our trainers, his knee is fine, his neck is no longer stiff, and from what I understand, he’ll be ready to go.

And then they asked how much it had hurt him not practicing.

    Zorn:That’s hard to say, because the first couple of weeks when he didn’t practice, I mean, he gained 145 yards, and the second week he gained 123 yards, but I think as the time went on, it wasn’t that we weren’t getting the running ability.

    It was just, he was doing great things of blocking, and– his effort was high. I mean, he would tell you this, and I agree with him wholeheartedly: when he is playing the game, he’s giving you his best effort. And I’ve said this over and over: he’s very wicked on the football field. He’s what you want.

    But what I wanted on the field on Sunday — and he had been out, I mean, each week I felt like in certain parts of the game, he was getting out on routes, but it wasn’t exact and quick, and I thought, “Okay, here’s an opportunity for us to get Ladell in,” who has practiced and he knows it just because he’s rehearsed it and rehearsed it.

    I think he’s a confident player and he would believe he could do it without reps; I just made the decision not to give him that chance.

On the whole, the Portis thing was less than optimal at this point, yes. Obviously, things are better when your team’s star running back is NOT questioning the lines of communication with the head coach.

But I stand by my initial impression while I listened live: it was a frustrated guy blowing off some steam, and far from the end of the world. Besides, the last time Clinton Portis got involved in a radio fracas, he followed it not long after with some of the best running of his recent career. If that happens again, the team will be actively encouraging him to call in and insult people.

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80 Responses

  1. Great, just great. Keep on pretending the LaCanfora blog doesn’t exist. Typical of the Redskins controlled media.

  2. MTSC, on December 9th, 2008 at 5:16 pm Said:

    Great, just great. Keep on pretending the LaCanfora blog doesn’t exist. Typical of the Redskins controlled media.
    =========

    Considering that JLC just links to Steinberg also, you’re pretty much dumb.

  3. And the typical “you’re dumb” response. Thanks for that brilliant insight.

  4. MTSC, it’s redskins.com, you know they have to put the company spin on it. Every thing will be just fine…wink. :)

  5. “Portis Rips Zorn (Updated)

    Dan Steinberg reports:”

    So yeah, in this case JLC is just quoting the DC Sports Blog, which does get linkage from this site.

    Honestly, I was mixed on keeping Portis out for most of the game, it seemed like it hurt our immediate chances of winning the game, but if Ray Lewis kept smashing our run game, we’d be in the same position we were in last week after the game, with Portis sore and questionable for the following week. Now we’ve got a healthy running game, just gotta figure out what to do about the o-line. Maybe some of that double tackle on the same side formations that the Ravens were using?

  6. wow dude. Portis is pissed. I would be too. Zorn is a fool for not playing him. Like my bro AI says: Practice? we talking about practice! come on man! Practice!!
    PLAY 26 its the only way we can win!!

  7. I don’t think much of this. Portis seems to do this every time he gets frustrated. Remember him questioning whether or not he’d be a Skin in 2006? Calling out the O-Line earlier this season? Most of these things end up getting forgotten, and this will pass as well.

  8. For what it’s worth, there are people I’ve talked to here who don’t agree with my low-key assessment of the broadcast. Listening to the interview live, I just didn’t think it was quite the big deal that (apparently) everyone else on the internet does.

  9. The LaCanfora blog does in fact exist although he seems to be the polar opposite of the ‘company’ spin. By which I mean he spends a lot of time trying to stir up these kind of problems, even making calls to the league concerning Cerrato. This will play out ok. Everyone, (myself included) got real excited when it was 4-1 beating Dallas and Phily back to back. We must remember however, this is his FIRST year as not only our head coach but as a head coach period. He will have problems and controversys.

  10. Portis is a punk. The coach put in a player that he thought would give the team a better chance to win and Portis complains about it. He comes off being very selfish, not a team player, and nowhere near the team leader he should be at this point in his career.

  11. Hearing it live is one thing. just reading the text can be misleading. But from reading it it sounds pretty bad.

  12. Teri. Did you catch the whole interview? What was your interpretation? Evidently you are the only individual in the D.C. area to NOT think this is a huge deal. I had my friends,brothers who do not root for the Redskins call me up and ask if I was listening. Get your head out of your @!#!!

  13. Look on the bright side. The last time Portis went off on the radio we started winning.

  14. My interpretation was, as noted above, that Portis is angry and frustrated and disappointed. I would have been shocked if he felt any other way.

    (Also, just FYI, it’s an L at the end of my name, not an I.)

  15. My bad

  16. No worries.

  17. Who’s the 3rd new player on the active roster? I’m only counting 2 but sounds like 3 spots got opened. thanks

  18. Don’t like it when my team starts falling apart, but I LOVE Clinton’s quote on Jansen. It’s good to know that someone else see’s that he is washed up. No idea why Zorn stuck with him so long. Put the young guys in there – can’t be any worse.

    Just for the record, JANSEN was a great Redskin. I thank him for everything! But his time has passed.

    HAIL!

  19. The question is now can they work together after what was said to the media, and NOT each other face to face? Both just got a NEW contract.

  20. Good question — I’m not sure yet. I’m assuming there’s someone who hasn’t been officially signed or hasn’t passed a physical or something. I’ll let you know as soon as I find out.

  21. The funny thing is they are thinking about playing Jansen this weekend with one leg. WHAT FREAKING HEALTHY TACKLE CAN NOT BEAT OUT JANSEN ON ONE LEG???????????????

  22. ok folks, portis is what, a six year pro? proven his metal in everyway you. why the hell should he bust his ass playing hurt etc. for a team that can’t hardly execute a pop warner offense, much less the so called west coast offense of zorn’s. if i was portis, i would say i was hurt go on ir and let bettes and cartwright have it. if portis gets hurt, you think the skins will give a good rats as about him or his future, come on people its Da NFL, The team concept is all bs, its all about the bucks now, and what can you do for me now, not what have u done for me. get a grip ya’ll,hey portishang them cleats up this year, zorn won’t win another game this year

  23. He should bust his ass because HE SIGN THE CONTACT SAYING HE WOULD. If he go on IR he won’t get all his pay. If he lead the league in yards then he get bonuses. I think Zorn press a button though. Portis said he is healthy and will practice now. Zorn won this round. Zorn did something Bill Parcels would have done. RUN HARD CLINT!

  24. When I found out about this i was kind of sad and anxious. I read around the internet to find out what is happening and was reading the quotes from Coach and Portis, when I suddenly realized the crux of the issue. It is quite simple matter of fact.

    It’s all about “blocking assignments”.

    Zorn wants him to stick to his assignments. But he also wants him to help out the protection based on how the play unfolds, how others are doing/not doing their assignments. In essence is conflicting.

    Portis understands this and tries to do it, the best he can.

    Now what Zorn wants and what Portis does, will not always work out. Add to that the injuries and losing.

    I agree with Matt. It’s the frustation. But Zorn should learn and be clear about the “blocking assignments” he expects from Portis.

    Portis: We like you too much to put you on IR or not play. We treasure the games that made you an MVP candidate. Lets put this behind us and get some wins. Go Redskins !!!

  25. I still think JZ will be a good coach, its a learning process. I also think Portis will tear up the Bengals for 150+ yds. Andy Reid benched McNabb and he came back and lit up AZ. Sometimes we all need to be reminded of our roles. Portis was frustrated and Zorn saw the game was basically lost so why injure him more, rest and motivate Portis for the last few games. The redskins do need to get some O-line & D-line players to be serious contenders next year and in the future.

  26. Good one Dennis, I agree

  27. I saw that game every good team plays its best players, the ravens basically tee-ed off on campbell because they knew we didn’t have any threat of a run game..Portis is a throwback running back and since he came to Washington we have not known how to use him right

  28. Did anybody see the Monday Night Football game. The Panthers has two today running backs, and our best back is a throwback running back. We need to catch up.

  29. ole line sucks. loosing faith in Zorn so fast its ridiculous. I think Zorn and blache need to be ousted. Yes I know constant personnel changes arent helping us become a cohesive unit. But does anyone see that Zorn, smith and blache come out with same gameplan every week and get blasted by real coaches. Gibbs could take his team and beat yours or he’d take yours and beat his . That’s coaching. developing a gameplan that suits the strentgh of your team. I remember last years run, And all I have to say to my fellow redskins; Dont get your hopes up! Matt u know were rotting from the inside out. i wonder how many times the geniuses(zorn blache and danny smith have been yelled at by their own players this week. I know u wont tell me but i know its happening! i know football. its about 2 be a rift between zorn and portis that will end up with one of them out the door! same thing on the defensive side, One of our corners is complaining if not two. And it wont be the players leaving. The players that are giving it their all, they’re the ones that’s sick of it, they’re staring to voice their opinion because they’ve seen it done right,(gibbs williams) . Its not the check thieves(springs taylor jansen). those players are gonna ride it out till the checks dry up. but in a few weeks ill be saying i told u so! HTTR!

  30. Can you say, Redskins Head Coach Bill Cowher?

  31. BBLB-its not the coaches missing blocks, missing tackles dropping interceptions, not trying to strip the ball when the opposing running back is stood up, wr running 5 yd routes when you need 7, there are alot of issues. Maybe the coaches aren’t teaching this, I dont know. New coaches every year doesn’t help, Joe Gibbs brought stability the first time since DS owned the team, maybe he taught the owner to be patient. The coaches know what to do, they just need the personnel and a little more time. Could be worse~we could be Detroit!

  32. I understand but our owner is gonna side with his stars and Zorn is not a star. If any one else on offense came out like portis and talked like that I,d be like cut him. But no one plays harder or eaRns his money like cp. PS detriot didnt happen overnight. just like this has slowly metriculated into a problem. and maybe Firing Zorn and bache will keep it from hAPPENING. jOE GIBBS BROUGHT STABILITY AND SENIORITY. WE COULD KEEP zORN 8 YEARS AND IF PLAYERS DONT RESPECT HIM WE WILL NOT WIN. i DNT WANT TO DO IT. BUT WE MIGHT HAVE TO THROW THE BABY AND THE BATHWATER OUT 1 MORE TIME.

  33. Matt-
    I think sometimes (lots of times) first impressions are incorrect. Honestly I didn’t think it sounded that bad either until I started re-reading the transcript of what was said.

    So it might be a mistake to now, several hours after the fact, still cling to the impression you initially had in the car. It was pretty daming stuff.

    Anyways- great job on the blog as always- keep up the great work man.

  34. dENNIS- UNTIL 2 WEEKS AGO I WAS NOT THE SKY-IS FALLING -FIRE AND BRIMESTONE REDSKINS FAN. i WAS PRETTY CONFIDENT. bUT I C A COACH WHO IS YET TO TAKE ANY BLAME ON HIS SHOULDERS WHILE OUR TEAM CAN’T EXECUTE BASIC PLAYS. I DONT SEE ANY PROGRESSION OF SCHEME AND i DEFINITELY HAVENT SEEN ANY OFFENSIVE IMAGINATION. IM FROM MISSISSIPPI. AND I WANT JASON 2 SUCCEED.BUT HE’LL PROBABLY GET WORSE CAUSE IF OUR LEADER ON OFFENSE(CP) IS THE ONLY THING BETWEEN JASON AND A D-LINEMAN. AND HES SAYING ZORN HASNT CLARIFIED IF HE SHOULD BLOCK OR GO OUT. JASON’S GONNA THINK ABOUT THAT WHILE GETTING UP OFF HIS BAACK AND IT’LL MAKE HIM CHEAT ON HIS READS AND NOT TRUST WHAT HE SEES. AND NEXT THIG U KNOW WELL BE STARING AT THE BLACK HEATH SHULER.httr

  35. Well, Portis ripping Z is a big deal. And Z giving an interview in reply is even worse. I haven’t posted here in months. After the Rams loss I decided to chill on my expectations and just enjoy the year without my typical super fan zeal. Good call, actually, it’s kept me sane in the slide from 6-2 to where we are now. But this merits me getting back in the game. Portis is the franchise star right now. He’s a prima donna, and odd, but that’s part of what makes him special. And he is an all time Redskin great. More than that – he has carried a pathetic offense this year. And I bet you Gibbs heard the same guff from him.

    Here is the problem from my perch – Portis was just following Zorn’s lead. Zorn talks too much in press conferences. He should never call out players. I thought that back months ago when in one of his first press conferences he critiqued Rabach as too low in his stance from watching film. That’s not good public fodder because it’s critical of a player – same goes for calling out the rooks and so on. You want your boss giving negative reviews of your performance to the public?

    Zorn needs to mature – and fast. Or the locker room will implode. Remember how Gibbs handled the negative espn article about Greg Williams as reported by a player? It was Defcon 4. Or how he never said anything about Lavar when Lavar went prima donna while never getting on board with the game plan? Gibbs is a winner in all walks of life. Take a lesson from him. The press isn’t an ally in the nfl. Answer questions with economy, praise for what’s good, apology and self sacrifice for what’s wrong, and save your critical comments for the locker room. Never, ever talk down a player, even a loser like Brandon Lloyd, in the press. Gibbs never did. Because if you air your dirt in the press you have no ground to hold CP to a different standard.

    Well . . . enough with the soap box. 13 games in and the wheels are coming off. Typical Snyder built team. Reminds me of the not so distant Spurrier, Marty, Turner era. Coach Gibbs – I appreciate you even more! Coach Zorn – get your junk together. You’re the boss. Act like it.

  36. Don’t get me wrong I love watching CP play!
    I just listened to the John Thompson Show interview . CP needs to get over himself and let the coach coach! In the interview he kept saying that he guarantees that he’s not making any mistakes in the games that he dose everything right when he’s on the field. I would have to disagree with him on that one. If the coach thinks that a different player might give the TEAM a better chance to win be a team player and back up that choice! We have more than one RB on the team getting paid to play so lets get them in the game. That whole IR thing was stupid to say and immature. Mature people know how to deal with frustration when it comes up.

  37. Well, for me I don’t think it a big deal. That is sort of the point having players deal with the media. Chris Cooley gets on Elliot in the Morning, and gripes about his role or not getting used as much. But by the end he basically backs it up with a but as long as we are winning. So a weekly role on a radio talkshow is either asking for trouble or something like this is bound to happen if the team is in a slump. Obviously, watching our games and seeing our offense struggle the way it has I like Mr. Terl here would be shocked if Portis wasn’t a bit put off, about being benched and frustrated. While, in light of this I imagine he and Zorn will have a heart to heart….least i would think so, I really don’t see it as a big deal either. For one, these issues will be addressed now. So, that is a plus. If, portis didn’t feel he had an open door policy and redskins front office wants our guys doing PR stuff, gotta take the good with the bad, and portis has always been pretty honest where he stands, and with his debates with Brian Mitchell the man has pride, as he displays on the field. Maybe to a fault, but I don’t see that so much. To me it his way of giving the powers that be a swift kick in the nuts.

  38. Gnome….hit it the head. I remember after Colt’s outstanding play in his NFL debut in the HOF game, Zone was negative “Colt better not be swaggering his stuff”

    I found that very odd, not to praise a young man who loves the game, who went through hell since the sugar bowl, senior bowl and draft stock. Just didn;t seem consistent with his near perfect performance. He even went on to point out risky plays…

    my first thought was “F” that!!! Go Colt!!!

  39. Dennis:

    I like your confidence and faith in Coach Z but it’s blind faith. His excuse every week is “If we executed it properly it would have worked”. Yeah – of course. The rpoblem is he’s putting a game plan together that his players can not execute in a game. Practice maybe, but not in a game. You need to give your players plays that they can EXECUTE, not just TRY TO EXECUTE. A good coach plays to his players strengths. Coach Z is game planning in a direction that does not appear to be coinciding with the players strengths. That is evidenced by the constant sakcs of JC and LACK OF SACKS by the SKINS. There is no way to they will succeed when he lets that continue WEEK IN and WEEK OUT! As they say in poker – ya gotta SWITCH GEARS once in awhile. It’s time for us to switch.

    HAIL!

  40. The truth of the matter is the O-line sucks now and Portis is getting the holes. Zorn sees CP’s attitide and benches him (not to mention that he is hurt and may need the rest). If a guy practices all week and doesnt play is that fair? Betts should play. There is no premadonnas. Zorn is the coach he wont take the attitude and we should be thankful for that. CP needs to know his place and chill.

  41. The gameplan was working when we were 6-2. Geez, everybody is getting all worked up. I think Z is a good coach. This roster isnt much different from the past few years when Gibbs was the coach, and what success did you see then? About the same success you see now, so give it a rest and quit freaking out, Gibbs didnt do anything with this team this past time, so why do you think a rookie coach should do that much difference, the offense has the problem for 20 years haha nothing new people get off of zorn

  42. They better beat the bengals. The only thing I’m worried about is some guys on the Bengals auditioning for BIG CONTRACT DAN. I’m sure the “me” guys will bring their A-game.

  43. Portis is trying to fire up himself and the team. He’s done this a bunch in the past.

    I look for a huge game out of him this week.

  44. I was not upset at zorn for not putting portis in the game. Let him get healty. That ravens defense is good. I think zorn would have put portis in if we would have gotten the ball back and only down 7. Good call zorn, and yea portis should be mad because he always wants to go to war with his teamates. Gotta love him for that. Wow i think we cut the wrong de. We need to do something about the starting de. 4 sacks combined. Thats not good at all. Whats up with fred davis. Is he not up to speed yet or what. I like the fact that we are trying to get the ball to kelly and thomas but fred davis is getting a free check. Come on get all the young guns on the field. Sellars can really beat up a defense and i like the way we use him. Well with samuels done and janen on his way out cause he only was starting when heyer got hurt. So campbell yea everyone has been throwing you under the bus but this week you and your line get to prove people wrong. The bengals are one of 3 teams in the nfl with less sacks then the redskins. I still cant belive the lions have more sacks then us wow. Portis needs to get his carrys early and we need to jump on the bengals early so maybe portis doesnt have to have that many carrys and be well rested for the eagles. Cause if the giants and tampa are mad about thier loses this past weekend and beat dallas and atlanta then we control if we want to go to the playoffs.

  45. Goskins,
    I agree with you 100%! GO COLT! HTTR!

  46. i KINDA LIKED THE ZONE WE RAN AGAINST THE RAVENS BUT WE SHOULD HAVE BLITZ MORE OUT OF IT. JASON TAYLOR ALL REDSKINS FANS HAVE BEEN THROWING YOU UNDER THE BUS HARD ALL YEAR LONG BUT WITH GOOD REASON. WE GOT YOU FOR 3RD AND LONG AND YOU HAVENT DID ANYTHING. WE HAVE PUT ALOT OF TEAMS IN 3RD AND LONG AND YOU ONLY HAVE ONE SACK ALL YEAR. WOW NOT GOOD. YOU HAVE A CHANCE THIS WEEK TO SO REDSKINS FANS YOU HAVE SOME LIFE LEFT. BIG GAME THIS WEEK GUYS CAN WE SACK THE QB AND PROTECT CAMPBELL.

  47. I listened to it, its not anywhere near as bad as some poeple here are making it out to be. I haven’t read any other sites and I really don’t want to. Everyone, PLEASE, do us all and your team a favor and calm down.

  48. CJ:
    I didn’t freak out after the loss to the Steelers. I kept the faith after freezin’ my A$$ off at the Dallas game. I held it together after the loss to the Giants. But after watching the offensive effort against the Ravens (or should I say LACK OF AN OFFENSIVE EFFORT)……yeah I’m freakin’ out. If I was any more patient I might wake up one day and realize that I’m a Detroit Lion fan. No thanks! C’mon SKINS!!! REDSKINS NATION expects and deserves more!! HAIL!!!

  49. Guys i am sorry i would like to point a few things out. #1 The redskins are my team and i am proud to be a redskin fan….. but things needs to be addressed… if you noticed the is no fire as of late. i feel it starts with some game planing, leadership on and off the field and too many big contracts, and media

    Portis got paid big money to come to the redskins not to be a role player it was to be the “man” on the redskins team. and i tell you what he is more than 65% of the offense so i dont care what he feels… someone needs to take Z off this head coach pedistal because it isnt working as of late.
    Ravens, Steelers, Dallas, Eagles, Giants all bring heavy blitz remember earlier in the season we saw that we couldnt handle the blitz so we moved to shotgun and no huddle which JC performed exceptional out of. if we notice things of that sort we can make changes and cater to them to help our team
    i feel Z talks to the media too much about what the redskins want to do…. i feel like what changes he has made to JC’s game is for the redskins we as fans arent supposed to know that only see it. rookies being hurt or route running doesnt need to be broadcasts and the reason i say y is because although its great for fans to know… all the teams we play have access to this as well! strategy!!!
    Leadership i have a long list of players that should be cut after the season. betts(hasnt done anything since clinton went down back in 06 why are you getting a check), springs (never here in offseason and not present during season), thrash(waste of a roster spot at wide receiver doesnt catch and taking plays and experience from great young players and rookies) randel el( too small not really productive as wide reciever or return man) jansen (cant block) marcus washington( no call no show since 2005 campaign) todd collins (he’s almost 50 and if JC took a while to run this offense good how will he ever since saunders isnt here) yoder(y have him when we have fred davis) plackemeier (we were better off with the rookie brooks and before that with frost)

    i am proud to see mike sellers step it up. but feel many changes need to be made. our #2 back should be cartwright and if we were not using devin thomas on offense at the beginning of the season as much y wasnt he helping on special teams returning kicks?

  50. also did anyone see that NOT ONLY THE O-LINE, BUT NOBODY BLOCKED, RB’S, FB’S, TE’S! once Portis was out of the game JC was left to the dogs i am calling for an adjustment against the blitz to no huddle and shotgun… i dont care if we are up 14 points which would be hard to see happening rite now

  51. Bad Bad Leroy Brown is exactly right…..Zorn lost the locker room. We lost everything Gibbs put together….all the chemistry. And I don’t think Zorn acts medium….he throws tantrums on the sidelines. Seems confused as hell and I hope he runs away like Spurrier. I hope and pray that Gregg Williams comes back to coach. If not…..I think it’s time for Mr. Snyder to go ahead and coach the team cause nobody is meeting his expectations. Owner/Coach Snyder will take us to the Superbowl! I’m not being 100% serious so don’t give me heat for this.

  52. where am i????
    I thought this was the Redskins blog…

    ES is another click away…

    nahnahnah…. venting helps sometimes. Then we have to move on and get the next W.

    Exploding egos lead to imploding teams… sigh…

  53. Hey Matt,
    Don’t let anyone give you a hard time for not adding anything in your posts about JLC. He hasn’t existed in my world for a long time and I’m honestly better off for it.

    I was actually wondering, from watching Portis the last couple of weeks, if he wasn’t hurting the team by playing injured. He just didn’t seem to be running as hard or as quick.

    Hopefully we see 100+ this week from him.

    Oh, and great job man.

  54. I think Coach Zorn did the right thing.

  55. Portis is one of the main reasons this team is on a downword spiral. He’s got a bad attitude towards this coaghing staff and he need to go. Gibbs would have never put up with one of his player taking bad about him or the team and Zorn need to grow some balls and bemch him this week. the playoffs are out of reach now so this is the time to work on getting better at executing the plays so next year we can compete. I’d also like to see us draft a RB in the first round next year and trade or cut Portis.

  56. The Redskins need to address all these internal issues. Portis is a cancer, and also is on the downward spiral of his career. He is young but, he has rushed for 8000 yards, that’s a lot of miles. He doesn’t have the speed to take it to the house anymore. We need a young back. It’s time for them to rebuild, starting with the offensive line. I read that they are starting Fabini at tackle this week? You know you don’t draft well when that happens. I have faith in Zorn, and I figure he’s probably getting tired of all of the individualism on this team.. You can’t win with premaddonas, Portis, Washington, Randle El, Taylor. I’d cut: Jansen, Kendall, Taylor, Cartwright, Thrash, Fabini, Griffin, Springs, Smoooot, JASON CAMPBELL, HE JUST DOESN’T HAVE IT….

  57. I am telling you guys: “COLT BRENNAN” is the answer of all dis DRAMA!!!!…. going on in the Redskins house. Colt is a leader he will bring Energy,Fire, and Passion to dis offense… Because for some reason every time i watch Jason Campbell in a game he looks so “SLOW” and does’nt have the energy and dat fire in his eyes just by the way he walks up to the line an runs that offense. Portis is speaking his mind when he mad just like how he called-out coach Gibbs. And Jim Zorn needs to put Colt#5 in the game and open up that offense…… unleash all the weapons # 89,82,47,11 and #12 and watch Colt Brennan ripped it up like Tom Brady!!!!!…… ALOHA TO ALL DEM REDSKINS FANS Choooooohoooo!!!!!!…..

  58. I think were all getting ahead of ourselves. Portis is still a good runningback and he had every right to be fustrated, not that it’s Zorn job to explain evrything to his players but he could’ve talked to Portis about it and not just ignore the situation. We do not have a passing game right now so to me it just doesn’t make sense to bench Portis. If you notice Zorn get’s very fustrated during games and I think that causes him to lash out on players that may not deserve it to make himself feel better.

    How come nobody put’s any blame on Zorn? after all he is rookie head coach and still has a lot to learn himself. It goes further than just calling plays you have to make the guy’s want to play and win for you which Gibbs was great at. ( not that Im comparing just making a point)

  59. I see no reason to believe that Zorn has “lost the locker room.” You haven’t heard any substantial grumblings from any of the other players. No rumors, no accusations. I think you’re just seeing CP blow off some steam, the guy is a team player and has no intention of trying to divide the locker room.

    Losing will do this to a team. If the Redskins had won CP would be saying “yeah I’m disappointed, but we got the win so coach knew what he was doing.” If this team can put together a few Ws it will go into the season on a good note and everyone will be… well, not happy, but happier than they are now.

    And to the last poster, JC (somehow) still gives us the best chance to win, but if Campbell can’t lead the team to a win over the BENGALS, maybe we should see if Colt is ready to play against the big boys. He’s not…but I’m still curious.

  60. The skins drafted colt. He is a bum. All skins picks except for Horton are garbage.

  61. I agree with Kbrown that Portis is still one of the best all around backs in the league but he wasn’t having to much success against the Ravens D. He also fumbled a touchdown into the hands of Ed Reed. I think that would merit a rest and an oppurtunity for another player.

    A previous posted noted that there seemed to be a lack of fire from the team and I think that is a contributing factor in the teams. It’s important to “stay medium” your 6-2 but when you drop four of five games someone needs to light a fire, and I think one was just lit.

  62. Plain and simple. You don’t score you don’t win. We have to find a way to score a damn TD. On both sides of the ball. Our DEF is good but cant get enough Turn overs….our OFF sucks. Putting in Colt wont prove anything JC is our man now and for the Future…..so lets lay off the pounding of Portis (we all know he is a blow hard TO cry baby when it comes to playing time) And focus on the last 3 games and maybe just maybe we will make the playoffs. And if not….well there is always the CAPS Go Caps Go>>>>

  63. I disagree with benching the best RB in the NFL ….but I have to admit, I don’t want Portis to be hurt for the rest of the season.

    Baltimore is tuff!!!! Portis would have ended up getting hurt because he is a physical player that would do anything for the extra two or three yards.

    I like Zorn, and I think he is STILL doing a great job. I’m not going to turn my back on him just because we lost a couple games. Joe Gibbs didn’t win every game that he ever coached.

    I must say before I go… We have to stop running up the middle every time. Thats nuts!

  64. TRADE CLINTON PORTIS FOR PICKS!!!

    TRADE CLINTON PORTIS FOR PICKS!!!

    TRADE CLINTON PORTIS FOR PICKS!!!

    RB’s are a dime a dozen. Clinton is great, but his trade value (and physical abilities) are at their peak.

  65. i dont think portis should of got benched cause he fumbled. I think he should of got benched cause of his health. We were down 14 and the offense wasnt doing much so yea let your star back sit and try and get all the way healthy. Remember hes been quesionable in the bye week. Now we face a weak bengals defense and i hope we get off to a fast start so he doesnt play much in that game. If atlanta loses to the bucs and dallas loses to the giants then we control what we want to do so that eagles game we are going to need a 100 percent portis so yes i agree zorn let him rest but you gotta love a guy who still wants to be at war with his teamates. The offensive line needs to earn its pay this week and beat up the bengals defense. The redskins only have 19 sacks on the year but the bengals are one of 3 teams that are doing worst so come on offensive line step up. Defensive line come on with the sacks please we should be able to put the bengals in third and long all day long so we need to have 6 or more sacks this game. Jason taylor needs to have 3 or more sacks to somewhat please us redskins fans

  66. WTF wHo said in this blog to cut Portis needs to o and jump off a bridge. ARE YOU KIDDING ME. YOU ARE TELLING THIS BLOG THAT WE SHOULD BENCH ONE OF THE BEST RBS IN THE NFL AND THE ONLY GOOD PLAYER ON THIS TEAM, WTF ARE YOU THINKING. THE GUY IS THE ONLY WARRIOR ON THIS TEAM THAT IS PUTTING HIS BUTT ON THE LINE FOR THIS TEAM BECAUSE HE CARES ABOUT WINNING. IF ANYONE NEEDS TO GO IT IS THE ENTIRE D-LINE AND O-LINE AS WELL AS CERATO. PORTIS IS UPSET BECAUSE HIS TEAM MATES AREN’T PERFORMING WITH THE SAME URGENCY AND I THINK HE IS TAKING IT OUT ON ZORN. I DON’T BLAME PORTIS FOR BEING PISSED OFF. I THINK THE PORTIS IS SENDING HIS TEAM MATES A MESSAGE THAT THEY ALL SUCK AND THAT THEY AREN’T PLAYING THEIR BEST AND I THINK HE HAS A LEGITIMATE POINT. I THINK HE IS TRYING TO GET HIS TEAM TO COME TO THEIR SENSES AND START PLAYING TOP KNOTCH FOOTBALL.
    AS MUCH AS IT’S SOUNDS DISRESPECTFUL TOWARDS THE REDSKINS, HE HAS A LEGITIMATE POINT. KNOW IF HE WAS ON THE SAME BOAT AND WAS NOT A CONTRIBUTOR TO THE LITTLE SUCCESS THIS TEAM HAD, THEN I DON’T THINK HE AHAS A RIGHT TO SPEAK. BUT BECAUSE THE GUY CARRIED THIS TEAM TO WHAT SUCCESS IT HAS, HE HAS EVERY RIGHT TO EXPRESS HIS ANGER BECAUSE HE IS PLAYING TO THE BEST OF HIS ABILITIES EVEN WITH THE INJURIES HE HAS SUFFERED AND WE HAVE OTHER PLAYERS AT A 100% THAT CAN’T FINISH A PLAY, THAT IS FRUSTRATING.

    FOR THOSE THAT THINK, PORTIS IS TO BLAME FOR THE DOWN SPIRAL OF THE REDSKINS, GO AND LEARN FOOTBALL. THE GUY HAS O-LINE THAT IS BEING OUTPLAYED BY EVERY DEFENSE IN THIS LEAGUE. I CAN SAY WE HAVE AN O-LINE WORSE THAN THE LIONS. HOW DO YOU EXPECT A RUNNING BACK TO PICK UP YARDS IF HIS LINE CAN’T BLOCK FOR HIM. A GOOD RUNNING BACK IS A RUNNING BACK THAT CAN RECOGNIZE AN OPENNING IN THE DEFENSE AND RUN THROUGH IT . THE REDSKINS O-LINE IS SO BAD THEY CAN’T EVEN BLOCK FOR HIS RUNNING BACK AND CREATE HOLES. ALSO, THE GUY IS SUFFERING FROM A SLUE OF INJURIES HOW THE HELL DO EXPECT HIM TO GAIN YARDS IF HE IS HURT AND HIS O-LINE CAN’T PERFORM. I BLAME THE DOWN FALL ON THE O-LINE AND THEIR INABILITY TO PROTECT PORTIS AND JC FROM GOOD DEFENSES, LIKE THE RAVENS. AT THIS POINT WE HAVE NEITHER A RNNING GAME NOR A PASSING GAME BECAUSE OUR O-LINE SUCKS.

  67. I love your blog Matt. Best line in the whole article has to be “Besides, the last time Clinton Portis got involved in a radio fracas, he followed it not long after with some of the best running of his recent career. If that happens again, the team will be actively encouraging him to call in and insult people”. This had me laughing so hard at work.

    About the steam blowing out of CP’s ears (and mouth), this is normal sports radio talk. This happens in all sports, there is always a person dissatisfied with team progress or their role. Doesn’t matter if you are winning or losing. Since Zorn didnt take this talk as a big deal then neither should we. This is good stuff though cause it makes the whole team look at their performance cause they dont want CP to insult them the next time he gets on air. I expect a good showing from the Redskins vs Bengals next game with the new line and CP’s steam

  68. why would we trade the only person on the offense that is really doing anything. True moss getts doubled alot and cooley alse but portis has been an mvp type player this year and some redskins fans want him gone, are yall crazy. The man was hurt and was mad that his coach didnt let him play in the second half. Wow yall are acting like he did something crazy on the sidelines. No he was benched and a day later someone on the radio asked him how he felt, what the man cant have feelings. Come on portis is a warrior. If you dont like what he says in the media then as a team we shouldnt take to the media. Hes not the problem. I mean isnt he the 3rd leading rusher and plays hurt. Hurt and all he still wants to play against the top ranked defenses. If anyone should be thrown under the bus its jason taylor. 9.5 million and 1 sack. Need i say more.

  69. THANK YOU RICHARD FOR BACKING MY POINT, I WENT OFF ON THESE IDIOTS WHO SAID THAT THEY WANT TO TRADE PORTIS.

  70. Portis is right. Zorn needs to realize what he has at his disposal. Coaches would kill for a player that sells out on blocks, and will play hurt. Too bad springs cant take a page out of that book.

  71. It is time to just fire Zorn already. Sure, it was a nice story a few weeks ago when they weren’t playing like ****, but now? The head coaches main job is to have players play hard. That is precisely what the Redskins NEVER DO. Lazy ass game after lazy ass game. Bad play calling, bad players or confusion from a new system, all of that is workable. Not playing at even 50% speed, time for a new coach.

  72. “why would we trade the only person on the offense that is really doing anything. True moss getts doubled alot and cooley alse but portis has been an mvp type player this year and some redskins fans want him gone, are yall crazy. The man was hurt and was mad that his coach didnt let him play in the second half. Wow yall are acting like he did something crazy on the sidelines. No he was benched and a day later someone on the radio asked him how he felt, what the man cant have feelings. Come on portis is a warrior. If you dont like what he says in the media then as a team we shouldnt take to the media. Hes not the problem. I mean isnt he the 3rd leading rusher and plays hurt. Hurt and all he still wants to play against the top ranked defenses. If anyone should be thrown under the bus its jason taylor. 9.5 million and 1 sack. Need i say more.”

    Dear Chris and Richard,

    IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH PORTIS AS A PLAYER. He’s great.

    BUT!

    REMEMBER EDGERRIN JAMES?!?!

    Check out his stats for the year Bill Polian let him go:

    15 games started
    1,506 yards
    4.2 average
    13 rushing TDs
    337 receiving yards and 1 TD

    Bill Polian – the BEST GM in the NFL understands that RBs are a DIME A DOZEN.

    Read what they wrote about James that year- sound familiar?!

    “Not only is James a superb rusher, but he also is an accomplished receiver. And one of the strongest elements of his game, although often overlooked, is his terrific ability to pass protect. In the Indianapolis offense, James was often called on to pick up the odd man on the pass rush.

    James has carried 2,188 times for 9,226 yards and 64 touchdowns and is the leading rusher in Colts history. He also has 356 receptions for 2,839 yards and 11 touchdowns.”

    Now, Try to think like a business man for a few seconds and not blind fans!

    The Redskins need help. Imagine you’re the GM and the team that you work for has been building through free agency for the last 10 years bringing in over-paid, over-rated, and old talent on both sides of the ball.

    -The offensive and defensive lines are littered with old and often injured players. (This is the second year in a row that we have to “re-shuffle” the O line)

    -Your (very talented) middle linebacker is on the wrong side of 30.

    – You have a young QB that is getting sacked more often than anyone else in the NFL.

    – Your latest off-season blunder was paying a 34 year old guy $8million for 1 sack.

    – One of your starting CBs (Springs) is always hurt.

    – Your alleged #1 receiver has not scored a TD since week 8.

    – Your pro-bowl TE is not getting involved enough because he has to help in pass protection.

    – Your linebacker corps is thin

    – Your team is near last in the league in sacks.

    —————

    Why wouldn’t you trade Portis for as many draft picks as you can get?

  73. I guess from a business standpoint you are right. However, this is a complete different issue. From a business standpoint and as well as football standpoint, Vinnie sucks as a GM. From the business standpoint, he has signed players that have been overpaid and have underachieved and he has always done that. He has signed well known players for loads of money that only look good on paper and have not performed. Form a football standpoint, Vinnie doesn’t know how to draft players. The last time we drafted offesnive lineman was in 1999-2000.
    I think even if we did trade Portis and get a load of picks for him, I don’t think they would go to good use because the Redskins management sucks. However, I think that the redskins should not trade him because he is the franchise of this team. If this organization is going to have any success, it will be built around Portis.

  74. That’s the very issue that Vinny doesn’t understand:

    WHAT DO YOU BUILD YOUR TEAM AROUND?

    – QB? (Look at the Texans)

    – RB? (Look at KC & the Skins)

    – WR? (Look at Detriot)

    Offensive and/or Defensive lines?
    – Dallas
    – NY Giants
    – Pittsburgh
    – New England
    – Tennessee

    See a pattern?

  75. The things that the Redskins need to do to succeed are very simple.

    1.) Jason Campbell is trade bait on draft day for a first round pick. He has value, he’s a good quarterback, he’s just not what the Redskins need. Detroit doesn’t want to spend #1 pick $$$. But Snyder will. Now make an investment for the future, not the now.

    2.) Draft D-Linemen. Some freak on the end and size up front- I can’t stand to see a lack of pass rush because we don’t have the size, strength and speed to close the pocket. It’s no coincidence that so many impact players come from The U.

    3.) Release: Yoder, Rabach, Thrash, Washington, Springs, Betts, Cartright, Suisham(especially this guy.)

    4.) Pick up another RB in the draft, we need a two headed monster in the backfield. Speed. Felix Jones quickness.

    5.) Start Colt Brennan. He was the spark in the preseason this anemic offense needed and he has the killer instinct it takes to pull the trigger. Right now Campbell is playing like he is afraid to lose. We are slowly dying. We need someone who can respond when a defense puts their team up 14-0 in the 1st quarter with a solid 70+ yard drive for a TD. We didn’t draft Colt as a backup, you can see this guy’s got the goods.

    6.) When he’s healthy let Chris Horton roam in the secondary and use Landry on more stunts and up in the box. He is an aggressive hitter, make him another threat to the offense.

    7.) Zorn is doing a decent job. But how easy are we making it for other teams when we go single back, double tight with two wideouts? How easy can this be defended? Give ourselves a serious chance to win. Stop throwing the ball on third down before the sticks. Use three wideouts, spread out the defense.

    8.) You can’t be afraid to lose, so stop playing that way. Send a safety blitz. Drop McIntosh into coverage, mix it up and make them react to us.

    9.) Work with these two players: Rocky McIntosh and Carlos Rogers. McIntosh has great vision, speed and aggressiveness. He just need 5-8 lbs more of hitting power so when he gets to the hole he can become a feared hitter. You never know what you’ll get out of Rogers. He can shutdown TO one week, but he can’t stop Dominek Hixon on 3rd downs the next. Something needs to be done, but you keep these two and work with them.

    10.) Play our rookies. I hate hearing John Madden say that Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly haven’t contributed. They haven’t been in the position to contribute. Get them reps on the field so they become the WRs in the NFL that we know they can be. Rinehart needs reps. And play Fred Davis. Why am I watching Todd Yoder when you have this beast on the sidelines? If he’s not ready to play, that’s the coaches fault. Not his. Get him out there on game day.

    Basically the Redskins need to use the weapons they have. Players like Brennan, Portis, Moss, Thomas, Kelly, Sellers, Samuels, Horton, Landry, McIntosh, Cooley, Fletcher and Deangelo Hall are what you build your team around. This is a great team, it’s just not being utilized for maximum production.

  76. IN my opinion Vinnie should have been fired a long time ago because he and his personel have brought down the team because of hsi dumb moves.

    HE THINKS HE IS PLAYING MADDEN AND HE IS RUNNING HIS TEAM

  77. Where would you put the colts and pats? or are they more exception to the rules? those types o qb’s are a rare breed? but they not have strongest o lines.

  78. VINNY’S ASS SHOULD BE KICKED OUT OF REDSKINS PARK! HE’S A MORON FOR A GM, WOULDN’T KNOW GOOD MANAGEMENT EVEN IF IT HITS HIS GIANT FOREHEAD!!!!

    Portis is just pissed! he needs help for crying out loud! he’s the only that knows how to block and score points and yet he was benched for fumbling once in the game (which i think was a stupid call anyway!). give the guy help at RB, Betts ain’t doing squat anymore, Cartwright is useless too.

    Jason Taylor, Springs, Washington, Rogers, All the oline, all the dline, that f**** stupid kicker, Yoder, Randle El, Thrash and Campbell, cut them all loose, revamp now! all that salary cap, we can get younger players through the draft and younger potentail free agents, and pls resign DeAngelo Hall, he’s the only one making plays in the secondary, Rogers is a waste of draft. I still think we should’ve really taken Shawn Merriman or Demarcus Ware, we had the chance!!!!

    Coach Zorn, concentrate on developing Colt! leave the play calling to your off coordinators jeeezzzz!!!

  79. I am glad they made up. But Zorn has to realize who is his bread and butter and stop thinking we are winning on his “genius” alone. Its been Portis making critical first downs and wearing out defenses and taking pressure off of Campbell. I am wondering if anyone saw First Take on ESPN. Everyone I heard commenting on it was in Clinton’s corner. Clinton was the leading rusher in the NFL. He was the one who was helping us win our games. As soon as we went away from him. That’s when we started losing. It doesn’t take a “genius” to figure that out!! ZORN STEP YOUR GAME UP!!

  80. “Where would you put the colts and pats? or are they more exception to the rules? those types o qb’s are a rare breed? but they not have strongest o lines.”

    Payton Manning and Tom Brady are not only hall of fame QB’s, but look at the arsenal of weapons at their disposal.

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