Peter King Looks At The Bright Side

Posted by Matt Terl on December 15, 2008 – 5:20 pm


Not a lot favorable to take away from yesterday’s game, obviously. Any individual achievements tended to be immediately marred by dumb penalties (Santana Moss) or overturned by replay (Mike Sellers). I suppose Ryan Plackemeier had a fairly good game, which is nice, and Rock Cartwright acquitted himself well. I liked seeing Kareem Moore lay out Chad Ocho Seenco, I guess.

On the whole, though, it was the kind of day where I don’t think I would’ve, say, encouraged people to vote Redskins players into the Pro Bowl.

Peter King, however, apparently has no such qualms. Buried in the “10 Things I Think I Think” segment of his Monday Morning Quarterback column is this bizarre observation:

I think Clinton Portis is going to be in front of us one day for Hall of Fame consideration. Two games shy of seven full seasons, and he’s already past 9,000 yards. He’s 27 years old. Can he muster 4,000 more yards? I’d think he will. If so, he’ll be in Eric Dickerson territory.

Portis is an excellent running back, no doubt. A blurb like this might have made some kind of sense when he was being discussed as a potential MVP candidate earlier in the season, or at least after a particularly strong game. But yesterday he rushed 25 times for 77 yards – a 3.1 yards per carry average – and that came on the heels of a week in which he got involved in that awkwardness with his head coach, no less.

Still, if you’ve been searching around for some positive Redskins news on this bleak day, there you go: Peter King thinks Portis has at least an outside shot at eventual Hall of Fame consideration. Yay.

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Zorn Evaluates Zorn

Posted by Matt Terl on December 15, 2008 – 2:19 pm

zornpressconf01There was a noticeably different tone to Coach Zorn’s press conference today, a change that actually addresses some of the most common concerns about his approach during this second half of the season. There was little (if any) discussion of execution, of specific mistakes made by players, of plays that had gone wrong.

What we saw instead was a coach who seems to have fully accepted that something in his approach might need to change as well, and it was interesting to see Zorn’s blunt frankness trained on himself.

(And, I was excited to hear, one who is even willing to consider deferring the decision if he wins the coin toss.)

Here’s a fairly long transcription of the bulk of the press conference – the questions, as always, come from the assembled media members, and they’re not transcribed precisely because the microphone on my recorder doesn’t pick them up, but I’ve tried to give a sense of what the question was as best as I can remember it.

Is this situation challenging to your naturally optimistic personality?

“I’m not sure I could ask any more of the players. I just keep asking them to give more and more, and they’ve really given so much. I think at the beginning of the season we asked a lot of them, and they responded well, and I think these last six games, I think that we’ve asked a lot of them, and they’ve responded well.

“I really feel like – even before this juncture, but certainly now, I’ve got to look at myself.

“That’s one of the reasons why I gave the players an opportunity to stay away [today]. To me it’s all about me, and I need to check my plan of attack and all of our staff, we need to reevaluate what we’re doing to see if we’re going in the right direction. I really believe we’re building a good foundation, but certainly when these things get strung across the board I certainly have to take, and I do take the responsibility for some of these games just not turning out like we had planned.”

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Monday, December 15: A Five Minute Diversion

Posted by Matt Terl on December 15, 2008 – 9:45 am

Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Well, as usual on Monday mornings, it’s quiet at the Park so far – quieter than usual, actually, as every single person I’ve bumped into has been morbidly grim after yesterday’s loss.

I’ll have updates over the course of the day – Coach Zorn’s press conference, of course, and any players who come in despite the day off – but so far, I really have nothing new to give you beyond what we all saw. If you want to wallow in depressing postgame quotes, Dan Steinberg has you covered. If you’d like to move back to a more hopeful time, a time before 1:00 yesterday, and learn more (much more) about Clinton Portis, make sure you read Barry Svrluga’s insightful profile from Sunday’s Post. Rich Tandler and Hogs Haven both have thought-out, sad postgame musings, if that’s what you’re in the mood for.

Or you could amuse yourself with this YouTube video (warning: contains vulgar language) that ProFootballTalk posted. It’s a Cowboys fan heckling ESPN’s Ed Werder, and if you’ve ever felt like the media deliberately drums up controversy around your team, this guy does something you’ve probably always wanted to do. Yes, he’s a Cowboys fan, but in this case I think we’re all on the same side. If nothing else, it’s a good way to get your mind off this depressing Redskins slide for five minutes or so.

Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

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