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Edwin Williams Climbs The Ladder

Posted by Matt Terl on June 2, 2009 – 5:01 pm

If there is one sportswriting device that I’ve really grown to dislike over the years, it’s the extrapolation from the way a player performs one unrelated activity to the way he handles his sports career as a whole. Here’s a completely fabricated example of the kind of thing I’m talking about:

Brett Favre does not mow his lawn in neat rows like you or me or your next-door neighbor. No, he rides his mower in haphazard patterns, zig-zagging from one corner to the other, sometimes stopping for three days as if he’s done before changing mowers and starting again. It’s the way he mows his lawn, it’s the way he plays the game … and it’s the way he lives his life. It may look crazy to you, but as I sit behind Brett on this rumbling John Deere, it all starts to make a certain kind of sense.

That kind of thing. I find it contrived at best, insanely overwrought and pointless at worst.

And yet it’s all I could think of when I found undrafted rookie center Edwin Williams doing the rope ladder climb at Six Flags last night. The game is simple, like all good carnival games: climb the shaky rope ladder to the second-to-last rung, ring the bell, and win the big Redskins bear. And, like all good carnival games, the barker can do it again and again and again as if it’s the easiest thing on Earth, while the marks fail and fail again.

As with any failure, there are two ways to view it: each time, you’re a little closer to the time you’re going to succeed; or each time, it just goes to prove that the barkers know a trick that you don’t. Read more »

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On The Field For OTAs, Along With Steve Largent

Posted by Matt Terl on June 2, 2009 – 3:05 pm

Hot today, a sneaky, dry heat that made it obvious how early in the pre-preseason it really is — guys drenched in sweat despite the preceding weeks of conditioning. Still, better than the rain.

Clinton Portis was back at practice, as were Kevin Barnes and Carlos Rogers, and Mike Sellers as well, in his characteristic sleeveless practice jersey with Ultimate Warrior style armbands. All four guys seemed to be participating fully, and Barnes said afterward that he felt much better after missing yesterday with a fever.
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Tuesday, June 2: Redskins Go To Six Flags

Posted by Matt Terl on June 2, 2009 – 11:10 am

Last night, Redskins players and coaches — along with their familes, Redskins staffers, and premium seatholders — had the run of Six Flags. Doors were closed to the general public, lines were kept to a minimum, concession stands offered free samples of their wares, and a good time was had by all.

As you can imagine, it was a quiet, low-key kind of event. Here, for example, is Clinton Portis, walking through the park with a Six Flags security guard, a Six Flags guest attendant, and a rolling, constantly changing group of dozens of his close, personal friends (and autograph seekers).

(That’s Clinton in the hat and light blue shirt in the middle left of the photo — the one everyone else is facing. The security guard to the left of the photo is moments away from yelling at me for stopping directly in front of the caravan, which was about all she could do at this point.) Read more »

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