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2011 Draft Day Party Announced

Posted by Matt Terl on March 30, 2011 – 4:58 pm

I’ve gotten more than few inquiries about this, so here’s the answer: yes, there will be a draft day party this year, on Saturday, April 30, at FedExField. It’s always a good time, and this year promises to be no different — Redskins alumni, Coach Mike Shanahan at 5:30(ish), and more. The parking lots open at 11:00, and you can get your free invitation and much more information here. Read more »

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Steve Emtman With An Axe And A Redskins Helmet

Posted by Matt Terl on March 30, 2011 – 2:20 pm

It’s NFL Draft season, which means that it’s time to start trotting out the stories of classic draft busts. This is the time of year when guys like Ryan Leaf, Tony Mandarich, and, yes, even Heath Shuler get dragged out of storage, have the dust blown off, and have their depressing stories re-told yet again.

Which is fortunate for me, since otherwise I wouldn’t have an excuse for posting this inexplicable picture I came across while searching AP Photos for a shot of the Redskins 1992 Super Bowl parade. This is U. of Washington defensive lineman Steve Emtman, just a month or so before he became the number one overall pick for the Indianapolis Colts in the 1992 Draft, standing with an axe and a Redskins helmet. (Click to enlarge.)

The photo is particularly bizarre since Emtman wouldn’t join the Redskins until 1997, and even then only for four games at the end of the season (which also marked the end of his brief career).

There’s an explanation, of course: It’s a portrait for his NFL ProLine Profile card and the Redskins held the sixth overall pick in that draft, so Emtman posed with the helmets of teams who might acquire him. That idea was worked into a visual metaphor in a separate batch of pictures from the Pro Line shoot — you can see one of them after the jump where Emtman appears to be fishing for a team — but out of context here, it appears to be a large man brandishing an axe and stomping on a Redskins helmet. Still, that’s the kind of thing that happens during NFL Draft season.

(Click onward to see Emtman fishing for a team, if you like.) Read more »

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Phil Taylor And Value In The Draft

Posted by Matt Terl on March 30, 2011 – 12:03 pm

The second installment of our Writers Roundtable posted over at the big Redskins.com supercenter, and it finds Gary Fitzgerald, Larry Weisman, and I yet again discussing possibilities in the upcoming NFL Draft. This time around, the question starts with What should the Redskins do with the tenth pick? and ends up with me contemplating the abstract concept of value itself while the other two sort of gaze on in pitying horror.

The excerpt below features what wound up being, I think, my biggest question coming out of the conversation:

Here’s my question – and this is something I really wrestled with in my mock draft earlier this week, too – why not nose tackle Phil Taylor at No. 10?

I mean, if the team believes (as I do) that they need a nose tackle, and Taylor is (as Larry points out) the only nose tackle with a first-round grade … well, he might not suit someone ELSE at 10, but it seems like you’re filling a prime need with the best player at that spot. Maybe it’s a few spots higher than he’s “projected”, but … frankly, so what?

This kind of thinking has worked out in the past – Jacksonville taking Tyson Alualu at 10 last year; the Patriots taking Logan Mankins in the first round – so why not try it here?

As always in things like this, I’m feeling a little bit of esprit d’escalier about the discussion. (That’s a fancy-pants term for all the clever things you think of after the fact but didn’t say at the time.) Because both Weisman and Fitzgerald seem to agree that Baylor’s Taylor is a suitable pick for the Redskins, but there’s a lot of question about if he’s “worth” the 10th pick — and I don’t know that I successfuly explained why that idea of “worth” is meaningless here. So let me give it a shot now:

Read more »

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Cricket And The 1992 Super Bowl Celebration

Posted by Matt Terl on March 30, 2011 – 9:44 am

It’s a cricket kind of day, which is something I never really thought would happen here. I know that cricket is insanely popular globally; I know that as soon as the weather turns nice, kids from families of South Asian heritage start playing street cricket in my neighborhood; I know that cricket provided a nice backdrop to part of the closing triptych of Sports Night‘s first season. But that’s really about it, and I never expected to see the day that cricket dominated the front page of ESPN.com as it does for today’s India/Pakistan tilt.

Sure, it’s just a top story about cricket and the scoreboard up top defaulting to cricket, but — by cricket standards — that’s the equivalent of ESPN renaming itself cricketnet.com for the day. So, yes, this is an Important Cricket Match. And, like all capital-I Important sporting events, it was preceded by a few articles really pumping up it’s Importance.

Which is where the Redskins connection comes in. Read more »

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