It’s become fairly obvious that Washington’s Jim Zorn isn’t going to survive the season. Everyone has been speculating on who will replace the embattled Redskins head coach. Now we may have a few more clues.
Earlier this week the Redskins hired Sherman Lewis to act as an offensive consultant to help straighten out the team’s woes on that side of the ball. Lewis is a former offensive coordinator for the Packers (1992-99), Vikings (2000-01) and Lions (2003-04). When Zorn was asked how much he’d talked to Lewis before he was brought in, Zorn told the Washington Post, “Zero.”
Obviously if Zorn was in the team’s future plans, he would have been a part of any discussion of adding additional coaches to his staff. While Lewis won’t be taking anyone’s job, the move to bring him in shows a lack of confidence in the Zorn regime.
While that’s an interesting twist, the big news is that it looks increasingly likely that Mike Shanahan will be Zorn’s replacement. Rotund ESPN NFL insider, Len Pasquarelli is reporting that Shanahan and Redskins vice president for football operations, Vinny Cerrato, have a good relationship based on their time together with the San Francisco 49ers in the ’90s.
Cerrato wields considerable power in the Redskins front office, a fact that might scare away potential head coaching candidates. Shanahan would probably not share those reservations because of his previous relationship with Cerrato. Pasquarelli thinks the two might actually work well together.
The real question is whether or not Shanahan would want to work under Redskins owner Daniel Snyder. Frankly, if Snyder backed a Brinks truck onto Shanahan’s lawn, he’d probably have to take the deal. Snyder has never been shy about taking risks or spending money, so I don’t think that would be a problem.
While some have speculated that Mike Holmgren could be next in Washington, I seriously doubt it. Holmgren likes being in control of his roster or at least having input into personnel decisions. With Cerrato and Snyder in charge that ain’t gonna happen.
So what can Skins fans expect if, in fact, Shanahan is next in line? Be prepared for a winning pedigree, offensive consistency, emotionless press conferences and lots of illegal blocking from the offensive line. Also, be prepared for the rest of the league to hate you for the aforementioned illegal blocking from the offensive line.
Oh and don’t expect playoff success unless John Elway comes out of retirement.