Just a short couple hours into free agency, vintage Dan Snyder came out swinging. Who needs to hear good words from Obama or Bernanke to feel better about our economy? Obviously Mr. Snyder didn’t have his money invested with Bernard Madoff, and the Six Flags stock being in the shitter isn’t effecting him either.
By 9am this morning the Skins have inked 2 of the best free agents available. They’ve retained Deangelo Hall @ $55 million, and added the prize of free agency Albert Haynesworth for another $100 million. But, apparently they are not finished. “Fish on,” with Chris Canty, Ray Willis, and Derrick Dockery. As a fan, I’m excited as hell. Haynesworth is a beast. Hall is a difference maker. Dockery was our best offensive lineman 2 years ago. Canty and Willis would be definite upgrades.
So while I’m excited as a fan about the product that I will see on the field next fall, I’m not comfortable with the ethics of the organization. 40 employees at an average of 50k per year = 2 million. The teams salary cap for players is $127 million, which by smoke and mirrors the Skins will exceed. Add another 15-20 million for the coaching staff and front office. $155 million committed to just 2 players! It just doesn’t add up.
40 employees lives crushed, their spouses and children deeply effected. Is it all worth it? I think not. There is no grey area here, it’s black and white, there is a right and a wrong. And…it’s just wrong. If the Danny has any integrity he would pick up the phone and personally call the individuals he laid off. He should offer them their jobs back and apologize. But we all know that would never happen.
He’s at Morton’s wining and dining the next player, ordering off the menu, and dangling million$$ in their faces.
We are well into Spring Training now and there is still an amazing number of established MLB veterans who have something in common with me, we aren’t playing anywhere. The list of players reads like the decade of the 90′s all-star team. So, I’d like to invite them to join me to form the ultimate softball team.
Ladies and Gentleman, The HGH Bombers:
C – Ivan Rodriguez
1B – Richie Sexson
2B – Ray Durham
SS – Orlando Cabrera
3B – Nomar Garciapara
OF -Manny Ramirez
OF – Jim Edmonds
OF – Moises Alou
OF – Barry Bonds
DH – Frank Thomas
P – Curt Schilling
P – Kenny Rogers
P – Pedro Martinez
Sure these guys are well past their prime, but they still want to play and I’m amazed some team hasn’t taken a chance on them. If they can’t find a home, the offer stands.
The NFL Free Agency period starts this Friday @ 12:01AM. After sitting idling last year, speculation has Redskins One ready to roll this year. But if I’m the one calling the shots, that plane is never getting near Haynesworth. We have Golston(RFA) and Montgomery at DT, 2 players that are getting better and entering their primes. Griffin will be back as well. The defense was 8th in the league against the rush, so dropping 100 million on one player doesn’t make any sense. So, where am I spending the Redskins money? Take a look.
CB – Deangelo Hall
He played well last year and I think he would like to be back, and the Skins want him back. But at what price?
Backup option : Bryant Mcfadden
Don’t touch: Bly or Mcalister…keep Springs, he’s better.
OLB – Bart Scott
With the release of Marcus Washington the Skins have a hole here. HB Blades is a solid backup, but not an every down player.
Backup option: Moving Jason Taylor around more and utilizing his talents would make this signing unnecessary. Drafting Brian Orakpo is an option as well (though I don’t think he’s available without trading up.)
DE – Chris Canty
This is a big MF’er. 6’7″ 300lbs. He may not ever be a superstar, but a solid 8-10 sack guy. He went to VA, so he’d probably be interested in playing for DC.
Backup option: Demetric Evans
OT – Mark Tauscher
Oh man would Jordan Gross have been awesome or what? Tauscher is the best option available at a position that needs help. Quickly.
OG – Pete Kendall
Kendall has been a consistent player for the Skins the past couple years. He’s getting up their in years, but probably has 2 more seasons in him. I’d like to see him back.
Backup option: Mike Goff has been opening holes for Tomlison in SD for years and is a solid option if you can’t resign Kendall.
WR – Reggie Williams or Bryant Johnson
No big splash here, just a big bodied #3/4 WR that can catch an 8 yd slant on 3rd and 7.
Backup option: We can wait to see how Malcom Kelly turns out.
QB – Jeff Garcia Yes, Jeff Garcia. I can’t even believe I’m writing it down. But here’s the deal. By not already locking up Jason Campbell to an extension, the Skins are showing us that they no longer have confidence in him. You can’t have a lame duck QB. So bring in Garcia to push him. He’s a great west coast QB and he always finds a way to win games and make plays. Brennan can continue to develop behind the 2, and you’d have to cut Collins. Next year you can decide who your QB is, Colt or JC.
I’m anxious to see how things turn out over the next week or so. There will be wining and dining with the Danny, Redskin’s wives doubling as Real Estate agents, and recruiting from the players.
Hey, it’s the greatest time of the year to be a Skins fan!
Neal Olkewicz played 11 seasons with the Washington Redskins and became a fan favorite for his “blue collar” work ethic. Along the way, “Olky” collected over 1,500 tackles and was the anchor of Richie Petibon’s top 10 defenses. He also won 2 Super Bowl rings and a place on the 70 Greatest Redskin’s list. Olkdog was kind enough to grant me this interview in which he discusses a wide range of topics including his beard, the 5 O’clock club, and NFL Union issues.
FP: How does an undrafted, undersized middle linebacker from Maryland go on to play 11 seasons and 150 games in the NFL?
NO: I had a real instinct for finding the football, loved to hit people and didn’t like them hitting me. I worked hard in the weight room to give me strength to offset my size and was smart enough to learn my assignments quickly. Didn’t get hurt much and when I did I usually could play through it and I was fortunate enough to be part of a winning team.
FP: The Redskin’s locker room had quite the group of characters back in the 80’s (Riggins, Theismann, Manley.) Is there a story that sticks out in your mind that you can share?
NO: I always felt what happened in the locker room stayed in the locker room!
FP: You were a fan favorite because of the way you played the game and how you handled yourself on and off the field. What was it like to play in RFK with those old stands rocking?
NO: I loved playing at RFK in that era and wouldn’t trade it for all the money in the world. I still get chills when I watch the highlight film when the stands were rocking and the fans were chanting “WE WANT DALLAS”!
FP: You recorded over 1500 tackles in your career, but scored just 1 TD. What do you remember about that play?
NO: It was a screen pass to Walter Payton, we had audibled to a man coverage right before the snap and I got between him and the quarterback, reached high and pulled it in and ran about 20 yards for a touchdown. It turned out to be Joe Gibbs first win as a Redskin coach since we were 0-5 at the time and the rest is history!
FP: Do you follow/root for the Skins today, and who’s your favorite player currently playing for the Skins?
NO: I still follow the Skins and Chris Cooley and London Fletcher are probably my favorites.
FP: To your Alma mater for a moment. Do you follow the Terps football and basketball teams and what do you currently think about them and where they are headed?
NO: I’m a big fan of the Terps, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the football team hasn’t reached a plateau and that Gary Williams will work his way out of their current situation.
FP: Do you wear your Super Bowl rings?
NO: I only wear my Super Bowl rings occasionally, usually when making a football related appearance.
FP: What is your relationship like with the Redskin’s organization today?
NO: I have no relationship with the Redskin organization other than the NFL Alumni.
FP: What was your favorite moment on the football field, and do you have any regrets about your career?
NO: My favorite moment was the NFC championship game vs Dallas in 1982 and I have absolutely no regrets about my career.
FP: Are you still working the beard?
NO: Gave up the beard a few years ago, too much grey now so I’m going with the clean cut look now. Some people say I look younger now than when I played because of it!
FP: The Redskin’s basically had a dynasty from 82-91 (4 Super Bowls, 3 wins.) Do you feel that you guys should be better represented in the HOF?
NO: I think it’s only a matter of time until a couple of our HOGS are inducted to the Hall of Fame to join Darrell and Art.
FP: You played at a time when the money was certainly good, but by no means near today’s standards. There are many players from your era that suffer from permanent injuries suffered on the field, and I feel the NFL has not done enough to give back to the players who got the League to where it is today. Organizations like Gridiron Greats have had to step up to help. What’s your take on this issue?
NO: As a former player rep who endured two strikes and had the only team that had no one cross the picket line, I am disgusted by our Unions indifference and the owners half hearted attempts only because of Congressional pressure.
FP: My grandmother owned Margaret’s Inn in Herndon, VA back in the late 70’s and worked at The Event as a bartender. Ever drink a beer served by her?
NO: I’m sure I had many beers served by your grandmother!
FP: Were you ever invited into the 5 o’clock club for a beer?
NO: The HOGS finally invited me into the 5 o’clock club the last few years of my career because they felt sorry for me because all my drinking buddies had retired or been cut by then!
FP: Mel Kaufman passed away last week. What would you like to tell Skin’s fans about him?
NO: Mel Kaufman was a class guy and one of my best friends on the team. He was an unsung overachiever much like myself and was a true Redskin. I will miss him.
Neal, you are a true Redskin and a true gentleman. Thanks for the interview.
Those word’s are music to my ears. After the NFL season ends and before March Madness, sports can be a little boring. The Caps are playing awesome(that’s a bonus) but living in Florida, March means Spring Training.My goal this year is to attend as many games as possible, at as many different venues as possible. I will then report back here with grades on the venues, food, etc. Now the fact that I usually work 6 days and 70 hours a week will put a slight rain on the party, but I will persevere.
The good news is that Spring Training is starting a week early, due to the WBC. This means that I can squeeze a February game in, and I’ve already scored prime WBC tickets. The Phillies, Blue Jays, and Yankees are close by, so I’ll be reporting on them. Oh, here’s my report on the Yankees – A bunch of overpaid steroid abusers with asshole fans. Shitty stadium and overpriced tickets, food, and parking. Awesome, 1 post already down.
In other news the Orioles will be sending 37 Pitchers to camp….37? I hope they are bringing a lot of catchers also. Otherwise, Matt Wieters will be squatting more than me the day after a bacon explosion.
I’m excited for the games, cold beer, hot dogs, peanuts and cracker jacks. All in perfect weather in small venues where the crack of the bat sounds like a beautiful song. Play Ball!