SNIDER: Paging Jay Gruden – please come back

Rick Snider
November 17, 2019 - 5:57 pm
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Former Redskins coach Jay Gruden is looking awfully good in the rear-view mirror.
 
The Redskins scored nine touchdowns at least during an 0-5 start before Gruden was fired. His replacement – offensive line coach Bill Callahan – has seen one end zone celebration in the past four games.
 
Oh, Washington won in Callahan's debut over Miami and even scored twice, but since then, a team-record 16 straight quarters saw only field goals until Derrius Guice broke loose for a touchdown. The 34-17 loss on Sunday to the New York Jets – the awful 2-7 New York Jets – signifies a new rock bottom in Washington.
 
Callahan has done a poor job, worrying about a running game while FedEx Field burned around them. Luckily, nobody was injured as maybe 32,000 fans – more visitors than locals, despite $6 ticket prices online – made FedUp Field mostly a ghost town.
 
Say what you want about Gruden, but at least his offense scored regularly. The Redskins managed only one field goal on two turnovers deep in Jets territory before Guice ended the drought with a 45-yard scoring catch that was 40 yards of open ground.
 
Callahan was so fearful of failure, the Redskins punted on a fourth-and-one-foot with 1:31 left in the first half. Naturally, the Jets took three plays to cover 82 yards and a touchdown for a 20-3 halftime lead. At least Callahan grew some backbone in the third quarter and tried a fourth-and-sixth that saw the pass batted away.
 
Quarterback Dwayne Haskins looks lost. If not turning into the pass rush, he's overthrowing open receivers. There's nothing that has shown Haskins will succeed and Callahan hasn't created even a simple package for the passer.
 
Meanwhile, defensive players stand around like it's a preseason game. When the Jets are smacking you around at will, something's really wrong. The defense showed no passion against New York, like it was the last game of the season and nobody wanted to spend the offseason rehabbing an injury.
 
Can the Redskins fire an interim coach?
 
Can they fire a general manager?
 
Can they fire an owner, as the crowd chanted, "Sell the team."
 
The only thing the Redskins are close to is the No. 1 overall pick. It may be a tough choice to decide whether to take LSU passer Joe Burrow or sell the pick for a fistful of firsts.
 
Just six more games to go.
 
Rick Snider has covered Washington sports since 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @Snide_Remarks

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