SNIDER: Seattle will be 'Horny for Zorny'

Rick Snider
February 25, 2019 - 5:53 pm
Seattle will be 'Horny for Zorny'

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

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Oh, remember the salad days of 2008, when Jim Zorn started a surprising 6-2 as the Redskins coach? The Sports Junkies were "Horny for Zorny" as the whole town wondered where this guy came from?

And then it all went badly. The Redskins finished 2-6 the rest of the season and 4-12 in 2009 before Zorn was fired. He was a dead man walking after the first month of the second season.

Zorn on Monday was named head coach of the XFL's new Seattle team that begins play in 2020. Now 65, he looks the same as his Redskins days, though a lot happier. Zorn made a couple dad jokes about already having eight season-ticket holders, but fortunately nothing comparable to his "maroon-and-black" blunder in his Redskins introductory presser.

Zorn talked of XFL coaches needing to be inventive with "a few tweaks with the clock," but nothing about a swinging gate. He wants to develop young players and coaches. Zorn's the same old rah-rah guy who drew blank stares in the Redskins locker room, but fortunately back in a town where he was a beloved Seahawks player.

Redskins fans should wish Zorn well. Things really weren't all of his fault in Washington. He was supposed to be an offensive coordinator until nobody wanted the head job following Joe Gibbs' exit. So, Zorn put on a suit, drove over to owner Dan Snyder's house and suddenly learned he was the coach and ultimately the scapegoat as general manager Vinny Cerrato tried to deflect blame. Cerrato couldn't save himself and was fired weeks before Zorn, as the franchise went off the rails and plunged deep into a river below.

Zorn was creative with the Redskins. Most of it went badly, though the Z shades on the sidelines on hot days were a stroke of genius. He was just an old quarterback trying to find his way into coaching. Maybe the debacle of his days with the Redskins will make Zorn a better coach in Seattle.

And one day, the Junkies may finally sell all those "Horny for Zorny" T-shirts they made.

Rick Snider has covered Washington sports since 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @Snide_Remarks