Good until proven great

Jan. 13, 2004, midnight | By Nick Falgout | 17 years ago

Yes, almighty Joe Gibbs is coming back; try to keep the fanfare to a minimum. It would be hard for you to not know that God is returning to Earth, unless you live under a rock and have missed three consecutive front page Post stories and several two-hour news conferences and the limo parade in downtown DC. The overwhelming message is clear: Gibbs is back! The Redskins are saved!

Whoa there, Cowboy (an admittedly dangerous thing to include in a 'Skins article).

Last time I checked, the coach didn't play the games. They have players to do that kind of physical work. Sure, Gibbs came into a no-name 'Skins team in 1982 and pulled an 8-8, but even the Bengals pulled an 8-8 this past year. The value of that record is decreasing significantly. I seem to remember a certain other coach in recent Redskins history that was fired after a first 8-8 season. Not to mention the whole "five coaches in five years" thing. Each coach with more fanfare than the last.

But this is GOD, you cry.

Well, sometimes, even God needs to adjust his personnel. Remember Noah and his ark? Gibbs is coming to a team with an underachieving defense, an awful offensive line, and no running game. Trung Candidate? What were they thinking? Ramsey may have had some sparkling games this past season, but not even the best quarterback in the league can survive consistent pressure. Gibbs has his work cut out for him.

Gibbs will certainly have a morale-boosting effect on the aching Washington area (hasn't he already?), and will of course bring a veteran presence to the team. But he can't win without a solid player core. Every coach has his limits. As does his players, and he can only stretch a thin talent pool so far.

I'm not saying the Redskins will sputter and fade under Gibbs. I am saying that people need to slow down and realize that we may not see the Super Bowl next season, or ever, for that matter. The past, in this case, has little to do with the present. Gibbs may be a great coach, hiring Gibbs was certainly a great move, but the hype has to go. Expectations can only be set so high. Washington has set itself for a big fall, just like it has for the past four seasons or so, and we're not even out of the postseason. Let the man prove himself. Not the other way around.

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Nick Falgout. Nick Falgout was bored one day and decided to change his Chips staff information. And now, for a touching song lyric: "I'm a reasonable man, get off my case Get off my case, get off my case." ~ Radiohead, "Packt Like Sardines in a Crushd … More »

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