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A Calming Influence
Greetings from The Booth!
It just got real this week. The annual “Meet The Fall Coaches” event was held Monday night in the Buzzy Plaza between The Wilkins Center and Shentel Stadium at Shenandoah University. Burgers on the grill, beverages, and mingling with fans, athletes, and coaches…what’s not to like about that? And despite a very hot and humid evening, there was that certain something in the air that hinted of the coming Fall football season.
Speaking of football, have you noticed that there has been very little drama coming out of the Washington Football Team training camp this Summer? With owner Dan Snyder’s wife in charge, it looks like the football people are actually being left to do football things. We saw that for the most part last season, and what happened? The WFT went 7-9, but it was good enough to win the NFC East in Head Coach Ron Rivera’s first season with the team.
Rivera has been the calming influence in the middle of a stormy franchise. As talk of the toxic team culture under Snyder and his minions and the name change swirled around the team, all Rivera did was coach the burgundy and gold to a division title, even as he was battling cancer. Unlike the other rare division titles in the last 20-plus seasons, there is even talk by many pro football “experts” of a repeat in 2021. It seems a solid foundation has been laid.
The other calming influence on the field seems to be the (assumed) starting quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, who brought his talents, veteran leadership, and trademark beard to DC in the offseason. Fitzpatrick has been there and done that, having played for just about every other NFL franchise in his career. The WFT could have done a lot worse. Fitzpatrick is a solid NFL quarterback who has numerous 4th quarter comebacks on his resume.
Word is that Fitzpatrick has slowly learned the Washington offense, and is developing chemistry with the much-improved talent that was added in the offseason. With a projected top-5 defense filled with stars like Chase Young, things certainly look bright. We will find out soon.
Former team executive Bruce Allen once infamously said “we’re winning off the field.” It finally looks like the Football Team can win on the field.
Until the next visit from The Booth…HTTR and GO HORNETS!