Friday, July 27, 2007
MAO of the Week (7-27) and Another Semi-Prominent Naysayer
Just in time for training camp, at least one Redskins player is thinking big, really big. One-upping teammate Clinton Portis’ prediction of an appearance in the NFC Championship game, Antwaan Randle El is talking Super Bowl. As Steinz put it: “it takes a particular lack of self-doubt to make that claim about a 5-11 team with a first-year starting QB.” We would have to agree. A lack of self-doubt is often a starting point on the road to perennial (and often aggressively contagious) optimism. For such a lack of self-doubt and for his bubbling ‘Tism, we name Randle El our Manny Acta Optimist of the Week.
We can only assume that Antwaan would take issue with the newest enemy of ‘Tism: Jason Cole. This Yahoo! sports "expert" (or is he just a yahoo? Haha!) would have us believe that, in the coming season, the only teams worse than the Washington Redskins will be the Browns, Falcons, and Raiders. *Withholding litany of the most profane profanities you have ever heard in this or any other life*. What kind of not-even-close-to-the-#1-web-search-engine expert is this guy?
Even if you do not share Randle El's well-thought-out assessment that the Redskins are mortal locks for the Super Bowl (sound familiar?), you surely must believe that they will be better in this coming season than some of the pathetic teams that Expert Cole ranked ahead of them in his illogical rankings.
Seriously, Washington at the very least deserves consideration for admittance to "The Muddled Middle", (as opposed to being relegated to "The Bottom of the Pack") with the likes of the Dolphins (who is their QB again?), Packers (their QB is how old and how far removed from his prime?) and Panthers (why is the critics' favorite darling ranked so low in the first place?). Maybe it's just backlash against the Skins for years of gluttonous offseason spending, followed by enormous expectations and predictions of success, followed by disappointment. Maybe Cole thinks that such a pattern will continue unabated. Or maybe he's just a shoddy analyst.
We believe the latter, for it is clear that this off-season the Redskins broke the cycle, making smaller, more sensible moves, and getting great value out of their limited number of draft picks. Attitudes towards the best way to build a competitor have changes, and it's time to return to those heady days of two seasons ago, and beyond.
While our disgust with Jason Cole is not on the same level as our disgust with Erik Kay, they are nevertheless part of the same team of evil optimism-haters. Put another way, if Erik Kay is the Emperor, Jason Cole is a Stormtrooper (Mike Wise drives an Imperial Walker). Randle El has chosen not to believe their lies, and DCO stand with him. Cole thinks the Skins will be the 29th best team in the league; Antwaan believes they will be the best. We'll see who's closer.