Is Jay Gruden the Answer in Washington?

Jay Gruden became the Washington Redskins’ youngest head coach since Joe Gibbs was hired back in 1981 at the age of 40. The 46-year-old coach is the 28th head coach in Redskins’ history and also the fifth-straight offensive-minded head coach in Washington dating back to the hiring of Steve Spurrier in 2002. Ever since Daniel Snyder took over the team in 1999, he has hired seven coaches, six of them used to be offensive coordinators or were considered offensive-minded (Norv Turner was already coaching the Redskins when Snyder took over). So has history goes to show you, only Joe Gibbs had success as an offensive-minded Washington head coach, taking the Redskins to the playoffs in 2005 and 2007 in his second tenure. He’s also the only head coach under Snyder that didn’t get fired (Gibbs retired after the 2007 season). But like Gibbs, Gruden is also a coach that went straight from being an offensive coordinator to a head coach. But we all know Gruden is no Gibbs. So should this offensive-minded head coach finally be the answer Washington has been looking for since Gibbs? Well it’s too early to tell, but as a Washington Redskins fan (hard to admit) I would like to explore the subject. As an offensive coordinator at Cincinatti, Gruden’s offense statistically got better and better each time he was there. So there’s a good sign. Gruden also has experience dealing with young quarterbacks. He helped develop Andy Dalton ever since he was a rookie, which is the type of development Robert Griffin III needs. As for the coaching staff, Gruden has already gotten them in place. He reatined defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, offensive line coach Chris Foerster, and defensive backs coach Raheem Morris. It’s funny because all three of those areas of the football team need work. Washington’s secondary was one of the worst in the NFL because they had inconsistent play at the safety position. The Redskins’ offensive line was inconsistent as well; they would pick up their blocks in the running game, but wouldn’t be able to hold up their blocking in pass protection. As for the offense, Gruden promoted his tight ends coach Sean McVay to offensive coordinator. McVay is only 27 years old (turning 28 on the 24th), but he coached with Gruden back when they coached together at Tampa Bay. As a matter of fact, General Manager Bruce Allen knew both McVay and Gruden back in their days in Tampa Bay when they worked under Jay’s older brother Jon Gruden (Joe Gibbs was an offensive coordinator for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before going to the San Diego Chargers and then eventually the Redskins). McVay was also his offensive assistant for both Gruden and Jim Haslett when they coached for the Florida Tuskers in the United Football League. Just like Gruden, McVay was also a quarterback in high school. It will be interesting to see how McVay does in his first NFL offensive coordinator gig along with a new head coach at the same time. This upcoming season for the Washington Redskins is going to be interesting because fans will get to see something no one has ever seen before. Only time will tell whether Gruden will succeed or not, but from the looks of his background and history, Redskins fans should have something to look forward to next year.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s