April 21, 2009

Jason Campbell Deserves Better Than the Redskins

We all know the Redskins front office is incompetent and the fans are fickle, but the way they have treated Jason Campbell is awful. 

The Skins are like the bad boyfriend with a wandering eye.  They swear up and down that Campbell is the future of the franchise, but every time some hot piece of ass (I’m looking at you, Jay Cutler) is available they’re ready to throw Jason’s stuff out on the lawn.  When it doesn’t work out with the greener grass on the other side, they patch things up with Campbell and the process repeats itself.

First, some history: when Campbell was drafted (in 2005 - the other 1st round QBs were Alex Smith and Aaron Rodgers), Skins fans treated him like the second coming (as they do for almost every high draft pick).  For his first year and a half, the big debate was “Is he ready?”  Gibbs named him the starter halfway through his second season, and he’s only missed 3 starts due to injury.

Let’s take a look at his stats:

Year Games Yards Comp% TD Int Rat
2006 7 1,297 53.1 10 6 76.5
2007 13 2,700 60.0 12 11 77.6
2008 16 3,245 62.3 13 6 84.3


Those look like the stats of an improving young QB.  I know the Campbell haters will claim that his stats from last year are misleading because he got off to a great (lucky?) start and finished the season in more pedestrian fashion.  I think they’re just looking for an excuse to bash the guy.

Since his arrival in Washington, Campbell has had to fight to dislodge the ancient Mark Brunell from the starting job, dealt with rumors that he would be replaced by Todd Collins, heard fans claim that Colt Brennan was the real future of the team, and now has been the subject of rampant trade speculation.

What’s wrong with the Redskins?  Some would say Dan Snyder and Vinnie Cerrato, but I think Skins fans have the front office they deserve.

(Note: for any other team, I’d bring up racism, Doug Williams earns the Redskins a pass on black Quarterback issues)

25 Responses:

Anonymous said...

let me guess...the writer of this is a cowboys or eagles fan

Grant said...

I don't think racism should be off the table. Skins fans who honestly believe Todd Collins or Colt Brennan is a better option probably do have some racial issues.

I'm a skins fan and I'm ashamed of how they've treated Campbell.

"ben" said...

I really thought this was J-Red's work. I'm not familiar with Brien's writing being controlled by his blinding hatred for D.C. (sans Caps).

No longer being in the area, I guess I don't have quite the pulse on the town that I used to, but labeling Redskins fans as fickle seems pretty baseless. It's one of the most loyal fan bases out there. If you're going to claim it's because the most popular QB is the backup QB, that's how football teams work when they lose.

People who think Collins or Colt are the answer over Campbell don't have race issues, they have football IQ issues.

Campbell is fine. He's just not a star.

Volunteer Fairfax said...

A "bias" blogger's opinion shouldn't show up on my google "news" search for "Redskins". Campbell is nice and a decent QB and as a skins fan, he does the job, but there are better QBs out there and if the skins can get them they will. It's just business and every team runs that way, it's just that the Redskins are the only one's to admit it and get credit for it. Come on, it's not like they're Detroit or Cleveland and they've been in the playoffs a couple times recently. Get over the "bad management" stuff.

Brien said...

Anonymous - wrong, a Steelers fan

Ben - They're loyal to the team, but fickle about everything else. There's an "Oh look, something shiny!" character to most talk about the Redskins in the area. They get a new coach, swear that he's going to get a real shot, then by year 2 they're calling Bill Cowher.

Volunteer Fairfax - Complain to Google News, not to me. Sure there are better QBs out there, but there's no better way to destroy a young quarterback's confidence than to make him constantly look over his shoulder. Also, 2 playoff appearances this decade isn't something to brag about (the Dolphins have 3).

Anonymous said...

Redskins' fans are far from fickle. The Redskins have the longest standing string of consecutive sellouts in the league. That string began long before the team became a consistent title contender in the eighties and continued long after. No other franchise is even close in terms of consecutive sellouts and skins' fans have maintained that string of unprecedented loyalty despite the addition of 40,000 seats in the transition from RFK to FedEx in the late nineties, and some of the highest ticket prices in the NFL. I should add that this string is all the more impressive given the ridiculously stupid personnel moves the team has made under Snyder's ownership.

One can certainly argue that Campbell deserves better than Snyder and Cerrato, but that has nothing to do with the fans, the vast majority of which understand that the kid hasn't been in the same offense for two consecutive seasons and hasn't gotten great protection, particularly last year.

Adam said...

Jason Campbell "deserves better?" That's laughable. The NFL is a business, not a charity organization. Teams are not obligated to have loyalty to any player, because when contract signing time comes, players are not going to have loyalty to them. If you're so concerned about Jason Campbell, maybe you should lobby your team to trade for him. In the meantime, stop being naive about players "deserving" anything. Every team out there looks out for their best interests, not their players' individual interests.

Brien's Dad said...

The most popular person in most NFL cities is the backup quarterback.At least until he gets into a game. Notice I said most. If you are lucky enough to have Big Ben or Peyton, this doesn't apply. It's always been that way and always will be. It has nothing to do with race or how nice the starting quarterback is or whether he is improving. Until he gets you deep into the playoffs, fans (and Dan Snyder) will yearn for someone else.

Peter said...

You have it in reverse.

"The Redskins deserve better than Jason Campbell"

Stop with the whiney emotion. Campbell, as much as I like him from what I've seen of his personality, has not really shown greatness. Rookies in their first year lit up the field in baltimore and Atlanta, while Campbell went along staring down receivers, playing scared, and hesitant. No fire. No motivation. No excitement.

I think he will be a career backup QB in two years. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

What are you gonna do, feed the horse who can't win at a county fair just because he has a pretty mane?

Oh, and racism. STFU already. That is so 150 years ago.

Anonymous said...

Racism? Are you under the influence of a controlled substance?

The real scandal here is how on earth the Skins could have stuck with the pedestrian Campbell for the entire year without giving Brennan a shot.

We've seen Brennan for 3 years and have no more questions.


Anonymous said...

This article is a bunch of crap J. Campbell anyone who has watched even a few of the skins games can see that he is lacking in the leadership dept. And racism has nothing to do with this (fyi - I'm african american born in dc and season ticket holder). And most the Redskins fans (the majority of whom are also a.a.) in my circle feel the same as I do. Again he seems timid and lacks leadership. Colt brennan in just a few pre-season games showed more fire and an ability to take charge than jason. Showing his stats from last year does not reflect the main problem I believe the team has with Jason (leadership)

I personally don't believe that the team needs a qb, but understand that Campbell was Gibbs choice at qb back in 2005. The current regigm owes him nothing. I also believe an open qb cometition would help the team.

Peter said...

Oh noooo!!! Most Redskins fans are African-American!

Guess i have to go find a whiter team now, damn.

Well...maybe not.

You see?

"84% of honkies and brothers agree. You will never see Jason Campbell on a Wheaties Box. They are reserved for athletes with a pulse"

Anonymous said...

I probably could have worded my retort a little clearer. I said most of the Skins fans in MY CIRCLE are A.A. I'm sure their are ampleHonkie (quoting you...) fans. But at least we agree on JC. dude needs a pulse Hail to the Redskins

Peter said...

heck, the Corps taught me we're all green anyway.

Indeed. Hail.

Nate from Oz said...

I am a 'skins fan, and I think Jason Campbell is a great QB. I'm a big fan. I think the way the front office has gone about this whole thing is wrong and if I was JC I would be looking at shutting these people up, then on a contract year, when I'm a stud, leaving.

Nikhil Verma said...

I don't think this has anything to do with racism. It has to do with ownership having ADD. They are the ultimate "grass is always greener on the other side". They treated Brad Johnson the same way, the year after he set the franchise record for passing yards in a season. I think Dan Snyder is many things, but racist is not one of them. In my humble opinion.

Question for Brien. Brien, you mentioned Doug Williams and your belief this would exempt the Skins from the charges of racism. That was under a different ownership regime. That was the Cooke. Would you agree that in evaluating race, it's the ownership group that matters and not the "organization"?

Nikhil Verma said...

Brien said the following to Ben,

"They're loyal to the team, but fickle about everything else. There's an "Oh look, something shiny!" character to most talk about the Redskins in the area."

Brien, I gotta respectfully disagree in this regard. Most Skins fans I know, and most Skins talk I listen to on ESPN 980, actually wants the team to be stable. We want continuity.

But since we know how this owner goes things, we speculate about what WILL happen. It's not necessarily what we want to happen. It's what we think will happen, knowing Snyder. In other words, we're predicting. Not necessarily wishing.

Brien said...

Holy crap, some people (not you, Nikhil) have terrible reading comprehension. I clearly said that racism was not an issue.

Nikhil, I think Doug Williams exempts the Redskins fans. I think most management teams are far too concerned with winning to let race get in the way. Also, Skins fans say they want stability, but it's always stability with the NEXT coach/QB/coordinator, not the current one.

"ben" said...

"Brien said the following to Ben,

"They're loyal to the team, but fickle about everything else. There's an "Oh look, something shiny!" character to most talk about the Redskins in the area."

Brien, I gotta respectfully disagree in this regard."

I will not be so respectful in my disagreement. Brien, you have totally mistaken the management as the majority of the fans. If you were J-Red, I would chalk it up to inflammatory comments for the sake of being inflammatory. With you, I don't know the deal.

I don't recall "Redskin Nation" ever hailing Jason Campbell as the team's savior, and then suddenly turning on him. I don't recall us doing cartwheels when Zorn was hired. We are not fickle. Being skeptical, then hopeful, then disillusioned is not the same as being fickle. Not even close.

As for the racism stuff, I at first assumed you were kidding about Doug Williams exempting the fans from being racists. But since you're standing by the claim, well, it's hard to know exactly where to start attacking that comment, it's so illogical.

Brien said...

Ben, you have a short memory, then. Sure, no one did cartwheels for Zorn, but when Campbell was riding the bench and Brunell was starting, there was a HUGE push to give the kid a shot. It wasn't every fan, but it was larger even than the "Colt Brennan is the NEW savior" group.

As for the racism thing, I don't think it's at all controversial to say that since the Redskins fan base has a history of early support for a black QB (Williams) that they probably aren't going to be prejudiced against another black quarterback.

Nikhil Verma said...

Brien, yeah I saw the part where you said it wasn't race at all. But then since everyone else started talking about race, I got caught up in responding to them, not to what you originally said.
In general, I think fans of any sport want the players who help their team win, . It's true that fans do often identify with and root more for

J-Red said...

I recall most Redskins fans reacting to the Zorn hiring with "Well, at least it wasn't Fassel."

I agree that most Redskins fans have never considered Jason Campbell the savior, but when you're a supposedly football-saavy town and there is a significant minority of fans who think Todd Collins could lead the team to the promised land, I can't help but be confused.

I know the brighter two among you know that the team suffers at FAR more than a single position, even one as important as quarterback. That being said, do what fans of well-managed franchises do in down years - root for the growth and development of young talent.

Skins fans have gotten that with Campbell, despite a coaching change and the most tumultuous franchise this side of Detroit, and they still want more. Scrap it all and start over.

It just doesn't make sense to me.

I do, however, hope Haynesworth is a monumental bust and that next year ends up being capped so Snyder has to eat it.

"ben" said...

"I do, however, hope Haynesworth is a monumental bust and that next year ends up being capped so Snyder has to eat it."

I was in town when that signing went down. Most reactions were eye-rolling, here goes Snyder again, gee I hope this works but I sure won't be shocked when Haynesworth is a monumental bust. Yet, I'm sure when that happens, you'll all be on here posting about how the fickle Skins fans have turned on the management and players.

As Nikhil said, what Skins fans want is a solid, consistent organization. The majority of griping is directed at Snyder.

As for Doug Williams, how long does this racism exemption last, exactly? It's only been 20 years, so do I get a free pass for another 10 years, or more? Also, I've had black people over at my house before, so that has to be good for, like, at least one get-out-of-being-a-racist free card, right?

J-Red said...

I assigned a lot of the Jason Campbell/Todd Collins thing to racism at first before I realized that Redskins fans were desperate for any quick-fix solution because a long-term solution is impossible with Snyder and Cerrato. So in my mind, the Doug Williams exemption is over. Especially when the team's name is a racial slur.

Nikhil Verma said...


This blog isn't a forum for social or political issues. But you said something that bothered me so much, I have no choice but to respond. You said racisim is "so 150 years ago".
Let me guess. You're a white, male whom has had minimal interaction with people of different backgrounds. If you truly believe what you said, you're naive and ignorant.
When it comes to race relations, this country has come a really, really long way. But we have a really long way to go. People like you remind me of the 70 pound overweight, fat chick who has lost 40 pounds. As a result, she thinks she's now anerexic.
I seriously urge you to be more educated and broad minded. Perhaps take a few sociology classes, and civil rights courses. Maybe make friends with minorities and ask them their views. Not just 1 or 2 blacks, but a cross section of them.
Jason, Russell, Brien, and Jeremy: I know you guys don't want
this to be about race, politics, or anything else like that. But what Peter said was so breathtakingly naive and uneducated, that it warrants a response. The scary part is that there are people like Peter who think racism is a thing of the past.


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