WASHINGTON — The Redskins are an interesting case in front-office dynamics.
On the one hand, you could say they have the most blurred lines in official roles of any team in the league, except perhaps the Dallas Cowboys. At no point was that more painfully obvious than when the team unceremoniously dumped GM Scot McCloughan mere hours after free agency began, right after leaving him at home for the Combine.
The Combine, Draft and free agency are where a GM makes his bones, so to not include him is to basically tell him he can’t do his job.
What’s more, the team didn’t (publicly) have a replacement already in tow, at least not one that was immediately ready to jump into the role. There was some weird combination of President Bruce Allen and the rest of the staff making decisions post-McCloughan, though it was always difficult to figure out exactly what the involvement of anybody not named Allen was.
In mid-June, the franchise reorganized the front office, promoting former Redskins quarterback Doug Williams and shifting around a few other roles, but it only made the actual decision-making process more convoluted.
Thankfully, we have McCloughan to sort things out for us and answer some of the questions we have.
Ladies and gentlemen, we have The McCloughan Files.
The latest entry: McCloughan sorts out some of the decision-making aspects of the Redskins front office.
For example, what is it exactly Bruce Allen does best for the team? Or, what is his role, specifically?
As the kids say: shots fired.
Calling somebody a politician isn’t an insult by nature. Calling a guy with the name “president” in his title a politician seems to be fitting.
But calling a guy who appears to be the top decision-maker regarding all football decisions a politician seems to imply McCloughan doesn’t think much of Allen’s eye for talent. Or maybe McCloughan is suggesting Allen plays less of a part in the football decisions than we think he does. Or maybe McCloughan is saying Allen is best at covering his tracks (read: lying to the media), like when he spent weeks claiming nothing was wrong with the relationship between McCloughan and the team, only to then fire the beloved GM.
Read into it what you will, but it’s hard to read it as a compliment.
Moving on, McCloughan was also asked about receiver Ryan Grant. Grant, who is known for running good routes and just about nothing else good, is considered by many to be a not-good receiver.
That’s more or less the consensus among fans, based on a very unofficial sampling of social media, but let’s see if the former GM can provide some perspective.
Yikes. So, taken at face value, that would appear to suggest the only reason Grant remains on the team is because head coach Jay Gruden likes him a lot. Which would make sense — Gruden has come out and praised Grant time and again for his consistency and intelligence.
If you’re trying to be kind, perhaps you could interpret that as Grant being so much like a coach on the field that his last name might as well be Gruden, but that doesn’t seem to be where McCloughan was looking with that one.
Here are a few other gems from the latest edition of The McCloughan Files, though they don’t reveal quite as much about the inner workings of the team.
Some Redskins players McCloughan is high on (unsurprisingly so):
A nugget from a previous draft:
Input on the defensive line:
Some thoughts from around the league:
Tune in next week (or whenever McCloughan hops back on Twitter) for the next edition of The McCloughan Files!