It wasn't particularly shocking that the Redskins were blown out; the stunner was that they just sat there and took it, that the Redskins were content to be bullied and humiliated. Those of us who've been waiting through the Gibbs II era for the Redskins to develop an identity didn't see them moving in any definitive direction Sunday in Foxborough.
With all due respect to professional hockey, pro football is the most violent team sport in this culture. It's based on mayhem and retribution, an eye for an eye, on sheer pride, even if that pride is occasionally misplaced. If Belichick is so bold as to have Brady in the game, sneaking on fourth down and throwing from spread formations when leading 38-0, he also runs the risk of getting his golden boy quarterback mangled. If Belichick has so little regard for the opponent, why should the Redskins have any regard for him and his?
If the Golden Boy stays in the game when the competition is long over, fair enough. But at that point he forfeits any professional benefit of the doubt, and is fair game for whatever comes. This is one place where the NHL gets it right. Half the players in the league would like to hit Belichick right now, but can't.
And maybe it's not the way the Redskins want to play. Maybe they're above that sort of brawling. Perhaps Gibbs wants no part of that philosophy and it's his bust, not mine, that sits in Canton in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. But what was highlighted in Foxborough on Sunday is that the Redskins, still a pretty good team with a chance to make the playoffs, don't seem to have the charismatic leaders who can push the team beyond this pedestrian 4-3 start with narrow home field victories over the Dolphins and Cardinals.
Brother Wilbon, attitude in the NFL starts at the TOP. This goes beyond not having leaders on the field. At some point the Head Coach and his Assistant Head Coach for Defense must call plays to go after the model mongering Golden Boy to get the point across to Hoody Bill. The game was out of hand, the Pats were assured of victory. Hoody and the model moocher kept drilling it in...
Gibbs and Williams are the ones who held off the dogs. For the first time in my life, I am of the opinion that Joe Jackson Gibbs is not the right choice to lead the Redskins. The Redskins need a leader at the top willing to lay it on the line with his players. The Redskins did not have that Sunday.