In a wide-ranging interview transcribed by Dan Steinberg for D.C. Sports Bog of the Washington Post, D.C. media veteran George Michael gave his opinion on a number of Redskins-related topics on the Mike Wise radio show.
The entire transcript is fascinating and Michael has a unique viewpoint from his time around the team and his admittedly close relationship with owner Dan Snyder. But if Michael is a friend of Snyder’s, he certainly said a few things that would make his friend/boss feel uncomfortable.
Asked if Vinny Cerrato was a capable talent evaluator, Michael said the following.
“Oh, there’s no ifs buts or ands,” Michael said. “I mean, I know that
for a fact, I know that from other people around the league. Here’s the
problem Mike — and God, I can’t believe I’m telling all this
truth — Vinny Cerrato is a zero when it comes to public
relations and building relationships with people in the world.”
sorry. My Good God,” Michael continued. “[Cerrato] doesn’t ask why don’t people like me, but you’ve
got to go out and you’ve got to do things . . . I feel bad that Cerrato
has not gone out and tried to build these relationships.”
The Redskins have a complicated relationship with the local media that others could speak more intelligently about, and it’s hard to argue that their public relations is poor. The team’s fanbase is predictably unhappy with the team’s recent run of so-so play.
But it’s also hard to argue that whoever is making personnel decisions for Washington is a great talent evaluator. Michael admits that Cerrato isn’t always calling the shots.
“Let me tell you the truth: Dan [Snyder] does make I think most of those
big-type decisions,” Michael said. “He says ‘Let’s get this guy, let’s
get that guy.’ And the guy that takes the heat for it — and it’s why I
think he’s never gotten fired — is Vinny Cerrato.”
Yikes. No matter how much Snyder wants to win, it seems pretty obvious that this is not a successful way to run a football operation in 2009. It rarely works for Mike Brown of the Bengals and his father was Paul freaking Brown, perhaps the greatest innovator in football history.
There seems to be a theory that the Washington roster is one of the league’s most talented, but few outside of Redskins headquarters would agree with that sentiment. Most would say it’s a mediocre roster with a quickly aging offensive line and very little depth.
And while it isn’t fair to coach Jim Zorn, he’ll ultimately be the one who takes the blame.