Jason Campbell recalls a “whole bunch of crazy going on” in Washington

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For most of the past 20 years in Washington, the NFL franchise has had more lows than highs. A former first-round quarterback of the team has shed some light on some of the lows he experienced there.

“The hard thing is the Redskins have a really big fan base and you fall in love with people in the D.C. area,” Jason Campbell told Deron Snyder of the Washington Times. “That’s the part that makes you want to be there. Then there’s the football side of it. You have a good relationship with the guys who played before you. But the flip side is when you realize there’s a whole bunch of crazy going on.”

For Campbell, the “whole bunch of crazy” manifested itself most notably when the team abruptly imported Sherm Lewis from a bingo hall to take control of an offense that was being operated by then-coach Jim Zorn.

“That was really weird,” Campbell said. “He didn’t even know all the plays. It was just crazy. You could feel the animosity on the field. Lewis told me in all his years in football he had never seen a quarterback deal with so much chaos going on around him. It was a hard position for me to be in.”

Campbell realizes that the team’s current quarterback is in a very good position, with $19.95 million earned last year and $23.94 million to be made in 2017.

“Kirk is making 20-plus million dollars and can sleep at night,” Campbell said. “He’s not super-stressed because he knows if Washington doesn’t sign him, other teams will. It’s not like he’s making two or three million and worried about getting hurt. He’s already made more than most NFL guys are paid in eight or nine years.

“He just has to play this year out. They’re gonna give him a long-term contract here or he’ll get one somewhere else. Either way, he’s good.”

Campbell is right. Washington failed to get Cousins signed to a long-term deal in 2016 when it would have been a lot cheaper than it will be now, and the team failed to get Cousins signed to a long-term deal in 2015, when it would have been a whole lot cheaper than it will be now. So the team can either pay him what his circumstances dictate or he can take $44 million from the past two seasons and see what happens next year in Washington.

There’s a decent chance it will involve a whole bunch of crazy.

27 responses to “Jason Campbell recalls a “whole bunch of crazy going on” in Washington

  1. Cousins is contributing to this mess too. Let’s not make him into some blameless innocent.

  2. I noticed early on that Jason Campbell throws one of the prettiest spirals you’ll ever see. But the DC experience obviously wrecked most of his potential. After all that crazy in DC, it’s a wonder he had enough left in the tank to stay in the NFL as long as he did.

  3. “It’s a business!” Fans should not get too close to players they like…or teams for that matter. Players move on..here today and gone tomorrow. Teams having decades old fan bases relocate. following the Rams from LA to St. Louis to LA and Carson from SD to Carson..next up Buffalo to San Antonio. Fans are over taxed and can’t build super stadiums for their teams. So, they move and the NFL lets them. Sad.

  4. I’ll never understand the Redskin’s preoccupation with Cousins, he’s decent, middle of the pack QB, but nowhere elite or worth elite money.

    The Redskins can’t be held hostage to these unreasonable salary demands, they should put a fair offer on the table and either he signs or they move on. If another team is willing to pay an elite salary for that middling Qb, that becomes their problem, not yours.

  5. I am not sure Cousins is worth the money. Sure, he can say to the Skins – pay me an amount equal to this years tag + future in guaranteed funds, but there is no chance he gets a contract like that from another team.

    His chance for making the most money will come from the Redskins.

    Now, if he isn’t as concerned about getting the most money – he will have options. I do think that there will be teams that will be willing to pay him $$ if they don’t have to give up draft picks. But, i don’t think whomever signs him to a big contract is going to get their moneys worth.

  6. I understand letting Cousins play under the franchise tag last season. He had come off a nice year, but it was his first as a starter. In the first three seasons, he was 18-19 td-int, and was pretty average. Let him play a year under the tag, and see if he can repeat his performance. But, they should have done everything possible to get him to a long term deal this offseason. Instead, it kills their cap this year, and they either let him walk, or kill their cap going forward.

    Washington is one of the few places, where bungling the contract for your franchise qb can be seen as improvement for the front-office. At least they’ve crippled their cap so they can’t throw money at big-name players who fall into the over-the-hill (Bruce Smith, Deion Sanders) or will-quit-when-paid (Haynesworth) categories.

  7. Cousins is the 3rd best QB in the NFC East and not anywhere near a top 10 QB. For him to be collecting $20mil last year and $24mil this year and then crying about it is insane. He’s mediocre in his finest hour.

  8. Man hard to know what to do with some of these comments. We need a 1/2 like and 1/2 dislike button! Like one after each paragraph because the last two comments I agree with some of what each poster is saying but not all of it and that can be said for most comments! Lol

  9. Not to mention Campbell was one of the worst QBs The Redskins ever had……Ask him about his Chicago experience It was not better I guarantee it!!!!

  10. I am never going to be someone to say “he isn’t worth that much” because the reality is you’re worth what you negotiate. He’s a QB in a QB-starved market and he’s in demand. This is a classic case of when ‘don’t hate the player; hate the game”actually fits.

  11. Campbell was an average NFL starting qb. The Redskins only had one good wr and a good TE while he played there and several years he played their OL was trash like the second half of 08 & in 09 when the vets all started getting injured.

    Campbell certainly wasn’t great, but the situations around him, his lack of weapons in the passing game and the constant issues with the front office (Cerrato & Dan) and with Zorn being the HC and the Sherman Lewis debacle made everything worse.

    He wasn’t the best but wasn’t the worse! Similar to Steve Spurier’s line. Lol

    If the Redskins had drafted DeSean Jackson or Jordy Nelson instead of Devin Thomas and then different players instead of Fred Davis and Malcolm Kelly amongst other mistakes we could have been better in his time at qb.

    People complain about the FO now but compared to how the end of 08 & 09 went Kirk Cousins is living in a dream compared to Campbell’s constant nightmare.

    To ask a young qb to overcome The mess that the franchise was back at the end of 08 & in 09 is just impossible.

    We all saw Campbell’s talent on display and gen he was throwing bombs to Josh Gordan back in 2012 or 2013, when he had a supreme talented wr he flourished.

  12. ““Kirk is making 20-plus million dollars and can sleep at night,” Campbell said. “He’s not super-stressed because he knows if Washington doesn’t sign him, other teams will. It’s not like he’s making two or three million and worried about getting hurt. He’s already made more than most NFL guys are paid in eight or nine years.”

    I never thought if it this way, but that’s an amazing point

  13. Jason Campbell was playing well for the Raiders in 2011 before he got injured. He was poised, accurate, was making great decisions and the team was 4-2. The knock on him at that point was that he didn’t make enough plays with his legs. He was injured on a scramble he probably wouldn’t have made a couple of weeks prior to that.
    Had he stayed healthy, who knows. But I think that was his last best chance to be a franchise QB.

  14. We had to trade up to even have 25. In retrospect it was a poor decision but Gibbs was sold on Campbell. It was a shock that Green Bay took Aaron Rodgers at 24 given that they had Brett Favre. Every team 1-23 in the draft wish they had taken him. Where Gibbs/Cerrato & Dan really screwed up was panicking because they lost Smoot in free agency and taking Carlos Rogers over Aaron Rodgers with the 10th pick.

  15. The Redskins were so adament against paying Cousins a long term contract at $19 million per year that they just gave him two 1 year contracts that averaged $22 million a year……and Cousins doesn’t look like the type to voluntarily take a paycut. Sheesh my Redskins are the worse. The best QB we’ve had in over 25 years and we somehow managed to foul up the situation. I guarantee you if RG3 had put up the same numbers Cousins did these past 2 seasons he would have been signed a long time ago.

  16. It’s really hard to judge the guy taken after Smith and Rogers.
    1.5 season with Gibbs offense got hurt. The Skins abruptly switched to WCO without the personnel to run it. Not supprisingly JC struggled. They sent JC to the Raiders but the Coach Cable really wanted Bruce Gradkowski and kept benching him even though JC was better.
    He got one season as unquestioned starter 4-1 looked like they’d win the division he got hurt and that was it. A brief reappearance with the horrible Browns and that was it.

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