Let me preface this by saying I love this long lost feeling of excitement come Sunday that my team is giving me once again. In the main, all down to a dude who far from looking the fresh faced rookie he should; look's more and more like a HoF, all American/ pro 15 year top tier veteran by the game. And I wouldn't take back 'the trade' if my life depended on it. I love the overall direction the HC is taking this team in. With those two men orchestrating things on and off the field, I have NO doubt we WILL return to the promised land.
But thanks to 'the trade'; and more so the man who's team we so agonisingly managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory today; it's gona' be at least another two years before we can even compete for post-season play. Let alone think about reaching the top of the mountain for a 4th time.
Now people will look at that, and doubtless start to question whether Coach Mike should be given that time if it's gona' be at least another two long years of regular season play and nothing else. In the same way the defense is getting lambasted tonight from all angles after throwing away a game we had won.
But let's put the reality of the situation, not least the defense, in stark black and white figures. And ask yourself, with everything else to still to attend to; just what Shanahan and co. can realistically be expected to do with one hand tied behind their backs?
It's no secret, as witnessed again today, we have a shocking defensive secondary. We need two starting, quality safety's, neither of which are currently on staff; and one if not two top tier corners. (Hopefully Minifield turns into something, but he's undrafted and coming off an ACL. So let's not pin too much on his young shoulders.). Throw in the captain and mainstay of the defense, Fletch, is coming to the end of his glorious career and needs replacing (maybe Robinson becomes that guy, maybe not. But he and Riley are not gona' strike any immediate fear into opponents next year), along with depth help; and even Stevie Wonder can see where the teams main problem lies.
Addressing it however, is easier said than done.
With no number 1 draft pick for the next two years, a serious need for a quality right tackle on the offensive side of the ball to compliment Trent; and another $ 18 million lost through that B/S cap penalty next year; we are up the metaphoric ' **** creek without a paddle ' until the 2014 season at least.
As we currently stand, with next years cap projected to be around $ 121 million, and taking into account the dead cap carry over minus the Cooley and doubtless at least Brown release hit, along with the $ 18 million penalty; we are marginally under the cap by around 3 million bucks or so. There's gona' have to be some serious restructuring to allow us to go forward with next years rooks and any cheap additions we can swing. Forget doing anything in FA to address the problem. And then you've players like Santana sat on a $ 6 million hit next year, and Merriweather at $ 3.5 who probably won't be here through age/ value. All of whom, along with others, will need to be replaced with bodies.
So scream as loud as you want about this player or that coach, or it being 'the same old Redskins save for RGIII' ; but ask yourself in the stark reality of the situation just what they can realistically be expected to do with one hand tied behind their back thanks to the cap B/S and the lack of top picks that had to spent on the once in a lifetime kid under center.
The progress we're seeing is great. Particularly on the offensive side of the ball. But the progress for the remainder of this year and next at least is gona' slow through little fault of our own.