City Desk

Cheap Seats Daily: Snyder’s PR Hire Calls Redskins ‘a Mediocre Team’?

Redskins training camp opened yesterday without Stephen Strasburg Brian Orakpo or Michael Vick. There was, however, a group of fans calling for the team to bring Vick in. Spurned ex-Redskin LaVar Arrington wondered on his WJFK radio show whether the Vick clique was hired by Dan Snyder as a "guerilla marketing campaign" to prepare the rest of the fan base for actually signing history's most athletic dog killer.

I like his thinking. Arrington's, that is.

Orakpo signed last night and will be dressed out today. The Sporting News ranked the Redskins as the best fit for Vick.

***

The Vick influence, meanwhile, remains profound. Ultimate fighting opponents for years have tried to keep states from sanctioning MMA by calling it "human cockfighting," a term made famous by Sen. John McCain. But McCain's tag did nothing to stop the spread of the cage matches. So, New York legislators opposed to seeing the sport, or whatever you want to call it, sanctioned in their state have adopted "human dogfighting" as their catch phrase.

***

Speaking of guerilla marketing: Larry Weisman looks more like a brilliant hire for Dan Snyder every day.

(AFTER THE JUMP:New Skins PR official calls team "mediocre"?)

Weisman, a longtime USA Today pro football correspondent, now writes press releases for the Redskins that look a lot like his old-school journalism. And real news organizations that are either lazy or duped have been treating the releases like news stories. (What's up with that, ESPN?)

But, because Weisman was so prolific in his final days as a newspaperman, his pieces are still trickling out as he starts working for Snyder. The Sporting News recently published a state of the team piece that Weisman co-authored before Snyder began paying for his services.

Here's some highlights from Larry's last ride in journalism, headlined "Mediocre Returns on Big Investments":

"The modern Redskins are spring champions and winners of free agency — and not much else...Since Daniel Snyder bought the franchise in 1999, it has one division title and two playoff victories, accolades hardly worth the megamillions Washington has burned through trying to get the best players of the day...An 8-8 team, the Redskins appeared happy to just tread water this year.

The Redskins want to run the ball, but Clinton Portis faded down the stretch in '08. He's a high-mileage player for his age — he turns 28 on Sept. 1 — and lacks a downfield burst at this stage in his career.... The offensive line is past ripe, the quarterback has not matured and the receivers are in transition. They rely too heavily on Portis on offense, and on defense, they'll bank on Haynesworth to elevate everyone's level...Even with all that, this team will be hard-pressed to make the playoffs in the competitive NFC East...Bottom line: The Redskins are a mediocre team."

Tell it like it was, Larry! At the very least, Snyder has to worry about one less guy out there who'll write this stuff.

***

Speaking of spurned ex-Redskins: Mike Wise bottles Jon Jansen's whine about getting cut by Snyder. The team's press release at the time of Jansen's release made it sound like he died comfortably, surrounded by friends and family. The warm and fuzzy vibe ain't nowhere in Wise's fine piece.

***

Nats lose. Big. All the hopes and dreams fans had for the team for those few days in late July 2009 are gone.

Football season?

***

Just hours after President Obama met with Henry Louis Gates and James Crowley at the White House in hopes of converting the brouhaha into a brew-haha, TruthAboutIt reminds us of one of pre-Post-Racial America's funnest pastimes:  Mocking whitey on the basketball court.

The level of racial profiling in Cambridge ain't nothing compared to the amount of profiling on the hardwood.

Truth About It (inspired by a racially charged tweet from the street's favorite white blogger, the Great Dan Steinberg) awesomely provides a list of all the caucasians who've worn a Bullets/Wizards uniform in the last quarter century. And damn if they don't make the case for color. My only problem with this list, and I think Lou Dobbs is with me on this, is it includes foreigners. You take out the Eastern euros, and there's really nobody who ever made a contribution, save Tom Gugliotta. And even with Gugliotta — I'm sure Lou's with me here, too — that last name ain't American.

(So, will  John Stockton will be the last American whitey NBA All-Star? Discuss.)

***

Another milestone on the Road to Ripken yesterday, with the disclosure that David Ortiz, the beloved, wholesome, no-way-he's-a-cheater Red Sox slugger, tested positive for steroids in 2003 with more than 100 other Major Leaguers. Ortiz gave his "I did not have sexual relations with that woman!" speech many times over the years.

I totally get these guys taking steroids. I'll never get taking steroids and then doing interviews bragging about not doing steroids.

I gotta say, I wish it was Curt Schilling who got outted instead. I might start drinking again to celebrate when that day comes. Or maybe start taking steroids.

***

Jimmy Lange tried to escape Fairfax, but couldn't. On Sept. 26, Lange, who could be nicknamed the "Most Successful Junior Middleweight in Boxing History to Never Fight for a Title," will come back to Patriot Center, scene of his last seven fights, to meet Jonathan Reid. Tickets for Lange vs. Reid, priced from $30-$500, are now on sale.

Reid, like Lange, was a cast member on NBC's reality series, "The Contender." Lange has parlayed that appearance into several top-of-the-card fights before big crowds at the Patriot Center. In a previous fight, Reid lost to DC's own William Joppy, a onetime middleweight champ.

So how come Lange never fought Joppy?

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
...