The Redskins entered the 2017 NFL season with expectations to look improved after an 8-win season the year before.
But; injuries & outright poor play saw them end up taking a step back, finishing the year 7-9 & missing the playoffs again.
It appears now we have an idea as to what may have happened, at least to the defense.
Apparently, star cornerback Josh Norman was inviting multiple teammates out to his house for rec time. Cards, pool, movies…just different things meant to help the bonding process.
Over time, team interest & attendance wained, & thus began the team’s downward turn.
Norman spoke with Kimberley Martin of the Washington Post & touched on what the turning point in the season was.
“That’s the frustrating part about it,” the Redskins star said in an interview, adding that the unit’s chemistry was “absolutely” disrupted when certain players “fell off” in attendance.
“Because if everybody’s all in on something, then you be all in. But if you’re not, then let us know. If you want to do something different, then we can do that. We can do it in however way you feel — but we will be together,” Norman stressed. “We will do things together.”
He went on to criticize some Redskins focus and commitment, though he didn’t name any names:
“We only get six months out the year of this. Then after that, you can do whatever the heck you want to do,” Norman said. “But when you’re in the season, be in the moment. This is what you get paid for.
“We want football players,” he added. “Guys that care about nothing but playing ball. That’s it. If they don’t want to be that, they’ve got other auditions or agendas, we’ll holla at you. This ain’t the place for you.”
For his part, linebacker Martrell Spaight agreed with Norman:
“For us to be successful, the biggest thing is we have to jell as a team. The more we jell as a team, the better we’re going to become out there on the football field. We showed signs earlier in the year when we were doing things [together], just camaraderie things, and we see it out there in our game play.”
I can see how things like blowing off one of the team leaders can contribute to negative things happening during the season, however; Terrelle Pryor not being able to catch a cold & Jordan Reed not being able to stay out of the training room definitely played huge parts as well.