Butterflies in the Desert

It's official. The Arizona desert is now plush with Green. The Darrell Green crew has arrived!

Here's my quick Super Bowl weather update: The skies are clear, but the temperatures are hanging in the disappointing 60s, especially for northeasterners. Oh, and there's another very interesting phenomenon going on out here. As one who really enjoys and appreciates the outdoors -- you know, plants, insects, stuff like that -- it's been quite weird that as pretty as the flowers and foliages are out here, all of the butterflies seem to be nesting right here in my stomach. Go figure.

Yesterday I finally figured out when and where I was the first (and probably only) time I felt like this. It was 25 years ago, when I was waiting on my name to be called in the 1983 NFL draft. And, yep, there is one big similarity in the two moments -- butterflies in my stomach! And, just like back then, anything I could do to influence the decision had long been done. In this case, all you, me and my family can do is wait! That's fine. I just need a little help with the waiting part. LOL

Finally, I would like to wrap up today's thoughts with a little Redskins update. The family and I accepted a gracious invitation for dinner with Dan and Tonya Snyder and others last night. For the record, I haven't been in a conversation with Dan -- if my memory doesn't fail me -- in at least nine months to a year. But last night as I listened to him talk with such passion about his strategic vision for the team, I would like to reiterate the point I made in my blog post of two days ago, when I referenced "The Dirty Dozen," and said, "...each man was picked individually and with a specific skill for a specific task to meet the team's goal."

I went on to say that if I was right and that's what the Redskins were doing, that I applauded their decision because it eliminates anyone's ability to hide. Well, I was right! That's exactly what they're doing! They want the coaching staff to be held accountable for their individual performance. They don't want to hire some superstar head coach with his own supporting cast of coaches who can hide behind their friendship and history with the head coach. It's just what I suspected. It makes sense, and I agree with that decision 100 percent.

Now, what do you think? Good or bad, I want to hear from you.

Editors' note: Green's blog also appears at DarrellGreen.com.

By Darrell Green |  February 1, 2008; 12:11 PM ET
Previous: Making the Trip -- With Children | Next: Waiting for the Results

Comments

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darrell,
don't you think the head coach should be held accountable for staffing decisions? he is going to need to work with these guys closely all the time. isn't it better for the coach to pick his guys? i feel like the head coach will head into this situation handcuffed.

best of luck on saturday (don't think you'll need it).

Posted by: eze | February 1, 2008 12:17 PM

Darrell,
No need for butterflies. I have no doubt that you are a lock as a first-year-eligible inductee. I just hope that you have the pleasure to be enshrined with an old friend (who also should have been a first-year man!).

Hall of Fame Enshrinement tickets went on sale at 11:00am.
Isn't that just like the NFL to put them on sale the day BEFORE the inductees are selected.

I bought my four. However, those seats will be empty if Art is not selected (Sorry, Darrell, I made myself a promise never to go to that place without Mr. Monk).

How great it would be to see you both get in together!

Tickets are available at the Pro Football Hall of Fame website.

ArtMonkHOF'08

Posted by: youcrew | February 1, 2008 12:41 PM

Darrel - Like just about everyone else, I'm thinkning you're a first ballot enshrinee... but I still wish you good luck. I would hope that #81 goes with you... I cannot think of two more respected men, and Redskins... and going together would be that much more special I am sure.

The "but" is this... if Mr. Monk is again given a disservice by the voters,
PUH-LEEZE stump for #81 in your acceptance speech.

God Bless -

Posted by: SkinzLifer | February 1, 2008 1:35 PM

Darrell, it's been great reading your thoughts on this blog. I can't wait to see what you have to say on Saturday! Hopefully Redskins fans will be planning to invade Canton, OH come August to support the enshrinement of Green, Monk and Grimm.

I also wanted to share with you that you once attended a youth league basketball game of mine many many years ago with Art Monk (I was playing against his son). It's a moment that I'll always remember, having the opportunity to compete in front of two great athletes and HOF people after years of having the pleasusre of watching them compete for the Skins. Thanks for the memory!

Posted by: Gibby | February 1, 2008 2:40 PM

Darrell, the moment you are enshrined in the Hall of Fame, I will book a trip to Canton. You were wonderful to watch for many years and you are an even better person.
A tip: If you really like the outdoors, check out the Desert Botanical Gardens while you're in Phoenix. It's beautiful. I never knew there were so many types of cacti!

Posted by: Jasonpeak | February 1, 2008 4:03 PM

Darrell, thanks for doing this blog. It's great to hear from my favorite Redskin of all time.

Doesn't your "Dirty Dozen" theory of hiring place too little emphasis on relationships and chemistry among the coaching staff? We hear all the time how chemistry among the players is vital to creating a winning team, so wouldn't that apply to the coaches as well?

Posted by: SF Skins Fan | February 1, 2008 4:07 PM

Hi, DG!

Thanks so much for being a bright spot among this uncertainty in Redskins Nation. Your blog is fascinating and eloquent, and I can't wait to hear the announcement tomorrow that you're getting inducted in August. My sister and I, Skins fans since we were little kids, have already planned a trip to Canton to watch you get enshrined in person.

I think you make some valid points about Snyder's strategy in the head coaching search. I think it's great that they are shying away from the "superstar head coach" mentality that seems to have been the organization's MO since Gibbs retired the first time around. But I can't help but wonder if hiring a head coach after installing a staff might produce some friction, at least at the outset, that could be avoided should the head coach be consulted on those hires.

Regardless of who the coach is, though, I think the biggest thing the Redskins must change if they want to succeed is their personnel mentality. They just can't go about trading away draft picks helter-skelter like they have in the Snyder era. Free agency can be a blessing, particularly in adding one or two players that might put you "over the top," so to speak. But you have to build the core of your team from the draft. The teams you see succeeding in both conferences are evidence of that.

That said, I hope that you are right in your optimism, and for the moment, we've got no reason to doubt you! Enjoy your time in Arizona, and I'll be toasting in your honor tomorrow night after your induction becomes official!

Posted by: Kristin | February 1, 2008 4:28 PM

Darrell, Good Luck tomorrow with the HOF- you deserve it. I hope that Art and Russ can get the same respect. With response to the new coach, whoever they hire, we as fans must support. Hopefully they can continue to improve and win another SB

Posted by: Paul | February 1, 2008 6:02 PM

Darrell you are making that KoolAid sound delicious I think I might just have to have a glass myself... and for the record, the dirty dozen has always been one of my favorite movies.

Posted by: JustinBaker | February 1, 2008 6:26 PM

Hey Darrell! Forget the butterflies and enjoy the process! I have faith that you will be a first vote induction into the Hall of Fame.

In the meantime......I'm confused as to why Daniel Snyder is consumed with "holding" a specific person responsible? For wins and losses? I assume responsibility for winning and losing would be the headcoach's area unless total control is out the window at Redskins Park. Who's hiding and from what? Identifying who is responsible seems clear to me when it comes to the football field.

Have fun in Arizona! Enjoy nature's butterflies. Hail!

Posted by: Smiley67 | February 1, 2008 7:54 PM

Darrell - Thanks for all the memories! I was at your final game at FedEx -- will never forget the excitement when you almost took that kickoff reverse to the house! Of course, there are many legendary moments in your career where you did take it to the house (or make big INT or caught Dorsett)...

I have felt that folks have been too tough on Dan Snyder the past few years. Bringing in Gibbs was a tremendous move by him, and he was pretty hands off. His coach search has been disappointing, and I thought sticking with Gregg Williams would really build on Gibbs' foundation. Keeping Blanche does maintain some of that foundation. Bottom line: I hope you are right and it works out.

Posted by: Wolf | February 1, 2008 8:02 PM

Darrell - Thanks for all the memories! I was at your final game at FedEx -- will never forget the excitement when you almost took that kickoff reverse to the house! Of course, there are many legendary moments in your career where you did take it to the house (or make big INT or caught Dorsett)...

I have felt that folks have been too tough on Dan Snyder the past few years. Bringing in Gibbs was a tremendous move by him, and he was pretty hands off. His coach search has been disappointing, and I thought sticking with Gregg Williams would really build on Gibbs' foundation. Keeping Blanche does maintain some of that foundation. Bottom line: I hope you are right and it works out.

Posted by: Wolf | February 1, 2008 8:04 PM

I just wanted to say, first ballot or no first ballot you have been an honorable man for as long as I've had the opportunity to witness your speed (tootsie roll induced or not) in person way back at RFK.

Thank you for all the memories, but thank you even more for the example you have led for all the young Redskins fans.

It means a lot more to have great players that we can respect at the end of the day than just to have great players.

I'll be rooting you on tomorrow.

Hail to the Redskins!

Posted by: bhayesp | February 1, 2008 10:08 PM

Darrell,
Love hearing from you. God bless you and your family. If Art Monk does not get elected with you, Please make a passionate plea in your Hall of Fame speech on his behalf. Thank you for your continued community service
.

Posted by: hal | February 1, 2008 10:59 PM

Hi Darrell... long time fan here.

I'm not 100% sure I agree with your assessment of what Snyder is doing especially since we're talking accountability. The reason for that is that the head coach isn't as accountable as he should be and it creates an environment whereby he can always use as an excuse for not getting the job done.

The ultimate in accountability would be for the head coach to pick his own staff (and I wouldn't be so sure that this isn't the case as I believe they know who the head is right now) putting him in control of them and making him totally accountable for the team's performance.

The other scenario of individuals reporting directly to the GM/Owner creates an environment where they can control what happens with the team and I think that is a very very very bad concept. I mean...afterall.... Where has it every worked before?

Posted by: RYokum | February 2, 2008 7:21 AM

The only one that should have butterflies is any Hall of Fame voter that did not vote for you. Without Art and without any Hogs, the Hall of Fame should already be ashamed. You will only add class and a role model to the existing members.

Posted by: BD | February 2, 2008 12:04 PM

The head coach should be selecting his staff and making them accountable, not the owner. This staff got their jobs from the owner and the new head coach will never have the support he needs to build a team. Only Joe Gibbs and the death of a teammate got them focused this year. They won't be able to do that next year. Why do we have to go through this over and over? Doesn't anyone ever learn anything over there? New coaches start 0 and 5 or 1 and 5 (after winning the first game) are we ready for that again?

Posted by: RJ | February 2, 2008 12:10 PM

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