Monday, November 1, 2010

The Chili-Moss Scandal

The happiest guy in the world right now is Mike Shanahan. He is jumping for joy that the Chili-Moss scandal has eclipsed the Sun, nearly blotted out his benching of Donovan McNabb in an otherwise winnable game.

Right now I am shaking my head and chuckling. So this is how it all ends, aye Chili? A memo to the Viking organization: The next time you would like to simply discard a 3rd round pick for no particular reason, please give my Rams a call. We could use another 3rd rounder. You just might draft another Joe Montana with a pick like that.

I have disliked Chili several years now. Why? Because I have hated the way responds to being on the hot seat. Clearly, Chili has been very sensitive to all suggestions that he is on the hotseat. He has been moved to action by most of these suggestions, and not good actions either. Rather than sticking to a logical and scientific program of team building, he has been blow around the field by every gust of media wind. He has made a lot of dysfunctional, short-term, short-sighted decisions as a result of this perceived pressure.

Chasing an old man like Favre all over the planet? Letting him skip training camp and practice? Starting the dude when he is clearly wounded as hell? Making a trade for dysfunctional dude like Moss? I just don't like it. Now the moment Moss appears to be critical of Chili, he reverses his field and cuts Moss. Jesus Christ! You want to talk about a paranoid move?!?! Stupid…

I don't like the way Chili responds to pressure. Have some balls and deal with the heat. Chuck Noll would have just kept right on drilling his boys on the fundamentals. Don Shula would not altered course as a result of the hot seat. Even the professor Bill Walsh would have sacked up and dealt with it. In short, Chili just doesn't act like one of the greats. He's got no pipe and humming bird sack, as Jim Rome used to say.

Being sensitive to every little comment about your job status and taking one short-sighted decision after another to cling to your job (like monkey clinging to a sparkly little fake jewel) is a sure-fire recipe for disaster. You are not going to make good, solid, sound combat maneuvers if you are being motivated in this way.

Clearly, the 2010 season is the breakdown phase of the Childress-Viking epoch. As Michael Lombardi suggests, that epoch might come to a close as soon as Tuesday afternoon. For the good of the Vikings, I hope so. Why does anyone suspect this? Because Chili has roster rights written into his contract. He can add and cut players as he pleases without consulting senior management. He said he was going to waive Moss this morning. It didn't happen this afternoon. Apparently, Chili is in some hot water with the high command. I think his job is in maximum jeopardy right now.

I am no kind of Viking fan, but I have friends who are. It is difficult watching these guys suffer in state similar too the one I lived through when the Rams hired Scott Linehan. Linehan was another one of these clingy, short-sighted, defensively-postured coaches who was worried about his job. You all know how that ended. It was an all out-disaster. It was the death of the Greatest Show on Turf.

All of this feels a hell of a lot like the end of Scott Linehan. For those who don't know, Linehan lost the Rams by benching Bulger, trying to release Torry Holt, and alienating his defensive coordinator Jim Hasslet. All of these were exceedingly stupid moves at the time, and they were motivated by Linehan's fear of the Ax. He was responding to suggestions that he had lost control of the team and was on the hot-seat for a lack of performance. When Linehan attempted to release Holt, the Axman dropped the edge on his neck, and it was over. We may see the very same scenario playout with Childress in the next 24 hours.