First of all, please let me apologize for football having hijacked this site for the past few weeks. It's an exciting time for the Redskins, and as long as they keep winning, I'll keep praising the Football Gods. Personally, I hope it never ends.
Thanks be to the Football Gods, who, in their infinite wisdom, used the Redskins as their instrument to show how offense wins games, but defense wins championships. Granted, we haven't won the championship yet, but with only 120 yards in offense last Saturday, only our defense, or a spectacular miracle were going to let us win that game. I think we got a little of both, as luck was definitely on our side. Now we head to Seattle and face a well rested and pumped up Seattle team. The odds are stacked against us, but I know that the Football Gods will smile upon us and provide ample opportunities to take control. We just have to make the most of those opportunities.
Now that I've given the appropriate thanks and praise to the Football Gods (praise be!), I would like to take this time to address the team. Gather round gentlemen.
I know it's been a long season, and many of you are banged up, tired and running on fumes. Well, I feel for you, I really do, but we're not done yet. In a few weeks you'll have months and months to relax, get healthy again and get your energy back. For now, however, we still have a job to do, and we need to do it better than we've ever done it before.
I don't need to tell you that 120 yards of offense will going to cut it against the Seahawks, but I'm going to anyway. 120 yards will not cut it against the Seahawks. No way, no how. You are on the road, 3000 miles from home, against a team that is well rested, motivated, undefeated at home, and eager to break a twenty-two year long string of lost playoff appearances. If you don't think that string of losses is the biggest motivation for them this week, then you're fooling yourselves. Shaun Alexander is very pround of his MVP award, I"m sure, but I would bet hard cash that he'd give it up in a second to be remembered as the focal point of the offense that broke the post-season losing streak. Do not underestimate their motivation. Add to this a city that gets behind, in full force, whichever pro team of their's is in the playoffs and you face a daunting challenge.
But, just as history is working to keep the Seahawks from advancing, I believe that your history is working to help you advance. There are plenty of players on your squad, and on the Seahawks team, that will end up in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but you have the advantage of having one man on your squad who already is in the Hall of Fame. That man is Joe Gibbs. Just as you can not underestimate the motivation of the Seahawks, do not underestimate the intangibles that Gibbs brings to your game. I don't have to tell you about how this season has progressed. You lived it. I can tell you that the coaches in the NFL today that could have turned his team around in the manner that Gibbs has done are few and far between. One, Jon Gruden, you beat last week. The other stands on your sidelines every week. Take advantage of his presence and his experience.
I am not going to give the speech that points out how proud you should be despite the outcome. I don't want to give it, and you don't want to hear it. You know, just as I do, that there is only one outcome to this game. Winning. There are no other options, and we will accept no other outcome. Winning truly is the only thing. I will say, however, that you should know how incredibly exciting and fun it has been to be a Redskins fan these past 6 weeks. I'll admit, that, like many fans I'm sure, I was ready to give up on this team once we had gone 5-6. "I"m not wearing their jerseys anymore", I told my friend Mark. I was disgusted and downtrodden, as I'm sure you were. Despite my statements, come Sunday I found I was unable to make good on my promise and I wore the traditional burgundy and gold. Then you won, and won, and kept winning until you brought us here. In looking back, I'm glad I kept my faith, as I know that it wasn't misguided. I'm glad that you kept it too, because without it, we wouldn't be here. Know that we are behind you, the tens of thousands of fans who have waited years to see a team as talented as this one, compete in these games, at this time of year. On Saturday, if the game seems out of your reach, look to your teammates, look to your coaches, look to yourself, your faith, your training, and look to the stands, because even though they may be hard to see, the familiar colors will be there, specks of burgundy and gold in a sea of blue. They are there for you, to support you and revel with you in what we've done this year.
As I said, we're not done yet, not by a long shot. Let's get out there, stick to the plan, execute, tackle and keep these bastards from getting any farther. This is your game. Take it.
Redskins on 3.