Tag:Jim Haslett
Posted on: October 11, 2010 6:29 pm

Haslett making a difference

Give big props to Redskins defensive coordinator Jim Haslett. His defense bounced back from a disaster at St. Louis two weeks ago with two strong performances against two good offenses.

The Redskins shut down both Philadelphia and Green Bay the past two weeks. Against the Packers, Haslett's unit held the Packers to thee points in the second half.

Haslett has another big challenge this week: Peyton Manning and the Colts.

If he can continue to get the Redskins defense to play the way it is, he just might get another shot at being a head coach, which I think he deserves.


Category: NFL
Tags: Jim Haslett
Posted on: January 15, 2009 10:02 pm
Edited on: January 15, 2009 10:04 pm

Haslett Hosed

When the St. Louis Rams ownership  came to Jim Haslett this past season and told him they wanted him to take over on an interim basis after Scott Linehan was fired, Haslett, then the team's defensive coordinator, was reluctant to do so.

They told him if he did, he'd have a chance to take over on a full-time basis. So he agreed.

Now he's out of work. Now he wished he didn't take it.

Haslett was told Thursday that he would not be named the team's new head coach. He was told he was part of the old, and it was time to move forward.

The Rams are making a mistake. Haslett was the right man for the job. That doesn't mean I'm killing the guy they do hire -- and word is it's either Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier or Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Jason Garrett -- but the players liked Haslett and he deserved a chance to show what he could do with his players.

He took over a talent-depleted roster and led it to two victories in his first two games. That was strictly emotion-fed performance. That was a sign of the coach doing his job.

It fell apart after that because the Rams lacked talent. Not coaching. Haslett is a feisty coach who knows how to push and pull at the right times.

Now he's looking for work.

"I don't know what I'm going to do," he said Thursday night. "I thought I had a real shot here."

The interesting thing is had he not taken the job on an interim basis, his future would have been better for it.

Most will look at him as a two-time loser as a head coach. That isn't fair. The circumstances he had to deal with in New Orleans -- see Hurricane Katrina -- would have tried any coach. And, by the way, he did have success there.

As for his Rams tenure, it was too short-lived. The guy deserved better.




Category: NFL
Tags: Jim Haslett
Posted on: December 31, 2008 7:10 pm

Give Haslett the job

The St. Louis Rams are conducting a search for a new head coach and the reality is the best candidate is right there in their building.
It's Jim Haslett.
Give the man the job. The players want him. They even put together a petition asking the team to hire him. That's bizarre, but noteworthy.
 Word is new general manager Billy Devaney likes him. So why not just pick Haslett? He had success in New Orleans as their head coach and it only really went bad when he had to deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Nobody could have succeeded in those conditions.
If he takes over in St. Louis, he’ll change the way they play to a more run-oriented, physical team. Don't go through with the charade. Give Haslett the job.
He knows when to push and pull with the players. Don't think that petition means he's lovey-dovey with his players. He'll get on them.
He fined running back Antonio Pittman $25,000 when he missed a walk-through the night after his birthday party.


Quick hits

---The NFL's All-Pro teams will be announced soon and I have a pet peeve. I hate that they don't break down the offensive line spots to left and right. I guarantee you there will be two left tackles named to the All-Pro team. That's stupid.

Do you play that way?

The All-Pro tackles should be Tennessee's Michael Roos on the left side and Denver Ryan Harris on the right side. It is true there are many more quality candidates on the left side, and Denver's left tackle Ryan Clady is a better player than Harris, but do it the right way.

It's the same for the guards, although you'll probably see Minnesota left guard Steve Hutchinson and New York Giants right guard Chris Snee named to the team. That's the right way.

I wish they would change that.

---Will Mike Shanahan be working in 2009? You bet. He will get a job somewhere -- if he wants it. I respect Shanahan greatly as a coach. But the team that hires him needs to make sure he doesn't have personnel say.

---The Jaguars are giving final personnel say to new vice president of player personnel Gene Smith. That is the right thing to do. Smith needs to have that power. There should be no more dividing up that power.

---I like the idea that New England Patriots vice president of player personnel Scott Pioli is ready to leave the team. It's his time to cash in big time. He's ready to show that he can do it without Bill Belichick. I don't personally know Pioli, but other personnel people that I do know speak highly of him. They say he's ready for the chance to rebuild a team. He will have his choice. The Browns want him. The Chiefs want him.

---One name on the Chiefs list of potential candidates that is interesting to me is Eric DeCosta, the director of college scouting for the Baltimore Ravens. He's a sharp talent evaluator, which you need to turn things around. Another name that should be on that list is Steve Keim, the Arizona Cardinals director of player personnel.



Category: NFL
Tags: Jim Haslett
Posted on: September 29, 2008 10:51 am

Monday Musings


With Scott Linehan out as coach of the St. Louis Rams and Jim Haslett in as interim coach, a lot of speculation is on whether Haslett is the right man for the role.

The answer is yes.

I've always believed Haslett got the shaft in New Orleans when he was fired as coach of the Saints, and deserved another shot to be a head coach. This isn't the ideal situation, but Haslett has faced many challenges before as a coach.

He was the man who coached the Saints in their season without a home when Hurricane Katrina displaced them.

Many of the Saints players I talked to back them credited Haslett with getting them through those tough times. They marveled at his work ethic and passion for the job, doing the trivial things to help get them through, such as finding a dog sitter for one player's dog. He lost 20 pounds that season, yet kept his team playing hard. I visited him in San Antonio that year and he couldn't believe all the little things he had to do just to play games on Sunday.

They practiced on a high- school field and fans gathered to watch. Hoping to get some privacy, Haslett told the staff he wanted to put up something to keep the fans from watching. Don't do it the fans told him. Why, he asked?

"The gangs will take it down," he was told.

He practiced without it. How many coaches would handle that?

Haslett cares. He cares about his players and he cares about the game. He will bring that same type of drive and dedication to being the interim coach of the Rams. The players there like him -- a lot. During their workouts this summer with the Titans, I spoke to Rams safety O.J. Atogwe and he raved about Haslett. You could see the respect the players had for Haslett after the practice as they came over to him seeking advice and counseling.

Haslett's defense has struggled in a big way this year, but that's because it lacks players, not a good leader.

If Haslett can turn this team around in the final 12 games, he deserves a chance to be the head coach next season and beyond. If he does get that chance, it's time for the Rams to help him with a proper personnel department. Jay Zygmunt, who makes the personnel decisions, really isn't a football man. Word is Haslett and Zygmunt don't get along since Haslett is such a strong-minded coach.

The Rams are a mess. Here's betting that Haslett gets them playing better. If so, the Rams might have their next coach,

One thing's a certainty: Nobody will outwork him.

Quick hits

---They said Derrick Brooks was done. He heard it, too. But Brooks, one of the league's classiest players, showed Sunday he's far from done. He had three interceptions and a forced fumble in the Bucs' victory over Green Bay. At 35, he can still play. "I know it's still in me," Brooks said. "I still have a lot of football in me, contrary to what some believe." He's not as swift as he once was, but that's to be expected. But Brooks can still play at a high level.

---Tampa Bay's passing game is way too horizontal. It's time the threaten more down the field. It's painful to watch a quarterback throw 5 yards to a receiver on third-and-15 and ask the receiver to do the rest. For all his reputation as an offensive wizard, Jon Gruden sure seems to have trouble throwing the ball down the field.

---What's not to like about watching the New Orleans Saints play? Drew Brees has thrown for 1,343 yards in four games. That puts him on a pace for 5,372 yards. That would break the single-season record of 5,084 yards set by Dan Marino in 1984.

---If you're looking for an early-season Pro Bowl left tackle take a look at Khalif Barnes of the Jacksonville Jaguars. To open the season, Barnes has been matched up against Kyle Vanden Bosch, Aaron Schobel, Dwight Freeney and Mario Williams. All four of those players have been to the Pro Bowl in the past two seasons. They've had 60 sacks in the past two seasons. Barnes gave up one in the four games, that a bad blown cut-block on Vanden Bosch. It couldn't come at a better time for Barnes, who is in the final year of his contract.

---Nobody can block Albert Haynesworth of the Tennessee Titans. He has five sacks from a down tackle spot. That's sensational. He's on a pace for 20. That would break the record for sacks by a defensive tackle, which is 18. Keith Millard set that record in 1980 with the Minnesota Vikings.

---The Tampa Bay offensive line, one of the better young units in the league, has gone two games without allowing a sack. They do have a quick passing game, which makes it hard to get to Brian Griese, but that's still impressive. The last time a Tampa Bay line went two weeks without giving up a sack was in 2005.

---Even though he fumbled a punt Sunday night, it's clear that Eagles rookie DeSean Jackson is a budding star. He can fly. When he came out of Cal last spring, the word on him was he was a diva. Even so, I ranked him high on my list of receivers. I loved the kid, even though he was small. Now he looks like a steal for the Eagles. Speed kills, guys. No track speed. Football speed. Jackson has it.



Category: NFL
Tags: Jim Haslett
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