Washington Redskins Lack Leadership in Locker Room


Nov 2, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden looks on during the third quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium. The Vikings defeated the Redskins 29-26. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

When a player who was cut from his former team for character issues stands up during a full-team meeting to rally the troops around a franchise quarterback, you know there is a lack of leadership in that clubhouse.

Well, Redskins fans, this lack of leadership is in your clubhouse!

According to a report from the Associated Press, DeSean Jackson stood up at the end of a full-team meeting before the team’s bye week and told his teammates that they all needed to be behind head coach Jay Gruden’s decision to start Robert Griffin III over Colt McCoy.

More from All Over The Hill

In the two weeks prior to the Minnesota game, McCoy took the Redskins into Dallas and beat the Cowboys a week after replacing Kirk Cousins against the Titans and helping the team to a victory.

Multiple media outlets previously reported that not everyone on the team was sold on RGIII getting the nod to start at Minnesota over McCoy.

It appears Jackson noticed the rift, and took it to himself to get everybody on the same page.

While this is what you want from a star player, what he told reporters on Monday is concerning – he wishes that there were more vocal leaders in the locker room.

While there are a number of reasons that the Washington Redskins are 3-6 – key injuries, new coaches and systems – it’s been clear since the season started that there was a lack of leadership in the locker room.

Although some of the reports about dysfunction with the Redskins may not be true – i.e. RGIII “alienating himself” – teams with strong leadership often don’t let reporters get the sense there may be a rift in the locker room.

You never hear about Tom Brady or Bill Belichick losing other members of the Patriots or Peyton Manning not having everyone on the same page in Denver and in Indy.

Or even when the Green Bay Packers have gotten off to slow starts, nobody has been questioning the leadership or Aaron Rodgers and Mike McCarthy. You hear that they may not have all the pieces everybody thought they did at one point.

But when there is a lack of leadership in a locker room, you know it.

You see it in Chicago. Not everybody believes in Jay Cutler and Marc Trestman. In Oakland, nobody believes in the ownership and front office. San Francisco has been under-performing the entire season, and you hear reports constantly that Jim Harbaugh doesn’t have control of the team.

Oct 12, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Washington Redskins wide receiver Pierre Garcon (88) and wide receiver DeSean Jackson (11) against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Cardinals defeated the Redskins 30-20. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

And then you hear it in Washington.

But maybe Jackson calling out his teammates is a step in the right direction. Maybe the locker room needed a fire lit under them and for somebody to step up and tell the team, “this is the plan and we all need to be behind it 100 percent. No questions asked.”

Jackson has a vocal past and can certainly step into this role. but he’ll need others to step up. And if RGIII can become a team leader many envisioned he could be when he was drafted, things should definitely turn around in Washington.

But until that happens, it’ll be tough sledding in the nation’s capital.