Vinny Cerrato speaks
Vinny Cerrato, the Redskins’ executive VP of football operations, just met with reporters to for a sort-of state-of-the-team interview session. Here’s the entire exchange for you. Judge for yourself:
Q: Broadly, the first seven weeks, how would you assess everything?
VC: Frustrating and disappointing with 2-5. That’s not where we expected to be. Disappointed. I know Dan is disappointed for the fans. Everybody is disappointed for the fans. We need to regroup during this bye and come out during those last nine games and improve.
Q: Are you surprised by the lack of production by the back-ups on the offensive line?
VC: Are you talking about all the sacks and stuff?
Q: Yeah, I’m talking about everything.
VC: Such as?
Q: Such pass poor pass protection. Many players today have said that you didn’t address the line. You knew it was a problem and you didn’t address it. People around the league are saying it’s one of the worst lines in the league. All that.
VC: Who is people around the league?
Q: People on other teams. Commentators on TV. They say you haven’t addressed the line.
VC: We tried to address the line. We added [Derrick] Dockery. We added Mike Williams. We attempted to, and when we were in the draft, there was nobody at No. 13 worthy of it. Are you having the results you wanted to? No, we don’t want to have sacks. So if it was Chris Samuels and Randy Thomas in there, would it be better? Absolutely. If you lose a Pro Bowler, it’s definitely going to drop off. I guess where we’re standing right now, to have more depth would be great.
Q: Is it too early to say that the line is going to be the team’s main target in the offseason?
VC: It’s too early to tell.
Q: Did you think that the depth was acceptable going into the season.
VC: Yeah. I mean, look at the depth around the league. Nobody has a Pro Bowler to back up a Pro Bowler. Look at Philadelphia last week when Jason Peters went out. They had six sacks against the Raiders. When you lose some quality people, there is a dropoff. So I’m not making excuses, we have to do better.
Q: You had to think there was no way you were going to get 16 games out of Chris Samuels and Randy Thomas considering they had double surgeries in the offseason?
VC: With Randy we anticipated, you know, not going 16 games. So we anticipated that part.
Q: Did changing play-callers produce results you wanted to see?
VC: We didn’t win but I thought that Sherm [Lewis] provided a spark and I think that the offense did some good things. I think Fred [Davis] and Devin [Thomas] got a chance to do some things offensively. I think coming in and having to face the, what, third-ranked defense that blitzes all the time and do all those things, I thought he did a good job with the amount of time he had. I thought he did an excellent job.
Q: How would you asses Jason Campbell at this point?
VC: I think this: I think we’re 2-5. I think we’ve got to get better in a lot of areas. With Jason, he has got to be consistent. That’s the thing with Jason-consistency.
Q: A lot has been made about Jim [Zorn's] job security over the next nine weeks. Do you feel like you’re job is on the line, as well?
VC: I feel like my job is on the line all the time, you know? It’s not something that I really worry about. My job is to get us going and fill these holes when guys get hurt. Things take care of themselves after the season. I don’t worry about those things.
Q: Do you feel you gave Jim a roster that could get to the playoffs?
Q: You do feel that way?
Q: Is this as bleak as you remember it to be since you’ve been here?
VC: Um, probably the most frustrating that it has been. I think probably because of the inability to score points is what made it frustrating.
Q: Why did you wait until last Friday to say that Jim is going to be the head coach for the rest of the season?
VC: Like I said last night with Sal Paolantonio, we anticipated winning the Kansas City game at home and being 3-3. That’s what I meant. So I think that after that game and we’re changing the play-caller and we sat down and got our gameplan together and that’s why it was on Friday.
Q: It took you the whole week to get your gameplan together and decide to stick with Jim for the rest of the season?
VC: Yeah. We sat down and talked about it. We were doing the play-caller thing. I mean, so yeah.
Q: How will you evaluate the coaching staff over the last nine games?
VC: We’ve just got to look at everybody. We’ve got to look at everything. I’ve got to look at myself. We’ve got to look at everybody. You know what you’ve got to do? You’ve got to get better day-to-day, week-to-week. And that’s what it’s about. It’s about improving each game. It’s one game at a time, one day at a time. In practice improve fundamentally, and in each game we’ve got to improve and win games.