After receiving the news that running back Clinton Portis will miss at least one month and possibly the entire season after breaking a bone in his hand during Sunday's lopsided loss at Philadelphia, Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder moved quickly. This morning, the Redskins signed Jets rusher Curtis Martin, football icon Jim Brown, and former Chicago Bulls great Michael Jordan to long-term contracts.
(l-r) Snyder, Cerrato, and Redskins
coach Joe Gibbs announce their big, big news.
Contract specifics were not immediately known, but team sources indicated the Redskins parted with up to 10 future first-round draft picks, and will make the trio the highest-paid backfield in league history. The group joins Ladell Betts, Rock Cartwright, Mike Sellers, and T.J. Duckett on the team's already deep running back core.
In a rare news conference, Snyder called the signings "a milestone for Redskins fans."
"We have one goal here," Snyder said. "Well, two goals actually. First, we want to win a Super Bowl. And secondly, we want to make money. Lots and lots of money. These three legendary players are sure to accomplish both in short order."
Brown, 70, has not played a down of competitive football since his retirement in 1966.
"Jim Brown is an absolute giant in his sport," Snyder said. "I asked [Owner lackey] Vinny [Cerrato] if Jim was available. Vinny said he was, and to me, it was a no-brainer. I told Vinny, 'let's do what it takes to go out and get him in a Redskins uniform.'"
When asked if the decision to sign Martin, who will miss the season and could retire due to chronic knee injuries, was somewhat short-sighted, Snyder grew testy.
"Let me turn the tables for just a moment, and ask you a question," Snyder said. "How much money do you make?"
When the reporter responded that he did not see how that was relevant, Snyder persisted.
"Seriously. How much? I know you people don't make that much. I'll be generous and say $50,000 a year. Well, the Redskins -- which I own -- are worth more than $1 billion. That is my worth. See this fingernail? I'm going to bite it off. One second. Okay, see it on the floor now? That's a $50,000 fingernail, easy. So basically, that's you. I literally just chewed you up and spit you out. So maybe we should think twice before we decide to wear the Daddy Pants, okay?
"Sure, all my pants are in boys sizes, but they're big metaphorically, dick."
It is unclear how Jordan, a former basketball player, fits into the Redskins' plans.
Redskins owner Daniel Snyder knows
Michael Jordan from the TV.
"He's one of the best to ever play the game," Snyder said with an incredulous chortle. "I'm sure we'll find a way to work him in. Look, I don't know what kind of rock you all have been living under, but hello? Michael Jordan? Ever heard of him? Is he or is he not a famous athlete that everyone has seen on TV a million times?"
"Yes," muttered some of the reporters.
"I can't hear you!" said Snyder.
"Thank you. Next question please. Jesus, you guys are nuts!"
The loss of Portis could affect the team's usual season plan, in which they go on a too-little, too-late winning streak after being virtually eliminated from the playoffs so that they can continue to string fans along and charge league-high prices.
"We're going to turn this team around," Snyder said. "Because if we don't, how do we justify $8,000 season tickets, $12 hot dogs, and $20 beers? Answer: we can't. I think the signings we've made today mark a new era in Redskins football. I wanted to put my stamp on this franchise, and I think I have accomplished that."
- Redskins Picked Apart [Washington Post]
- Portis breaks bone in hand [Washington Post]
- Jets' Curtis Martin will miss season [Yahoo! News]
- The $1 Billion Team [Forbes]
Technorati tags: Redskins, Washington Redskins