Redskins announce Gruden as new head coach - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Redskins announce Gruden as new head coach


The Washington Redskins introduced Jay Gruden as their next head coach at a press conference Thursday.

Gruden was offensive coordinator for the Cincinnati Bengals and will replace Mike Shanahan as head coach. He is the brother of Jon Gruden, former head coach of Oakland Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Washington Redskins general manager Bruce Allen has said the team's next head coach will not have the all-encompassing role held by Shanahan.

Shanahan was fired after the team finished 3-13 this season and 24-40 over the past four years.

"Redskins fans deserve a better result," Owner Dan Snyder said after firing Shanahan. "We thank Mike for his efforts on behalf of the Redskins. We will focus on what it takes to build a winning team, and my pledge to this organization and to this community is to continue to commit the resources and talent necessary to put this team back in the playoffs."

Shanahan had one year remaining on his five-year, $35 million contract.

News of Jay Gruden's hire quickly spread across Central Virginia Thursday.

Those cheering on the Redskins say they can't wait to see if a new coach can turn around the team's record.

Especially since the skins train in Richmond, many in the area say they just want to see the team do well. Overwhelmingly, many seemed to welcome the news.

At the Refuge for Men Hair Salon in Richmond - the new head coach is the talk of the day.

"Shanahan was not getting the job done," said Carmine Dimaro.

"I think they needed some new blood in there," Harry Reid added.

Apparently - team managers agreed confirming Thursday - Jay Gruden, who last worked with the Cincinnati Bengals, will take over as head coach for Washington. The move comes after the team only won 3 games last season.

"That's not much to cheer for so I think people are excited for something new," said Alex Howard who works at Hometeam Grill.

The restaurant saw a boost in business last year with the addition of the new Redskins Training Camp in Richmond. The camp brought a 10.5 million dollar economic impact to the area.

"They'd stop here for lunch. We had Darryl Green in here doing a Q&A with fans. It was great for us over the summer," Howard said.

"Everybody's curious. It's something new. You get a new player or a new coach, you're always excited. It gives everybody I think a reason to be optimistic," Bob Weirup added.

With former coach Mike Shanahan now out of the picture, all eyes now watching with high hopes - Gruden will turn things around.

"I think he took the Bengals from a team no one had really heard about to a team that was doing very well this past season so I don't see why not. I think he will do better than Shanahan did," Dimaro said.

Those are sentiments shared not just by football fans, but also area businesses that benefit from a home team making the grade.

"When they're doing well, we're doing well because people are excited to show their support," Howard said.

When when news first broke of the training camp coming to Richmond, there was a mixture of excitement and controversy. Now that it's here, many are saying Central Virginia is now invested in seeing the team through.

The team's owner thanked Shanahan for serving but now says he's focusing on building a winning team.

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