One of the funniest recurring bits on Twitter in recent weeks is that on practically any Washington Redskins-related tweet, multiple fans will reply with #FireBruceAllen. It could be a tweet about something that has absolutely nothing to do with the Redskins president. Still, you’ll see #FireBruceAllen.
The Redskins have proven over and over (and over and over) again that they don’t have a great feel for what their fans want. So it really wasn’t a surprise at all when the Redskins said that Allen is getting a bigger role. In addition to overseeing football operations, he’ll run the business side of the franchise too, according to Les Carpenter of the Washington Post.
Not that teams should make moves based on social media hashtag revolutions, no matter how pervasive they are, but it’s telling that the Redskins took the target of the fans’ scorn and gave him a promotion.
Bruce Allen safe with the organization
To be clear, there was no chance the Redskins were going to fire Allen. No matter the outcry, the team had no thought to making a change.
“There was never any question about this,” Redskins senior vice president for communications Tony Wyllie told the Post. “Of course he’s coming back.”
Allen probably doesn’t deserve all of the negative attention he gets, but you can’t fire owner Daniel Snyder. Washington has made many missteps, on and off the field. The Redskins haven’t won a playoff game since the end of the 2005 season. They have made just three playoff appearances since then. Fans are tuning out the team. Washington struggled with ticket sales. Fans walked out of a late-season game against the Giants in droves. It’s an ugly scene.
And with that backdrop, Allen is getting a bigger role.
Allen has a tough challenge ahead
The Redskins tried to rework the business side of the organization, hiring respected Brian Lafemina as president of business operations and chief operating officer, among others. They fired three of their top officials in the business office after just seven months on the job. Allen oversaw the business operations before Lafemina was hired, so he’s familiar with that job.
Allen has been involved in the efforts to get the Redskins a new stadium, which is a reason he’s still on the job. That’s a major issue for Snyder and his team. As for the other parts of the business side, including winning back the fans, that will be a tough challenge for Allen given the negativity toward him from the fans.
If nothing else, there will be plenty more #FireBruceAllen references on Twitter. If that’s possible.
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