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Monday, October 19, 2009
Tough task for Sherm Lewis

By Kevin Seifert
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com’s Kevin Seifert

You never like to see people put in an impossible position to succeed, but that’s my overwhelming feeling after seeing longtime NFC North/Central friend Sherman Lewis named Washington’s new playcaller.

Lewis has been the offensive coordinator in Green Bay (1992-99), Minnesota (2000-01) and Detroit (2003-04). For all the good things he did during his career, especially in Green Bay, many people would agree that play-calling wasn’t one of them.

Packers coach Mike Holmgren called plays during most of Lewis’ tenure there. Lewis’ brief role as a playcaller under Ray Rhodes in 1999 did not go well, as Jason Reid of the Washington Post points out. And a few of you might remember that in 2001, then-Vikings coach Dennis Green once stripped Lewis of play-calling duties in the middle of a game at Chicago.

And as crazy as it sounds, those situations were much more conducive to success than what Lewis is stepping into now. Taking over an offense after two weeks as a consultant -- and as a result of a front office ultimatum to head coach Jim Zorn -- is a recipe for disaster. I just hope Lewis doesn’t catch the brunt of the blame in Washington if (and when) this experience turns sour.