Tag Archives: Washington Redskins

Arsenio Hall, remember him? He's a Cleveland Browns fan, just like Vince Guerrieri.

2016 Washington Redskins vs. Cleveland Browns Q&A and prediction with Vince Guerrieri

The best free lance writer in Ohio1, editor and raconteur, Vince Guerrieri (not pictured)2 returns to talk about Cleveland sports. He stopped by this summer to talk about the Tribe (look for a mention at the end) as well as twice in 2012 to talk baseball and football. The Youngstown native is the author of Ohio Sports Trivia and The Blue Streaks and Little Giants: More Than a Century of Sandusky and Fremont Ross Football, a contributor to Belt Magazine and Tim Russert’s Wisdom of Our Fathers. Vince’s Facebook banner image:

License plate that says "WHY GOD" because, Cleveland Browns

WFY: Let’s just start off with this passage from our last football Q&A in 2012:

WFY: Do you find yourself thinking “oh, what might have been” with Robert Griffin III, drafted one spot before the Browns pick?

VG: Eh, a little, but I can’t find a whole lot of fault with Trent Richardson, who they got with the third overall pick. He’s a beast of a runner, and has good hands out of the backfield as well. I wasn’t entirely sold on the idea that Colt McCoy wasn’t the answer at quarterback, and really wasn’t happy the Browns burned a first-round pick on a 29-year-old. But Brandon Weeden’s arm strength – the main difference between him and Colt McCoy – has proven particularly valuable, as he’s thrown five long touchdown passes to Josh Gordon.

We were so young…

VG: Yeah we were.

Weeden still has decent arm strength, but that was never his problem. Mike Polk Jr.’s lasting contribution to being a Cleveland sports fan is the term “Factory of Sadness,” but I think his most insightful comment came here where he said Brandon Weeden was already staring down his receiver for the next week’s game (it’s true; I watched him do it in person). From there, we went to the Johnny Manziel experiment (my words at the time: It makes them more interesting, not better. Manziel actually got drafted with the pick they got from the Colts for Trent Richardson. I think that’s the definition of a Pyhrric victory. Now, we finally have RGIII, and I’m kind of thrilled about that, because at one point, there were rumors they’d deal for Colin Kaepernick (which would have been a complete fiasco).

Gordon will come back in Game 5. He’ll be the other player coming off a four-game suspension in that game (the Browns host the Patriots).

WFY: The Browns come into this game 0-3 which feels a lot worse than 1-2. They were in at least two of the games, from what I understand.

VG: Yeah, the Eagles thumped the Browns, thanks to Carson Wentz, who was taken with a draft pick the Browns traded to the Eagles. Admittedly, the Browns got a lot of draft picks from that deal, and who knows what they’ll turn into, but in the short term, it looks like the Browns completely screwed the pooch on that deal.

Then the Browns went up 20-0 to the Ravens before losing 25-20, and Josh McCown broke his collarbone, leading us to the Cody Kessler era earlier than anticipated. (True stat: Kessler was the fifth different quarterback in as many regular-season games used by the Browns.) Hue Jackson asked fans to trust him with that pick, and Kessler acquitted himself reasonably well against the Dolphins last week, but Cody Parkey, the kicker they signed off the street before the game, went 3-6, including shanking a potential game-winner before the Browns lost in overtime.

WFY: Apparently, Terrelle Pryor is the whole team right now which is interesting. I know that rookie Carl Nassib is also injured which is too bad, because he turned into an excellent defensive lineman at my alma mater. Are there enough healthy bodies on either side of the ball to be competitive this week? The Skins are not great, barely winning by two at the Meadowlands last week. I guess I’m putting in the prediction early in the Q&A.

VG: Pryor’s been a bright spot for the team sorely in need of one. He came to camp last year, made it through camp and then got cut to make room for an injured back-up running back claimed from Seattle (one of the reasons last year’s management is no longer with the team). They brought Pryor back late in the season, and he’s gone through another training camp and is starting to come into his own as a receiver — among other things. Last week, he had a game you really haven’t seen from a player since the 1950s, catching passes, throwing passes and even some rushing.

Nassib was one of those draft picks that everyone had high hopes for. The Browns have some success hitting on late-round picks and undrafted free agents. The trouble’s with top picks (there is a four-year span where none of the Browns first-round picks are with the team — and some aren’t even in the league). And Nassib did look good until he broke his hand. We’re all kind of hoping he gets back quickly.

There isn’t a lot of depth, and there isn’t a lot of talent. But the team’s showing improvement week-to-week. That said, I really think 0-16 is a legitimate possibility in Cleveland this year, so I imagine the Browns will find some way to not get out of their own way and lose 28-24.

WFY: Generally speaking, it’s been downhill since German investors Hans and Fritz were unable to buy the Browns after a bad power plant deal in 1991. Are things picking up under owner Jimmy Haslam?

VG: Jimmy Haslam’s taken a team that was a laughingstock of the league and made it WORSE, which is kind of impressive when you think about it.

But he’s making money hand over fist. Everything he’s done makes sense if you look at it as increasing the value of an undervalued asset. Since he’s bought the team, he’s

– raised ticket prices
– renovated the stadium (at taxpayer expense)
– changed the uniforms (we’ll get to that in a minute)
– added a drumline
– added more mascots

and done a host of things to improve the “fan experience.” The team? Not so much. He’s fired three head coaches and as many front offices. The team is terrible and the best-case scenario is that it will be for another two years after that.

And that’s the reckoning that had to happen. For the past five years, Browns fans have been conned or deluded themselves into believing that the team was only a couple pieces away, and a lot of people bit on that when they were 7-4 and leading the division in November 2014. But that was a mirage. A complete teardown is needed, and fans, unsurprisingly, are unhappy.

The good news is that for the first time probably since they hired Romeo Crennel, the Browns hired a coach that appeared to be in demand. Hue Jackson was well-respected as a coordinator and in a brief stint as a head coach, and was legitimately fielding other offers. Mike Pettine — whom I liked — was a desperation heave after the Browns threw Rob Chudzinski over the side — and he’d only been the coach for a year.

WFY: For all the turmoil inflicted on Cleveland fans, at least the Browns uniforms were classic, but not now, they’ve messed that up. I like the brown facemasks, but otherwise, just too much orange, even on the brown jerseys. The CLEVELAND on the jerseys are even okay, but TOO MUCH ORANGE overall. Are they just going to scrap them at the next possible opportunity and go back to the classic Browns look?
Cleveland Browns
Why would you mess this up, Haslam?

VG: Again, the uniform change makes sense when you’re looking at it as increasing value. That summer, Joe Haden had the top-selling jersey in the league — and the move was almost universally reviled. Before the new uniforms were released, the logo was changed, going to an almost traffic cone orange. (the joke in Cleveland is “the orange is oranger,” and you can even buy shirts to that effect: . The Orange Is Oranger – Unisex Crew

Johnny Manziel

The earliest the Browns can change the uniforms is 2019, per NFL rules. I’d be kind of surprised if they didn’t change it back to something resembling what it was before.

WFY: The Warriors blew a 3-1 lead.

VG: They certainly did. That will never get old. I might get it engraved on my tombstone.

WFY: You are in a mixed-marriage and your daughter is probably getting to be the age where, if she’s interested, she might be ready to choose a team. Is it looking Steelers or Browns? Are Steelers fans becoming more numerous in your hometown of Youngstown?

VG: I took her to Browns training camp this year (shoutout to my buddy Crin, who wanted to go), and she’s started asking me if we’re going to watch the Browns. There’s a part of me that’s kind of proud, but there’s a part of me that says to myself, “Oh, God, what have I done?”

My primary concern is that she’ll become a Bengals fan because of my father, the only Bengals fan in Trumbull County. He’s got a stuffed football that yells “TOUCHDOWN BENGALS!!” and Sammy has been known to do the same unprompted.

One of my Pittsburgh friends saw a picture we took in a Youngstown bar (the Draught House, as seen on A&E’s “City Confidential”) and was kind of amazed that there were Browns and Steelers paraphernalia on the walls. It’s like a demilitarized zone between the two cities — and there’s definitely a Steelers edge. How could there not be? The Browns don’t give a whole lot of people reason to root for them.

WFY: I almost forgot, but there was a Kevin Costner movie about the Browns, Draft Day, right? How does it stack up against other Browns pop culture appearances, like The Fortune Cookie? For the record, I have seen neither movie. I also didn’t see The Cleveland Show which I assume was overrated, just like Family Guy.

VG: Well, “The Fortune Cookie” at least won an Oscar for Walter Matthau. “Draft Day” was an enjoyable escape, but it won’t win any Oscars. My favorite moment in the movie comes at the beginning, when the Seahawks front office (it was supposed to be the Jets, but the team declined) was talking about dealing the top overall draft pick. They need to find someone who will overpay, someone who’s desperate. Those are almost the exact words. And then it cuts to an aerial shot of beautiful downtown Cleveland.

WFY: What’s keeping you spending your Sundays watching the Browns, in person, on TV, etc.?

VG: Morbid curiosity. The Browns keep coming up with creative ways to lose. I said there’s a part of me that wants to see a Trump presidency, and it’s the same part that keeps me watching the Browns. I know it’ll be a disaster, but I want to see how.

WFY: Lightning round: Greatest 21st century Brown? Best beer you can get in the stadium (FWIW, I think Great Lakes Oktoberfest is the best beer I’ve ever drank). Anything you want to say to the Ravens guest prognosticator I might have next week? Is Bernie Kosar in the team’s good graces again? Is 2 the least respectable number a QB can wear?

VG: Joe Thomas. Pretty much any Great Lakes selection. Art Modell fired Paul Brown, Marty Schottenheimer and Bill Belichick, AND went broke with NFL teams in Cleveland and Baltimore. He’s not a Hall of Famer. Bernie’s sort of in the team’s good graces, but they’ve really mended fences with Jim Brown. I think Johnny Manziel was going to tarnish whatever number he was given.

WFY: Let’s finish up with a more pleasant topic –baseball. How do you think the Tribe are going to do in the postseason? What about the Nats (I’m saying eliminated in 4, too many injuries)?

VG: I’m not feeling anywhere near as good as I was a couple weeks ago about the Tribe’s chances. The starting rotation — which was supposed to be the team’s biggest strength — is decimated. Ace Corey Kluber’s injured and out for the rest of the regular season. Carlos Carrasco broke his hand and is done for the year. Josh Tomlin went through a stretch where he looked like a batting practice pitcher. Best-case scenario for Danny Salazar is that he’s available out of the bullpen in the ALDS.

They’ve won the division, and I think they can win at least one playoff series, but probably not much more. Of course, I thought the Cavs were dead and buried after Game 4 of the NBA Finals, so I’m more than willing to be wrong…

12016 Ohio SPJ Awards winners

2Arsenio Hall everyone! We’re nothing, but not on the cutting edge of celebrity culture

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Carl from Aqua Teen Hunger Force, not to be confursed with guest prognosticator, Brad

2016 Redskins vs. New York Football Giants prediction with my friend Brad

My friend Brad Stratton (not pictured), a sportswriter turned educator, is back for some more guest prognosticating about his beloved New Yorker Football Giants who play the Washington Redskins this weekend in our native New Jersey.

WFY: Everything was lined up for the 2015 New York Football Giants. They were 5-5 coming out of the bye in a mediocre NFC East and in position to sneak into the playoffs, run the table and win the Super Bowl like they had 4 and 8 years earlier, respectively. Yet, they failed to do so, seemingly in defiance of the social contract. The New England Patriots must have been thrown off, because they couldn’t even beat the other Manning QB to advance to the Super Bowl. What went wrong?

BMS: The Giants’ defense was bad last year. They were 32nd in yards allowed, 32nd in passing yards allowed, and 30th in points allowed. Our pass rush was as nonexistent as you can get. In fact, our “savior” on defense returned in midseason with only eight and a half fingers. Yet if their games ended 75 seconds earlier last year, they would have been 11-5. The offense was Top 10, but the defense couldn’t hold a lead.

WFY: Big Blue is undefeated having beaten Dallas and New Orleans. How have they looked so far? Might Ben McAddo not be the next Ray Handley? How is Eli Manning doing with both Victor Cruz and Odell Beckham?

BMS: The front office poured a ton of money into the defense over the offseason, bringing in DE Olivier Vernon, DT Damon Harrison, and CB Janoris Jenkins from the Dolphins, Jets, and Rams, respectively. Pierce-Paul’s hand has healed enough to wear a special glove, so they gave him $10 million in a one-year deal. And those investments have, so far, paid off. There is a legitimate pass rush. The secondary is being left out to fend for themselves. The run defense has been outstanding. The Cowboys’ offensive line might be the best in football, but highly-touted rookie Ezekiel Elliott only averaged 2.55 yards a carry. Last week, the Saints only managed 41 yards rushing.

Definitely, one of the feel good stories so far has been the return of Victor Cruz. He hadn’t played since.Week 8 of the 2013 season, when he torn his patella tendon (imagine your knee cap going into your thigh). Last season, he struggled with a persistent calf injury that kept him sidelined all year, and on top of that, he’s about to turn 30. The odds were he might be done, and when he dealt with a groin issue during training camp, it looked that way. But he had the winning touchdown catch against Dallas, and made a huge sideline catch against New Orleans that set up the winning field goal.

And no, I would not compare McAdoo to He Who Must Not Be Named. McAdoo has been running the offense for two years, and running it well. You Know Who looked like an incompetent accountant.

WFY: How much are you looking forward to Beckham vs. Josh Norman?

BMS: Beckham is interesting. He’s played fairly well, but nothing like what we’re used to. One play before Cruz’s big catch against the Saints, he dropped an easy touchdown catch. He hasn’t found the end zone yet. His yards after the catch haven’t really been there. And then he’s got Josh Norman this weekend. I don’t think they will get as animated as last year, but Norman has proved able to get inside Beckham’s head, so we’ll see.

WFY: Now onto something important, uniforms. White pants and white shoes at home? Ugh. If they are going that direction, better go all the way and drop the gray striping and gray facemask too. On the other hand, the Color Rash uniforms are basically 1980s whites (sans blue socks) and GIANTS on the helmet and you seem pretty excited about it. Do you want want them to dump the gray completely? I love the current roadies.

BMS: I am beyond elated that the color rush jerseys are essentially the 1980s uniforms. For a while, the word out of the Giants was that we would never see the old GIANTS helmets again. Instead we got the ugly red jerseys, and I was frankly worried about what the color rush jerseys would look like. For the regular uniforms, I’m indifferent about white vs. gray pants. I like both.

WFY: Have you seen the Timeline episode, Jersey Guys? Being a Jersey Guy, did you enjoy it? Have you talked to older Jersey Guys, who were around when the move happened about it? I have seen bits and pieces of it (hasn’t made it to youtube in its entirety) and enjoyed what I saw.

BMS: I have only seen a little bit of Jersey Guys. We got rid of cable back in December, so I wasn’t able to see it the first time. I did manage to see some of Jersey Guys on the net on Monday night, but it was on late and I fell asleep in the middle. It was a dick move by Ed Koch to not let the Giants go down the Canyon of Heroes in ’87 (editor’s note: Brad did finally get to a ticker tape parade in 1999 for the Yankees. Sort of). I did enjoy A Football Life: Bill Parcells.

WFY: I’m skeptical the burgundy and gold can put it together and beat a good team having been dominated by Sam’s Steelers (at home) and losing to Dallas. I’m going with Giants 24-17, what about you? I also think the Giants should take the division and I’m not saying this to jinx you.

BMS: While the Giants are 2-0, we don’t quite know how good they are so far. They ran effectively against Dallas, but were pretty ineffective against New Orleans. They dominated the Saints, but won with a last second field goal because they were their own worst enemy (three fumbles, a missed field goal, a failed fourth and goal, and drive killing penalties). Marshall Newhouse graded out at the best offensive lineman in the league in Week 1, but looked lost at times in Week 2 (he is out for Sunday).

As for Washington, they are a desperate team. Even at 0-2, a win on Sunday and the Browns in Week 4 could put them at a manageable 2-2. But 0-3, with two losses in the division, that’s the stuff that murders your season early. Look for who is able to get off to the quick start on Sunday. If it’s the Redskins, all the doubt could creep away and they could have a good shot in this one. But if the Giants start strong, that could be the nudge Washington needs to go from desperate to careless.

I’ll agree with your score. 24-17 Giants, but 24-17 Redskins wouldn’t surprise me.

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DC vs. Pittsburgh (football & baseball) Q&A and prediction with The Maryland Bureau Chief Emeritus

Myron Cope, poet laureate of Pittsburgh sportsLet’s all welcome back Sam, The Maryland Bureau Chief Emeritus (not pictured), to guest prognostication. The first Washington Nationals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates series has passed and we’re now into gridiron Q&A. TMBCE emeritus, is of course a straight ticket black and gold fan. Just back from last night’s Bruce Springsteen concert he’s answering a few questions about tonight’s season opener between the Redskins and the Steelers and even a few Nats and Buccos.

WFY: Let’s talk about magazine covers – I saw your (yinz?) Stillers on the cover the other day. Are they a legitimate contender or did Sports Illustrated destroy that possibility? Where is the strength, offense, defense or special teams? Also, Northern Virginia magazine has Pittsburgh on the cover as a road trip. Not a bad place to visit, but with both the Steelers and Pirates on the DC September schedules, a slap in our faces down here.

TMBCE: Did you go to the Pirates/Nats series in July? (WFY: No) I remember that Sunday game was a classic. An 18 inning classic! In terms of the SI cover, I think that was a bad prediction by SI. The Steelers have potential, but the defense is still suspect and multiple players are on suspension/injury. The Steelers offense is by far the strength of the team. However, any significant injury to Big Ben ends the season.

WFY: Who, other that Ben Roethlisberger is left from those Super Bowl teams?

TMBCE: Three Steelers remain from the 2005 team: Ben Roethlisberger, James Harrison (LB) and Greg Warren (the designated punt/extra point snapper!). Those 3 were also on the 2008 Super Bowl winning team, in addition to Lawrence Timmons (LB) and William Gay (CB). As an aside, William Gay is still a starter for the Steelers (which is a BAD thing). Of course, several others played on the 2010 Super Bowl (that lost to Green Bay in the final game). I still can’t believe we lost that game. It still gives me chills. But to quote Tony Kornheiser “That’s it…That’s the list.”

WFY: What’s the Pittsburgh perception of the opener against Skins? I mean, they are facing the defending NFC East champion on the road on Monday night. They’ll be burgundy towels given out too!

TMBCE: I think its an interesting match-up. This should be a game the Redskins need to win: Steelers #2 WR Martvaius Bryant is out for the season, TE Heath Miller is retired, and RB Le’Veon Bell is suspended. Plus, the Steelers secondary is still awful. However, Big Ben is the best player in this match-up. I expect a high scoring game. Isn’t it weird that the Pittsburgh and Washington are in two different conferences? I wish they could play more often.

WFY: You know, a number of Super Bowl winners have lost to Washington over the years, so losing might not be so bad, right?

TMBCE: A loss to the Redskins would not kill the Steelers, but I think this could be a big push for the Redskins. The Cowboys don’t have Tony Romo. The Eagles seem to be in transition. It seems to be a two-horse race with Brad Stratton’s team for the NFC East title. Most media types are already ignoring the Skins, but I think they are better than expected.

WFY: I’m going to be frank — the overt display of Pittsburgh sports fandom is not as prevalent in BeltwayLand as it was 10 years ago. What’s going on? Are more natives returning to Western Pennsylvania like you did or is it the lack of Super Bowls of late?

TMBCE: Its hard to measure. Usually, Pittsburghers growing up here either stay forever or leave and don’t come back. Doesn’t seem to be a middle ground. For example, this year is supposed to be my 20 year high school reunion (and YES, that scares me by itself!) Too many of my class have left the area and aren’t able to make it back consistently. I can only speak for myself, I really do like Maryland (although I do not approve of Ravens fans). It’s a beautiful area and very active too. You know one thing that is much better than Pittsburgh? The DC Metro. (WFY: Should I tell him?) That was well maintained and more effective to travel around. The Pittsburgh “T” needs significant improvement.

WFY: Who made the better cameo in a disaster movie, Hines Ward in that Batman movie or the entire 1975 team in Black Sunday? In fact, what’s the best Pittsburgh sports cameo in a major motion picture?

TMBCE: Sadly, nothing special really stands out. Pittsburgh is better known for hosting/filming some excellent movies, such as Silence of the Lambs, Pretty Woman, and Dogma. Of course, there were a few bad movies filmed here as well. Lets just move on.

WFY: There is one correct answer:

NFL players and police, still getting along!

WFY: Since you were there, any commentary on the Penn State at Pitt game the other day?

TMBCE: I don’t understand the overall obsession that Pitt has with us. I don’t hate Pitt, but the Pitt fans seem to HATE us with an anger that I don’t understand. They also copy things from us. For example, the Pitt fans now chant: “We Are…..PT! We Are….PT” They also started singing the “Sweet Caroline” (WFY: a stupid tradition ripped off from the Red Sox for no good reason) after the 3rd quarter, although PSU has been doing that longer. Further, the Pitt fans BOOOOOED the Blue Band at halftime. I don’t remember any opposing team band getting booed at Happy Valley. They need to think for themselves! I would add that I had expected to see more Penn State fans at the game on Saturday.

WFY: How many Pittsburgh fans do you expect at the game? I’m guessing 10,000 to 15,000.

TMBCE: I’m going higher. 20,000 Steelers fans (of course, not all of them are from Pittsburgh).

WFY: Predictions! This game and the respective seasons of the opponents.

TMBCE: Washington 27-24. I predict the Redskins will start off with a big lead and the Steelers will come back. A late FG will win it for the Skins. Overall, I see both teams at 10-6 (WFY: 6-10 for Skins) and both finish in 2nd place in their divisions (and both make the playoffs).

WFY: Meanwhile on the other side of the Fort Duquesne Bridge, what’s going on with the Pirates? Their annual appearance in the play-in game seems in jeopardy. Has their window closed? Has anybody noticed since it’s football season?

TMBCE: It is not in jeopardy. Its done. Over. Collapse complete. I have predicted since spring training that meeting tried to put together a $et of player$ that could $upport the team win at an “affordable” price. I am extremely angry and upset about it. (Yes, I should be happy since our city has won a championship this year, but I’m not). The Pirates decided to trade productive players for “more affordable” options; all the while, the Pirates raised ticket prices. I am upset. The best thing the Pirates have done is the “Stand Up for Cancer” night, which a portion of the tickets go to cancer research (a important event that I was happy to support). Otherwise, the Pirates had a terrible off-season and made horrific trades. Are you happy with Mark Melancon? Last week I gave up on the Pirates. I don’t even know what their record is anymore, but I expect a losing season (which I predicted back in March). And yes, the fans are definitely unhappy.

WFY: Andrew McCutchen doesn’t seem to bat .550 against DC anymore. What’s going on with him? Was it cutting off his hair?

TMBCE:Cutch seems to want to obsess with the strikezone and what the umpire is calling. Its insanity. Some speculation around here includes that Cutch is trying to play his way out of Pittsburgh. At this point, I am fine with it. As long as they trade him for an ace
starting pitcher, I will be good with it. I’m sure that will never happen.

WFY: Gio for Cutch – let’s make it happen.

Oh look, bonus questions from TMBCE:

Bonus #1 Question and answer provided by Sam: What are your thoughts on the Penguins winning the Stanley Cup?

GREAT QUESTION! The highlight of the playoff run was beating the Washington Capitals in the 2nd round of the playoffs. (Sorry William, but its true). Overall, the Penguins continued their playoff dominance of the Capitals. I really didn’t think the Pens could beat the Caps in the playoffs, because the Capitals had such a dominating season. But once the Pens beat the Caps, I knew we would win the Stanley. Aren’t Capitals fans disappointed to have such a dominating regular season but lose to Pittsburgh in the playoffs?

Bonus #2: Question and answer provided by Sam: How was the Bruce Springsteen concert last night?

It was TREMENDOUS! It was my first concert to see BRRRRUUUCCE, and The Boss did not disappoint. It went 3 hours and 45 minutes! That was a bucket list item that I can cross off for me. It was very emotional, and I’m extactic that he played so many songs from The Rising album. It was such a great mix of old songs with newer albums and kept the momentum strong. THANK YOU BRUCE!

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"Port City Oktoberfest display at supermarket"

BeltwayLand beer & beyond: Too early and hot for Oktoberfest

The first regional Oktoberfest beers were released earlier in the month. It’s about 100 degrees out now and still the heart of gin and tonic season, so like everybody else I’m thinking TOO SOON. And I love Oktoberfest beers, marzen is my favorite style.

My most extensive review of regional Oktoberfests was from 2014 selections, so check that out. I may have to stockpile some and save them for the right weather since they disappear so quickly.

Virginia’s excellent tourism web site has a list of several Oktoberfests celebrations, evergreen Craft Beer information and blog posts.

September 23 update

Hey, it’s beer week, so check out what’s going on:

I’ll keep theleave the (last season’s harvest) pumpkin beer coverage to of others (Mental Floss) because good stuff is still coming in:

But what, there’s more. There’s Gemütlichkeit!

Yes, that IS my new favorite word!

Enjoy local beer while watching others exercise

District Drafts local/regional beer stand
While we await Oktoberfest and dream of a different kind involving the NL East leading Washington Nationals, check out the Nationals Park beer map, a service from The Nationals Review.

As for football season, Baltimore-fan boy Scott Allen noted that Jack Kent Cooke Stadium FedEx Field will serve craft including John Riggins 4&1, a pilsner brewed by EscutcheonBrew in Wincester. First, the stadium details, from Chicken and waffles, Redskins ‘Hog Dog’ and more craft beer coming to FedEx Field (DC Sports Bog, The Post):

After adding a craft beer cart on the main concourse last year, Bloyer said the Redskins are making a “much bigger push” with craft beer this season. The tasting was held in a rebranded space on the club level called the Craft Haus, which will feature 8-10 rotating taps throughout the season. Elysian’s Space Dust IPA, Devils Backbone’s Vienna Lager, Flying Dog’s The Truth Imperial IPA, Bell’s Two Hearted Ale and Escutcheon Brewing Co.’s 4th and 1 Pilsner (John Riggins’s beer) were among the beers available Wednesday.

Riggo’s beer got an extensive profile from the Bog as well: Loosen up with Redskins legend John Riggins’s new beer.

Riggo of course, has a history with the golden beverage and tried to start a beer television show.

We’ll check in with the Verizon Center beer situation next time.

Bicycling and beer – what could go wrong!

Father's Day beers at Port City

Moving on from drinking beer while others exercise, let’s talk about combining the two (safely!).That GitHub W&OD beer map is updated with some of the new breweries. Washingtonian has a map for the whole DC region as well on: 24 DC-Area Breweries You Can Bike To

I stopped at Vienna’s Caboose Brewing Co. a while back for a taste.
Caboose Brewing, Vienna, Va.

I tried the Crossroads Lager. Tasty, but the flavor is milder than I would have expected given the color. The pub, transformed a boring old warehouse at the end of Mill Street into an appealing space and patio. It’s right off the W&0D.

Port City, while not on the W&OD, isn’t far from the Holmes Run and Eisenhower Avenue trails either. It’s quicker for me to bike there than drive and me and another friend celebrated Father’s Day for a little bit as shown above. They have a Pedals ‘n Pints ride on Saturday, August 20 at 10:45 a.m.. I might go.

Devils Backbone has a 75-miles long ride between their facilities (WSLS), but more about them later.

I will probably check out New District Brewing, right by the eastern terminus of the W&OD. They’ve got a sign now too.

Remember, be responsible.

Beer issues

Washingtonian and Northern Virginia magazines published their beer issues recently. The region has come a long way since 2011.

Beer NowNorthern Virginia Magazine
“a directory with more than 50 breweries, half of which are expected to open within the next year.”

Emphasis added

Washingtonian is gradually adding beer stories to their web site (easiest way to see the newest search for “beer“), but go ahead and get started with these too:

How Loudoun County Became a Beer-Head’s Mecca

Best Job Ever: The Smithsonian Is Hiring a Craft Beer Historian

Of course, we can’t forget our friends at The Post

A deal with the Devil?

Devil's Backbone display

April brought news that Devil’s Backbone, the Virginia brewer that had the foresight to make a really good, accessible lager was getting in bed with AmBev.

Sell out? Sure, but that’s kind of goal of a lot of enterprises — getting rewarded for what you built.

If you are big craft community believer, the sale is worrisome because AmBev can undercut other craft brewers. $9.99 a sixpack is a lot more inviting than $11.99 or higher. That’s already happening where I shop. If you just like Devil’s Backbone (especially Vienna Lager) good news – it’s cheaper!

The inevitable shake-out of the beer boom is coming one way or another and it’s kind of surprising big beer is just making it’s move. A whole generation is entering the marketplace as local/regional craft beer drinkers, so what else will the big multinationals do?

Devi’s Backbone is in limbo right now as the transaction isn’t completed. They aren’t independent anymore and got kicked out of competing in a beer festival they are hosting.

Amid deal with Anheuser-Busch, craft brewery gets kicked out of its own festivalThe Post

Festival results are starting to come in, I’ll link to them soon.

And then there is this:

BeltwayLand Brewing twitter list

The ever-growing Twitter list of breweries from D.C., Northern Virginia and a little bit of Maryland.

That’s all for now, prost!

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