Sports News Without Access, Favor, Or Discretion
Photo credit: Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Nothing in this fawning Washington Post profile of Bruce Allen, team president of D.C.’s NFL franchise, would seem so much as a hair out of place in a glossy gameday program handed out by team employees inside the home stadium. To the extent it contains a thesis more complex than Bruce Allen is good, its thesis is Many people do not know Bruce Allen is good, but actually he is good. Still, you’re nearly all the way through the thing before it lapses from familiarly gross gotta-make-the-donuts access maintenance—the Post’s specialty in all its major beats, Batman-ass slogans notwithstanding—into straight-up fan fiction.

What the fuck is this shit?

In this role, Allen is playing to an audience of one. And if he delivers the next Redskins stadium—a billion-dollar building project that would define [Dan] Snyder’s legacy as an NFL owner and serve as an economic engine to the Washington region—Allen will take a bow to all the applause a man needs.


Assuming the problem isn’t a basic misunderstanding of what an engine does—that would be the generous reading—then the Post is now doing hype-man work for the stadium financing scam in the pages of its sports section.

No receipts are offered to support this extraordinary claim about a future stadium construction project that does not even have a municipality picked out yet, to say nothing of a financing plan that, if it follows the pattern of years’ worth of stadium projects inside the NFL and out, almost certainly will put that eventual municipality on the hook for billions of dollars of debt. It’s not even a quote from a PR flack! It’s the kicker of the article, the paper’s own words: The Skins’ new stadium, wherever it ends up, however it gets paid for, and which will not open before 2027 in any case, definitely will be good for the regional economy. The end.


Oh, well, I’m glad that’s settled. I’m sure this water-toting will pay off great for the Post and reporter Liz Clarke when the Skins are looking for a friendly outlet to launder an embarrassing organizational meltdown 18 months from now. Will it be worth the cost of a new football stadium? Only time will tell! But while we wait, maybe the Post can bring in that non-economist who writes bullshit studies on the economic benefits of sports stadiums that are so over the top the teams commissioning them have to tell him to tone it down to write a few columns on the matter. You know, for consistency.


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