Tom Sherwood's Notebook: 8/12/09

Snyder's money woes won't lead to new stadium

The Redskins will play the Ravens Thursday night in the preseason opener.

Go 'Skins! But that's not the big story (for most people).

Convicted and disgraced quarterback Michael Vick could be back soon with an NFL team after his two-year legal hiatus.

We're still not sure whether we think Vick should be allowed back.

Former NFL coach and now NBC talking head Tony Dungy has been mentoring the player. Dungy said during the Hall of Fame game Sunday that Vick is on the verge of signing with a new team and is genuinely remorseful over his dog-fighting conviction.

We want to believe that latter part -- the remorseful part. We believe in forgiveness and contrition. But we also believe Vick should be kept on a short leash for any sign of brutal or illegal behavior, which should be a fatal blow to his career. We know Vick paid his legal penalty, but that's just how we feel.

• Those 'Skins

We asked a veteran sports cameraman -- who has been right with his preseason analyses for several seasons now -- about the prospects for a good season. But he says not to get our hopes up.

"Who's the owner, still Dan Snyder?" he asked rhetorically. "Nothing will change until the ownership does."

Well, we hope he's wrong. It's been a rough go for Snyder. He's got one of the wealthiest franchises in NFL history, with a terrific fan base to boot. But Snyder has not fielded the winning teams he and the fans dream of every season.

Our hope is that the Redskins do well and that the economy turns around for Snyder businesses and everyone else. That's because the faltering economy has pretty much silenced hopes that Snyder might build a better stadium in Washington on the site of the old RFK.

The District, even if it had any supporting money, would have to be careful to strike the right deal. But the Redskins are out of place at woeful FedEx Field. It's time to come home.

• More Football?

Tickets already are on sale for the 2009 EagleBank Bowl. That's the new December game that debuted last year (Navy defeated Wake Forest). This year, Army will play an Atlantic Coast Conference team to be named later. If Army doesn't play well enough to be bowl-eligible, a different team will be picked.

The bowl promoters say the game will be played at "historic RFK Stadium." That sounds a lot better than "old RFK." Check out details about the game at

• First Things First

While we're on sports, we were very excited about the late-season winning streak of the Washington Nationals. Eight straight after Sunday's victory was making us feel pretty good.

 • Back To Politics

What is former Sen. George Allen, R-Va., up to these days? We get more e-mail alerts about his media schedule than from any politician who's actually in office.

Is Allen looking to run for something again, or just to rebuild his standing in the Republican Party? And will he ever live down the infamous "macaca" remark that did him in? Many believe that without the slip Allen could have won that campaign against Democratic challenger Jim Webb. Even with the embarrassment, it was a close race. Will there be a rematch in 2012?

• More On Parking Tickets

We're not too keen on the new central parking meters that are replacing old-fashioned single meters.

The nice green boxes aren't too difficult to operate once you try them, but I pity the poor out-of-towner who's here maybe once and can't figure out the credit card payment or, worse, finds it doesn't work.

And if you plan to use cash, you have to have eight quarters for every hour of parking time. (That's seven and a half minutes for each quarter.) So a two-hour meter is 16 quarters. And if you use anything less than a quarter -- dimes and nickels -- you have to have even more coins.

Somebody come up with a better idea. Please.

• "Feet In The Street"

Now this sounds fun, and you don't need any quarters for parking meters.

On Aug. 29, the city will hold its first-ever "Feet in the Street," a car-free celebration. It will be held at Fort Dupont Park in Southeast Washington. (Please note, this is not Dupont Circle.)

The day's festivities in the 376-acre park include "physical activity, green transportation choices and community spirit."

The park will be closed to vehicles from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., and you're welcome to run, walk, bike, skate and play. Do not drive, except to get there.

City officials say "Feet in the Street" is modeled after ceremonies in New York City and other places.

The D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation is sponsoring the event, along with the Washington Area Bicyclist Association, the Anacostia Watershed Society and several other groups. More information? Visit

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