Artificial turf at FedEx Field... December 30 2013
...is ‘something you would definitely look at,’ Mike Shanahan says
Coach Mike Shanahan said Monday he would be receptive to the possibility of the Washington Redskins installing an artificial turf playing surface at FedEx Field.
“With some of the new turf they have, you’d always entertain the possibility,” Shanahan said at Redskins Park. “Two or three years in a row, you see how bad that field is, it’s something you would definitely look at.”
Shanahan has acknowledged it is unclear if he will remain the team’s coach beyond Sunday’s season finale against the New York Giants at the Meadowlands, saying that will be a decision made by owner Daniel Snyder after the two meet following the season. Shanahan also said Monday the decision about the playing surface at FedEx Field is Snyder’s to make, no matter who coaches the team.
Pierre Garcon, upended here by Orlando Scandrick,
said FedEx Field’s conditions have “been bad all year.”
(John McDonnell/The Washington Post)
But Shanahan said he always has preferred natural grass playing fields. So his concession that an artificial playing surface should be considered by the Redskins marks a shift in his stance on the subject.
The condition of the field has been raised as an issue previously, particularly after the Redskins lost a first-round NFC playoff game to the Seattle Seahawks last season at FedEx Field. The Redskins lost this season’s home finale Sunday to the Dallas Cowboys, 24-23. The game was played in rainy conditions and several players said afterward the condition of the field was an issue.
Shanahan said Monday he thought the field, which was re-sodded last month, was in better shape Sunday than it had been in previous weeks.
“Both teams were playing the same conditions,” Shanahan said. “I thought it was better than the previous two games even though it was quite wet.”
Redskins wide receiver Pierre Garcon was asked Sunday about the condition of the field and said: “It’s been bad all year.”
Cornerback Josh Wilson, who slipped on a key Cowboys’ completion late in the game, said: “You could look at it and tell. It’s raining. It’s the end of the season. It’s gonna be tough to keep the grass good. So it’s definitely slick. You know, you’ve got to keep your feet under you.”