Inside the organization and among fans, there’s a lot of excitement over the Washington Redskins drafting quarterback Dwayne Haskins this year.
But that might be one of the few positive things happening around the team’s Ashburn, Virginia, facility these days.
‘Almost 40 employees have left’
On Wednesday morning, reporter Chris Russell of 106.7 The Fan said on the air that dozens of business side employees have left the organization in recent months.
“Almost 40 employees behind the scenes have left since January, since they fired [Brian] Lafemina and his crew,” Russell said. “I’ve been told this by multiple, multiple people. Almost 40 people have left.
“We’re not talking about football players or coaches or anything like that. ... Nobody wants to work there. It's a terrible culture.”
For a once-widely beloved team that struggled to put butts in the seats last season, it likely won’t make things easier.
Washington hired Lafemina in May 2018 as president of business operations and chief operating officer, after he’d spent the previous eight years as a senior vice president with the NFL, working with teams on business development.
Lafemina, along with Steve Ziff, hired as chief marketing officer, and Jake Bye, VP of consumer sales, were supposed to improve the fan experience for Washington’s faithful.
But all three were let go just seven months later. Now, according to Russell, many others have gone too.
Other executives were hired after Lafemina was fired, and team president Bruce Allen, who already has a huge say in football operation, reportedly took a bigger role on the business side as well.
Is Allen part of the problem?
Russell is a frequent critic of Allen, and asserted that Allen is part of the problem.
“Everybody thinks on my end that I just have it out for Bruce Allen,” Russell said. “If I'm being honest, I don't think he's a good leader. I don't think he's a good person, I don't think he treats people well.
“Nobody wants to work there. Nobody believes in the direction and the leadership of that franchise.”
Further, Russell said he’s been told there’s some friction between Allen and the coaching staff as well.
“From everything that I hear, there is this split between the coaching staff and Bruce, where the coaching staff kind of thinks it's all a joke and they're wondering, ‘What the hell are you guys doing?’,” Russell said.
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