Last week in a radio interview with Seattle's KJR, former NFL coach and front-office executive Mike Holmgren became the latest person to weigh in on the Redskins name controversy. During that conversation, Holmgren also recounted his own personal history with Redskins owner Dan Snyder dating back to early in Snyder's tenure in Washington.
Late in 2000, shortly after the Cowboys traded two first-round picks to the Seahawks for wide receiver Joey Galloway, Snyder phoned Holmgren, then the coach and general manager in Seattle, to let him know exactly how he felt about the move.
Details via Richard Justice, who wrote for the Houston Chronicle at the time (by way of the Washington Post):
"Snyder hasn't limited his temper to those on his payroll, either," Justice wrote. "He telephoned Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on draft day to say he didn't think much of his chief rival's selections.
"And when Snyder believed Seattle coach Mike Holmgren had double-crossed him by trading receiver Joey Galloway to the Cowboys instead of the Redskins, he telephoned Holmgren to scream his displeasure."
So when Holmgren was asked in last week's radio interview if he knew Snyder, he said he did and then offered up this account (again, via the Post):
“Joey Galloway, I gave him the exclusive tag, and so we were trying to make a trade,” Holmgren said. “So I talked to the Redskins, and I talked to Dallas, and I told both teams, I said ‘Listen, I'm not gonna monkey around with this.' I said ‘You give me your best offer, I'll listen to you, and I'll listen to you and then I'll make the deal. Whoever gives me the best thing.'
“And so Jerry Jones said I'll give you two ones. And Washington -- Vinny Cerrato at the time -- said I'll give you this. And so I went with Jerry. And so I got a call. The first time I talked to Dan. And he goes ‘That's not how you negotiate!' I said, ‘Well, you know, that's how I decided to do it. And I'm sorry.
“And then he just goes off. He goes ‘I know you and Jerry Jones are friends, you sit on the Competition Committee, blah blah blah.' He goes off. And so I said ‘Hey, relax, would you' I said ‘You don't know me. You don't know what I'm thinking.' He goes ‘Hey, I'm a new owner, I plan to be in this a long time, and WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND! I said, ‘Bring it.' I said ‘Bring it.'"
We love the visual of Snyder yelling into his phone while Holmgren, who admits that "I said some other stuff that I'm not too proud of," seems wholly unconcerned.
Though, to Snyder's (alleged) point: What goes around did, in fact, come around. Fun fact, via CBSSports.com editor Tony Moss: The Redskins beat Holmgren's Seahawks four straight times after the Galloway trade, followed by playoff wins for Seattle over Washington in 2005 and 2007.
Holmgren also had a forgettable stint as the Browns president, and was the man responsible for using Cleveland's two 2012 first-round picks on Trent Richardson and Brandon Weeden, neither of whom are still with the team.
Eventually, however, Holmgren says he and Snyder patched things up.
“We had this big thing for a while," Holmgren conceded. "And then when his wife contracted cancer, and he knew Kathy had breast cancer, we flipped, and we became I don't want to say buddies, but it was really a change in the relationship. But those first couple of years, no, he was mad.”