Gibbs Has Perspective

We all know how important the Redskins are to Joe Gibbs, but his devotion to the team pales in comparison to the importance of family to him.

Very often after an interview session breaks up and just a few reporters linger around, Joe Gibbs will talk about a favorite subject: his grandkids. Or, as he says, the grandbabies. It's a term he uses often, like super smart. But it's a topic that clearly matters to him.

He'll talk about his namesake, the one who draws up plays, hates Dallas and lives and dies for the Redskins. And he'll talk about pictures they've given him or cards they've made.

Or we'll see him stay on the field afterward as he plays with one of the grandbabies for a few minutes; maybe longer.

So it was with great sadness that we heard about his 2-year-old grandson Taylor, who is already undergoing treatment for leukemia. We first heard him talk about it on his website last night and it certainly made me pause, knowing as I do how much they matter to him.

Whatever has been said about Gibbs lately, the one thing you can always say is this: the guy is very human. He does not come across as detached or one-dimensional, like a Bill Belichick. Gibbs is ultra-competitive and has a fiery side, but he also admits to very human failings. And he'll talk about a lot of the same stuff we do. In my three years covering him, myself and other reporters have talked to him about his favorite movie (Young Frankenstein), a favorite comic strip (the Wizard of Id) as well as commercials he likes and doesn't like. Normal stuff.

And the grandkids. He's always talking about them. We would wish anyone's grandson who had this disease well. But with Gibbs there's an extra wish. Hopefully, the chemotherapy kills the cancer and Taylor goes on to a long, healthy life.

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