Embarrassing record spurs Redskins hope to improve takeaways
Is "Redskins" the object of "spurs"? It can't be because the verb "hope" right after a noun puts "Redskins" two incompatible roles.
Unless "hope" isn't a verb. So if "hope" is a noun we reanalyze "Redskins" as a modifying possessive because it is their hope. But then where's the apostrophe? So it's not possessive. It's just a hope that is characterized as pertaining to the team. Maybe a neutralized form that with other nouns could take an -an or -ian ending. American hope. Canadian hope. Newtonian hope.
The -an/-ian ending isn't necessary with the names of sports teams. Yankee fever. Celtic pride. Red Wing championship.
But we commonly see the plural form made singular in such cases. Is there something wrong with "Redskin hope"?
And why is "hope" necessary? Maybe Embarrassing record spurs Redskins to improve takeaways implies that they succeeded. And at this point we have no reason to think they will succeed. They only hope to.
Obviously keeping the headline short was not the primary constraint. They violated that one right off the bat. I would have though fatally but...no. It almost looks like they wanted a long headline. So how about
Embarrassed by record Redskins look to improve takeaways
Embarrassed Redskins hope to improve takeaways next season
Tuesday, July 31, 2007