My All Time Favorite Washington Redskins Players
The Washington Redskins have always been knows as a smash mouth football team. Formed in 1933, the Redskins are have had some of the greatest players in football history wear its uniform. The team has won five championship, with two before the AFL-NFL merger and three Super Bowl titles in the 1980s and 1990s. Despite a dry period that ran from 1946-1970, the Redskins have been one of the most successful teams in the NFL. They have featured a number of Hall of Fame players and some of the best players ever, especially on offense.
Like many NFL teams, when the Redskins have a great quarterback, they are more likely to achieve success. Beginning with “Slingin'” Sammy Baugh to Sonny Jurgensen to Joe Theismann to Robert Griffin III to Kirk Cousins today, the Redskins have had some of the best quarterbacks in the NFL on its team. Another position of strength for the Redskins has been its offensive line. Nicknamed “The Hogs,” the Redskins teams of the 1980s had one of the best offensive lines in the league, and easily one of the most memorable nicknames ever. Along with a superstar receiving cores with Art Monk, Gary Clark and Ricky Sanders, the Redskins won three Super Bowl titles in nine seasons from 1982-1991. Those teams are some of the best in team history.
Position: Quarterback – Tail Back #33
Height: 6’2″ Weight: 182
Born: March 17, 1914 in Temple Texas
Drafted: Washington Redskins picked in the 1st Round (6th Overall) in the 1937 NFL Draft
Career: 1937 – 1952 – Washington Redskins
Highlights: 6 time Pro Bowler, 4 time First-Team All-Pro and inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in the charter class of 1963. By the time he retired, Baugh set 13 NFL records in three player positions: quarterback, punter, and defensive back. He is considered one of the all-time great football players. He was the first to play the position of quarterback as it is played today, the first to make the forward pass an effective weapon rather than an “act of desperation”. Slingin’ Sammy Baugh was a true pioneer of the forward pass and held most of the Redskins passing records for many years. He still holds the Redskins record for touchdowns with 187. He was the last surviving member of the inaugural class inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1963, including Bronko Nagurski, Red Grange, Jim Thorpe, Curly Lambeau, Don Hutson, George Halas, Ernie Nevers, and Mel Hein. Two of his records as quarterback still stand: most seasons leading the league in passing (six; tied with Steve Young) and most seasons leading the league with the lowest interception percentage (five). He is also third in highest single-season completion percentage (70.33%), most seasons leading the league in yards gained (four) and most seasons leading the league in completion percentage (seven). As a punter, Baugh retired with the NFL record for highest punting average in a career (45.1 yards), and is still second all-time (Shane Lechler 46.5 yards), and has the best (51.4 in 1940) and fourth best (48.7 in 1941) season marks. As a defensive back, he was the first player in league history to intercept four passes in a game, and is the only player to lead the league in passing, punting, and interceptions in the same season. Baugh also led the league in punting from 1940 through 1943. As a quarterback, Sammy Baugh completed 1,693 passes for 21,866 yards and 187 throwing touchdowns.
Position: Quarterback #9
Height: 5’11” Weight: 202
Born: August 23, 1934 in Wilmington North Carolina
Drafted: Philadelphia eagles picked in the 4th Round (85th Overall) in the 1957 NFL Draft
Career: 1957 – 1974 – Washington Redskins
Highlights: 5 time Pro Bowler, 2 time First-Team All-Pro and inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1983. His early career was spent with the Philadelphia Eagles and it was during this time as a backup that he won his only championship when the Eagles won the 1960 NFL Championship. After Norm Van Brocklin retired, Jurgensen took over as the Eagles starter and passed for an NFL record 3,723 yards tying the NFL record with 32 touchdown passes. Often recognized as the finest pure passer of his time, he earned 3 NFL passing titles and exceeded 400 yards passing in a single game 5 times and threw 5 touchdown passes in a game twice. With a career rating of 82.6 his stats include 2,433 completions for 32,224 yards and 225 touchdowns and he also rushed for 493 yards and 15 touchdowns in his 18 year career.
Position: Quarterback #7
Height: 6’0″ Weight: 192
Born: September 9, 1949 in New Brunswick New Jersey
College: Notre Dame
Drafted: Miami Dolphins picked in the 4th Round (99th Overall) in the 1971 NFL Draft
Career: 1974 – 1985 – Washington Redskins
Highlights: 2 time Pro Bowler, 1 time First-Team All-Pro and won 1 Super Bowl with the Washington Redskins. He was into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2003. Originally drafted by the Miami Dolphins, a contract negotiation failed and he signed with the Canadian Football League and played for the Toronto Argonauts for four years before signing with the Washington Redskins. In his 12 seasons with the Washington Redskins he completed 2,044 passes for 25,206 yards and 160 touchdowns and rushed for 1,815 yards and another 17 touchdowns. His career was ended prematurely by a freak mishap when he suffered a compound fracture of his lower leg from a tackle by Lawrence Taylor on a failed flee flicker play on Monday Night Football. When it comes down to a list of the Redskins all-time great quarterbacks, Joe Theismann is right at the top the list. He by far leads the group in attempts, completions and yards. He is third in touchdowns behind Sammy Baugh and Sonny Jurgenson and had a career completion percentage of 56.7.
Position: Quarterback #12
Height: 6’4″ Weight: 220
Born: August 9, 1955 in Zachary Louisiana
College: Grambling State
Drafted: Tampa Bay Buccaneers picked in the 1st Round (17th Overall) in the 1978 NFL Draft
Career: 1978 – 1989 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1978-1982, Washington Redskins 1986-1989
Highlights: Doug Williams was the first African-American quarterback to start and win a Super Bowl and Super Bowl Most Valuable Player as the Washington Redskins defeated the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXII.
Robert Griffin III
Position: Quarterback #10
Height: 6’2″ Weight: 223
Born: February 12, 1990
Drafted: Washington Redskins picked in the 1st Round (2nd Overall) in the 20121937 NFL Draft
Career: 2012 – Present – Washington Redskins
Highlights: Robert Griffin III made an immediate impact in the NFL and will prove to be a force.
RB – Cliff Battles (1932-1937)
Larry Brown was a four-time Pro Bowl running back and 1972 NFL Most Valuable Player. Then coach Vince Lombardi noticed that Brown was talented but seemed a half step behind the snap count. Lombardi ordered hearing tests done and found that Brown’s hearing was partially impaired in one ear. Lombardi ordered a device rigged in Brown’s helmet so he could hear the snap count better and the rest was history. Because of his contributions to his career, Brown lists Coach Lombardi as his greatest inspiration.
A powerful running back that could run away from you but really liked to run over you, Riggins played with passion and heart every time he stepped onto the field. Washington’s number one running back of all time, with that offensive line he was the perfect back for Washington’s system. Whether you call him “The Diesel” or “Riggo” John Riggins will go down as a Redskins legend. A member of the 10,000-yard club, Riggins physical running style was best shown during his 43-yard touchdown run during Super Bowl XVII. He was named the game’s most valuable player. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992.
Stephen Davis was drafted in the fourth round out of Auburn in 1996. He shared time in the backfield with another great Redskins running back Terry Allen. He also spent quite a bit of time as the team’s fullback. He led the NFL in rushing touchdowns in 1999, his first of two Pro Bowl years with the Redskins, with 17.
Clinton Portis is a Redskins legend and currently ranks second in many rushing categories behind only John Riggins on the Redskins all-time list. Portis is also quickly closing in on the 10,000 yard club. If he is able to make it, he will be the first Redskin since Riggins to join that elite club.
With the grace of a gazelle and the speed of cheetah, Art Monk revolutionized the Wide Receiver position in Washington. Monk was the greatest receiver of all time in Washington, he did everything and he did it with excellence. A perfect mentor to the younger receivers, he was the consummate professional on and off the field, a true Hall of Famer. Art Monk broke about every receiving record there was to be broken in a time when the NFL was not as “pass happy” as it is today. Monk still holds Redskin records for receptions and yards. He once held the NFL record for receptions before Jerry Rice broke his record. Monk was the No. 1 receiver on the “Posse” group of Washington receivers that featured Ricky Sanders and Gary Clark as well.
As a rookie, Charley Taylor had 53 catches for 814 yards and 755 yards rushing. In 1966, Taylor switched positions to wide receiver where he stayed till his retirement. He still ranks second on the Redskins all-time list for receptions with 649.
Bobby Mitchell was a four-time Pro Bowl selection—three times with Washington. Mitchell came to Washington when the Redskins had traded the rights to Ernie Davis to the Cleveland Browns. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1983.
Gary Clark is a homegrown favorite. He played his college football for local James Madison University where his number was retired. Clark was part of the “Posse” along with Art Monk and Ricky Sanders. Known for his physical play and slot catching ability, he was a four-time Pro Bowl selection and two-time Super Bowl winner.
Ricky Sanders was part three of “the Posse” that included himself, Art Monk and Gary Clark. Most teams had extreme problems covering the three wide receivers because they all complimented each other’s talents equally and knew their job. Monk was the one with the reliable hands. Gary Clark was the big and physical wide receiver. Sanders was the speedy, deep threat. What a trifecta. Sanders caught 414 passes for 5854 yards and 36 touchdowns during his tenure with the Redskins.
Santana Moss has been one of the Redskins top wide receivers for quite some time now and only has more time to add to his stats. As of this article, he has 391 catches wearing a Redskins uniform. That puts him only 24 away from topping Redskin great Ricky Sanders for receptions.
Jerry Smith was a great receiving tight end that played his entire career with the Washington Redskins. He holds the team record for touchdown catches by a tight end with 60.
Arguably becoming the greatest tight end the Redskins have ever had. Cooley is the only tight end in NFL history to catch six or more touchdowns in his first four seasons.
The anchor of that massive offensive line, they opened holes for any and every running back ever to play at Washington. The “Hogs” truly dominated defenses on a regular basis, but the staple of this O-Line was consistency and stability. Russ Grimm went to four straight Pro Bowls as a member of the “Hogs” during the 1980’s. For his efforts, he was named to the NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team.
Len Hauss was a staple center in the middle of the Redskins offensive line for a very long time. For his steady play, he was selected to six straight Pro Bowls and got to play in the Redskins first Super Bowl. A durable player, he started 192 consecutive games at center.
An undrafted prospect out of Clemson, Bostic went on to become a member of the “Hogs” offensive line and a three-time Super Bowl Champion.
Jacoby a massive offensive lineman, that was a member of the “Hogs” he quite possibly could be Washington’s best offensive lineman ever to play. Jacoby played for a long time and was the prototype offensive blocker. Joe Jacoby was an undrafted free agent that barely made the team at first. Then he became a member of the “Hogs” and was John Riggins lead blocker for his famous Super Bowl XVII run. A three time Super Bowl winner and four straight Pro Bowl offensive lineman, Jacoby was named to the NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team.
After being drafted third overall in 2000, Samuels immediately became the starting left tackle and a star was born. He started every game he ever played in and was rewarded for his play by earning six Pro Bowl trips.
Manley was a monster of a man, offenses feared him with his power and his speed he could make any game a nightmare for coaches. There is no denying that he quite possibly could be Washington’s best defensive lineman. Dexter Manley is the Redskins’ career sack leader with 97.5. He was named to the Pro Bowl in 1986 when he registered 18.5 sacks. He unofficially has 103.5 sacks, but the six he recorded his rookie season were not an officially kept statistic at the time.
“Big” Dave Butz was no understatement. Standing 6’8″ tall and weighing around 320lbs, he was one of the largest men to play during his time period. He was also one the most durable. During his 16-season career with the Cardinals and Redskins, he only missed four games. He was a one-time Pro Bowl player in 1983 and was selected to the 1980s All Decade Team.
DT – Diron Talbert (1971-1980)
Charles Mann is a three-time Super Bowl winner and four-time Pro Bowler. He recorded 83 sacks in his career. He played the other end of a defensive line that featured Dave Butz and Dexter Manley.
Hanburger played his entire career for the Washington Redskins and had the nickname “The Hangman.” He got this nickname based on his ability to “clothes-line” tackle an opponent. His nine Pro Bowl trips is the most in Redskins history and his 14 years with the team is the third longest tenure. On August 25, 2010 Hanburger was nominated as a senior candidate for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2011.
Huff was a dynamic linebacker who was traded to the Redskins from the New York Giants, and he made an immediate impact. He made the Pro Bowl his first season in Washington and was part of a Washington defense that was ranked second in the NFL in 1965.
Ken Harvey came to the Redskins after beginning his career with the Cardinals, and both were glad he did. Harvey went to four straight Pro Bowls after coming to Washington and finished his career being known as one of the best blitzing linebackers of his time.
Monte Coleman played 217 games for the Redskins in three decades, ranking second to Darrell Green. His 56.5 sacks ranks fourth on the team’s list all time. Coleman played in four Super Bowls, winning three—all with the Redskins.
LaVar Arrington was drafted second overall in the 2000 draft out of Penn State. He began to draw comparisons to Giants great Lawrence Taylor when he began wearing Taylor’s No. 56 and resembled him with very physical play. Known as a kind of “freelance” player, Arrington blitzed constantly and was a punishing run defender.
London Fletcher recorded the most tackles from 2000-2009 with 1244 but always seemed to have the Pro Bowl escape him, being named an alternate nine times but never making the Pro Bowl. Then as captain of Washington’s defense, he earned his first Pro Bowl trip in 2010. A very durable player, Fletcher has played in every game since his rookie season. He has only not started one game since his sophomore season.
The NFL’s fastest man at one time was a ball hawk on the field. Darrell Green was one of the best cornerbacks in the league, on and off the field. Many games each quarterback, before every play needed to know where #28 was on the field at all times. Darrell Green is one of only two players ever to play for the same team for 20+ seasons. He won the NFL’s Fastest Man Competition four times and was the only undefeated four time winner. He holds numerous Redskins records for games played, games started, games played at the same position and most games played by a defensive player. He also holds numerous NFL records for most consecutive seasons with an interception, multiple oldest player interception records and the oldest person to play cornerback.
Ronald “Champ” Bailey was Washington’s first-round draft pick for the 1999 draft. Coming out of Georgia, Bailey began his new career learning from two of the best defensive backs to ever play the game—Darrell Green and Deion Sanders. Bailey went to the Pro Bowl every season he was in Washington except his rookie year. As his contract was about to expire, he was allowed to seek out a trade, and he was the instrumental piece that brought Clinton Portis to Washington from the Denver Broncos.
Pat Fischer ranks seventh all time in Redskins career interceptions with 27 and fourth all time with 412 career interception return yards. His motto “get a leg up and you own him” is used today to motivate smaller defensive backs.
Brig Owens is the current Redskins record holder for interception return yards. His interception and fumble return during the Redskins 72-41 win over the New York Giants in 1966 helped contribute to the highest scoring NFL game in history.
Paul Krause became the NFL interception king. He currently holds the record for interceptions with 81. Krause caught his first 28 with the Washington Redskins who drafted him in the second round out of the University of Iowa.
Ken Houston was a first ballot Hall of Fame inductee in 1986. Including some of his time playing for the Houston Oilers, he was selected to 12 straight Pro Bowls. He was named to the NFL 1970’s All-Decade Team and NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team.
Sean Taylor was well on his way to becoming the mainstay in that Washington defense, but sadly his life was taken from him at a young age. Taylor was a powerful safety with size and strength, really unmatched by any other safety in the league.
K – Mark Moseley
Mark Moseley is the only placekicker to ever win the Most Valuable Player award. He was also a three-time Pro Bowler and is the Redskins all-time leading scorer—1207 points.
P – Sammy Baugh
PR – Brian Mitchell
Electrifying, Breath Taking, Explosive all words to describe Brian Mitchell as he returned kicks for the Redskins throughout his years in DC. Mitchell was able to flip the field for his offense on many occasions and he could turn a game in a matter of seconds. Brian Mitchell is arguably the greatest return man ever. He was a quarterback in college and was converted to running back and return man when he was drafted by the Redskins in the fifth round of the 1990 draft. Mitchell had never returned a kickoff before and in his first preseason game in the NFL, he returned his first kickoff for a touchdown.
KR – Dick James (1955-1963)
- Founder George Preston Marshall named the team Boston Braves after the city’s Major League Baseball team. However, after a financially devastating and poorly attended season in 1932, Marshall abandoned the Braves name in favor of the Redskins. When the team moved to Washington in 1937 it retained the name.
- Boston Braves (1932)
- Boston Redskins (1933-1936)
- Washington Redskins (1937-Present)
- Ray Flaherty (1937-1942)
- Dutch Bergman (1943)
- Dudley DeGroot (1944-1945)
- Turk Edwards (1946-1948)
- John Whelchel (1949)
- Herman Ball (1949-1951)
- Dick Todd (1951)
- Curly Lambeau (1952-1953)
- John Kuharich (1954-1958)
- Mike Nixon (1959-1960)
- Bill McPeak (1961-1965)
- Otto Graham (1966-1968)
- Vince Lombardi (1969)
- Bill Audtin (1970)
- George Allen (1971-1977)
- Jack Pardee (1978-1980)
- Joe Gibbs (1981-1992)
- Richie Petibtbon (1993)
- Norv Turner (1994-2000)
- Terry Robiskie (2000)
- Marty Schottenheimer (2001)
- Steve Spurrier (2002-2003)
- Joe Gibbs (2004-2007)
- Jim Zorn (2008-2009)
- Mike Shanahan (2010-2013)
- Jay Gruden (2014-Present)
SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS
- Super Bowl XVII (1982) – Washington Redskins defeat Miami Dolphins 27-17
- Super Bowl XXII (1987) – Washington Redskins defeat Denver Broncos 42-10
- Super Bowl XXVI (1991) – Washington Redskins defeat Buffalo Bills 37-24
NFL CHAMPIONS (PRE-1966)
- 1937, 1942
SUPER BOWL APPEARANCES
- Super Bowl VII (1972) – Washington Redskins vs. Miami Dolphins
- Super Bowl XVII (1982) – Washington Redskins vs. Miami Dolphins
- Super Bowl XVIII (1983) – Washington Redskins vs. Los Angeles Raiders
- Super Bowl XXII (1987) – Washington Redskins vs. Denver Broncos
- Super Bowl XXVI (1991) – Washington Redskins vs. Buffalo Bills
NFL CHAMPIONSHIP GAMES (PRE-1966)
- 1937, 1940, 1942, 1943, 1945
NFL/NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAMES
- 1972, 1982, 1983, 1986, 1987, 1991
- 1937, 1940, 1942, 1943, 1945, 1972, 1983, 1984, 1991, 1999
- 1937, 1940, 1942, 1943, 1945, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1999, 2005, 2007, 2012, 2015
- 23-19 .548
HALL OF FAME PLAYERS
- George Allen Coach (1971-1977)
- Cliff Battles RB (1937)
- Sammy Baugh QB (1937-1952)
- Bill Dudley RB (1950-1951, 1953)
- Turk Edwards OT (1937-1940)
- Ray Flaherty Coach (1937-1942)
- Joe Gibbs Coach (1981-1992, 2004-2007)
- Darrell Green CB (1983-2002)
- Russ Grimm G (1981-1991)
- Chris Hanburger LB (1965-1978)
- Ken Houston CB (1973-1980)
- Sam Huff LB (1964-1967, 1969)
- Deacon Jones DE (1974)
- Stan Jones DT (1966)
- Sonny Jurgensen QB (1964-1974)
- Paul Krause S (1964-1967)
- Curly Lambeau Coach (1952-1953)
- Vince Lombardi Coach (1969)
- George Preston Marshall (1937-1969)
- Wayne Milner WR (1937-1941, 1945)
- Bobby Mitchell WR (1962-1968)
- Art Monk WR (1980-1993)
- John Riggins RB (1976-1979, 1981-1985)
- Deion Sanders CB (2000)
- Bruce Smith DE (2000-2003)
- Charley Taylor WR (1964-1975, 1977)
- 33 Sammy Baugh QB (1937-1952)
PRO BOWL MVP
- 1958 Gino Brito WR
- 1984 Joe Theismann QB
- 2011 DeAngelo Hall CB
COACH OF THE YEAR
- 1955 Joe Kuharich
- 1971 George Allen
- 1982 Joe Gibbs
- 1983 Joe Gibbs
- 1991 Joe Gibbs
DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
- 1964 Charley Taylor WR
- 1975 Mike Thomas RB
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
- 1983 Joe Theismann QB
- 1972 Larry Brown RB
- 1982 Mark Moseley PK
- 1983 Joe Theismann QB
SUPER BOWL MVP
- Super Bowl XVII – John Riggins RB (1982)
- Super Bowl XXII – Doug Williams QB (1987)
- Super Bowl XXVI – Mark Rypien QB (1991)