The Washington Redskins have a positive and negative history. The latter involves their slur of a nickname that has offended many, but also owner Dan Snyder’s reluctance to make a change has left a bitter taste in the mouth of many NFL fans. We can argue until the end of time about what they should or shouldn’t do when it comes to this controversy. I think the easy solution would be to call themselves the Washington Warriors and use their old logo with the spear on the helmet from 1965-69, or a cursive W similar to the one on the MLB Nationals hats, while keeping the team colors. But enough about that.
The positive surrounds the decades of success they’ve had on the field as they’ve won the 5th most games in NFL history (578). Since their first season in 1932, Washington has won 5 League Championships, 2 before the AFL-NFL merger in 1937 and 1942, 3 Super Bowls (XVII, XXII, XXVI), 5 Conference Championships, 14 Division titles, and made the playoffs 24 times.
19 men who’ve played in a Washington uniform have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but only four can be on the team’s Mount Rushmore.
- No owners, unless they were also coaches, and their place on this list is based on their contributions as coach. No General Managers or Personnel executives. Just those who directly affected the games on Sunday. I will make a separate list for those contributors soon.
- Key contributors to the team’s history and success, not just fan favorites or box office draws.
- Can you tell the franchise’s story without them? If no, they’re on the list.
Darrell Green (1983-2002) was the definition of a shut down corner that paved the way for the likes of the Deion Sanders, Darrell Revis’ and Richard Sherman’s. Most football fans remember him for his elite speed; four times he won the NFL’s Fastest Man Competition. Green has the record for playing the most seasons (20) and games (295) by a defensive back with one franchise. The 7-time Pro Bowler (1984, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1996, 1997) and 4-time All-Pro (1986, 1987, 1990, 1991) won two Super Bowl Championships (XXII, XXVI) with Washington. He’s the team’s all-time leader in tackles (1,163), interceptions (54), and defensive touchdowns (8). Green is a member of the NFL’s 1990s All-Decade Team, the Redskins Ring of Fame, 70th Greatest Redskins and Pro Football Hall of Fame (2008). in 2010, NFL.com ranked him 75th on their “100 Greatest Players” list.
Joe Gibbs (1981-1992; 2004-2007) is the franchise’s all-time leader in coaching wins (154) and led them to three Super Bowl victories (XVII, XXII, XXVI), and twice he was named Coach of the Year (1982, 1983). Gibbs is the only NFL coach to win three Super Bowls with three different quarterbacks and starting running backs. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1996. He’s inducted into the Redskins Ring of Fame.
Sammy Baugh (1937-1952) played in an era where players were ironmen, playing on both offense and defense. The 6-time All-Pro (1937, 1940, 1942, 1943, 1945, 1947, 1948) and 5-time All-Star (1938-1942) was a two time NFL Player of the Year (1947, 1948) and led the ‘Skins to two NFL Championships in 1937 and 1942. Baugh is still the franchise leader in touchdown passes (187) and 3rd in passing yards (21,886). He’s a member of the NFL 50th and 75th Anniversary, and the NFL 1940s All-Decade Team. Washington made his jersey number 33 the only officially retired one in team history, and inducted him into the Redskins Ring of Fame and 70 Greatest Redskins. He was a member of the charter 1963 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Sonny Jurgensen (1964-1974) is second in franchise history in passing touchdowns (179), passing yards (22,585), completions (1,831) and attempts (3,155). The 5-time Pro Bowler and 3-time All-Pro led Washington to the NFL Championship in 1960. Five times Jurgensen led the NFL in passing yards (1961, 1962, 1966, 1967, 1969) and twice he led the League in touchdown passes (1961, 1967). Jurgensen is a member of the NFL’s 1960s All-Decade Team, the 70 Greatest Redskins list and the team’s Ring of Fame. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1983.
There you have it. Do you agree or disagree Redskins fans? If so, who’s not on the list that you would put on yours, and who would you replace. I want to hear from you.