After yesterday’s South Team practice at the Senior Bowl, Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan sat down with Redskins Nation’s Larry Michael to discuss, among other things, a distant memory with Redskins great Mark Rypien.
It all began with a reminiscing of the last time Shanahan served on a Senior Bowl coaching staff in 1986, as an offensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos. In that year’s draft class, there was a senior quarterback out of Washington State University by the name of Mark Rypien.
Rypien was a mid-level prospect with a strong arm and one solid senior season under his belt, but lacked the résumé for an invitation to the Senior Bowl.
That is, until the three quarterbacks in front of him on the North Team went down with injury, including Ken Norseth who came out of the bowl game needing 40 stitches for his mouth.
Good grief, that’s major surgery.
The Redskins-related point here, is that Rypien went from a non-invite to the star of the show. According to an AP story that ran in LA Times, Rypien went 13-for-17 for 168 yards and a touchdown, en route to a North Team victory.
Of his prospect status, he told AP after the game, quite simply:
“I don’t think I did anything to hurt myself.”
Rypien practiced with Shanahan only one day that week (Friday), but the latter remembers being impressed by what he saw. Here is Shanahan in his own words (around the 1:50 mark):
Fortunately for Redskins fans, the Redskins scouts and coaching staff also got a good look at Rypien and snatched him up in the sixth round. It’s hard to re-write history now, but can you imagine how different both franchises might have been if Shanahan had gotten his way?
Tags: larry michael, mark rypien, mike shanahan, Redskins Nation, senior bowl, washington redskins
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