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Dale Jr.: ‘Why I Love The Redskins’

Posted by Andrew Walker on December 6, 2012 – 9:53 am

(AP photo)

(AP photo)

It’s well-known that NASCAR superstar Dale Earnhardt Jr. is a huge Washington Redskins fan.

It all began after watching his first game, which happened to be Super Bowl XVII, when Washington defeated the Miami Dolphins 27-17, and game MVP John Riggins ran 38 times for 166 yards and a touchdown.

Earnhardt was in attendance at Monday night’s primetime matchup against the New York Giants, and was so excited after leaving the game — a 17-16 Redskins’ victory — that he sent ESPN NASCAR reporter Marty Smith an 848-word piece about his love for the team.

You can read the entire thing by clicking here, but here are some of my favorite parts. I think we all can relate to Earnhardt’s passion and excitement for the Redskins:

“As I got older, my loyalty to the Redskins thickened. In my eyes Joe Gibbs could do no wrong. My role models weren’t holding steering wheels and mashing gears on Sunday. They wore burgundy and gold with names like Art Monk and Darrell Green. I grew out of wrestling for yardage with the cushion. I finished school, raced cars, became a man. Through every second of my life though, I was as die-hard as one could imagine.”

“I even got an invite in 2010 to sit in the owner’s box and witness a late Sunday-night win against our rivals, the Dallas Cowboys. Only I was so nervous managing the weight of the situation that I don’t recall how much I enjoyed it.

Think about it: I was standing in a buffet line with Joe Theismann. Joe Gibbs was a half-dozen seats away from me with Redskins owner Dan Snyder studying every play, every route, every blocking assignment. I get asked one question a lot: “What celebrity encounter would render you starstruck?” The answer is simple — anyone who’s ever strapped on a Redskins helmet, much less coached them to three Super Bowls.”

“I never thought I would replicate that kind of excitement outside a race car. But there it was: that feeling. And it felt amazing. Everyone has their top-of-the-mountain moment. Outside of racing, this was mine. I was overcome with humility. How did I get from that back porch at Grandpa Gee’s house at 9 years old to here? It just felt incredibly surreal. All my years of being a fan, the ups and downs, tragedy and triumph. Now it made perfect sense.

Thank God I asked for that helmet for my birthday back in 1983. It was the right decision. Because there I was, soaking in elation with thousands of like-minded individuals, screaming victory at the top of our lungs.

Hail to the Redskins!”

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Posted in Uncategorized | 26 Comments »

26 Responses to “Dale Jr.: ‘Why I Love The Redskins’”

  1. By Joyce W. on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Have always thought of Jr. as a class act. He just proved it a little more. Hail to ’em!!

  2. By Jeff Rubis on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Thanks Dale, Jr. for being a fan of the Burgundy & Gold along with us Redskins fans, including myself. Keep up the great work in driving for Hendrick Motorsports in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

  3. By ozziemarizan on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Huge Redskins fan and a big Dale Jr fan. Great to see that he shares my passion for the Skins.

  4. By teresahulet on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Jr, Greatness responds to Greatness! Joe Gibbs and all the great players who have doned the Redskins uniform are my heros too. Rallying them all the way to another Super Bowl victory every year

  5. By Shaun oakman on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Reading this leaves a lump in the throat & a massive feeling of pride, I’m from the uk, but as far back as I can remember following American football – there has only been one team. Dale, you are a huge star – but still humbled by being in the presence of any redskins player, reading that sent shivers down my spine. I’m privileged to support the same team as you sir HTTR..

    Ps, #28 D.GREEN best corner back ever 👍

  6. By Beverly Montgomery on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    I not only like the Redskin, I love the Redskin. I know they have come a lony way and our game have been off but they never give up. Monday night game prove that we are a good team. Not only was the Ouarter back great, the whole team played their heart out. I Love them because they are strong, hardworkers, energenic, sincere men and always give their best on the field. Win or Lose, they are good Sportmen. I have been a fan since I was able to watch and understand the game. I was in a home with a lot of brothers and a dad with one television set and the guys look at sport and so did I. It will grow on you. Love the Redskins.

  7. By mbonhamwolv on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Now only if he would drive for JGR……., in my opinion, that would be nice

  8. By mbonhamwolv on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Now, only if he would drive for JGR.

  9. By Jim Kinsella on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    My Favorite Redskin memory is : Jan1st 1984… Sitting in the end zone by the band in RFK with one of my best friends Tracey… and having Darrell Green run the 64 yards on his interception right at us in the Skins 52-7 rout of the then LA Rams…

  10. By mrsnl on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    My driver is Kevin Harvick but Dale just earned about 100 Brownie Points from me for that letter!

  11. By Tony Alexander on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    I am now a Jr fan, always liked him, but now he is at the top of my short Nascar list. HTTR.

  12. By Mark Durick on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    I remember back in 1968 at my pee wee footbal banquet I was awarded my trophy from a redskins player #88 Pat Rictor. From that moment on it’s been HTTR baby. I’m now 59 tears old with two grown children. At my sons 1st birthday party the entire family was gathered around the kitchen table singing Happy Birthday to him while I was down in the family room watching the Redskins v Dolphins in super bowl XXVII. What a great day I watched the Skins win their first SB and my son dosen’t remember his dad not singing to him. By the way today my son is 30 and probably a bigger fan that his father.(NOT)

  13. By joelewd on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    I can say only two words ( IN TEARS )
    You who love the game Know exactly what those two words mean.

  14. By Dan Hale on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Well mine is not a moment but a life time.I grew up a rabid skins fan thanks to my father.He and my three brother lived and breathed the skins and seen them win three superbowls.In 91 my father was sticken with cancer.In watching my father pass away that september day and so weak he could not pick his head from the pillow he wispered to me,Son the redskins will win the superbowl for us this year.and we all know they did.We buried my father in burgandy and gold and his casket was coverd in burgandy and gold flowers.Hail to the redskins !!

  15. By iladelph on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    I’m not a fan of Nascar but I will be cheering for Dale Earnhardt from this point on.

  16. By poppyshoes on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    What a touching story. I don’t follow racing, my grandad does faithfully. I knew he was a fan, but I will cheer him on now. His feelings for this team mirrors a lot of us. I was taught the game by always wanting to curl up under my dad. Mom wanted me to go play with my sisters…but I would rather be daddy’s girl and watch football. Still remember my first redskins item of my own, foam #1 finger. I miss him but the memories are priceless.


  17. By Robyn Stultz on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    What great company to be in…Dale Earnhardt and the Washington Redskins! Life is good and about to get better! The Wins are coming for all and soom we won’t be able to wipe the smiles from our faces!

    Hailing from Upstate New York by way of Virginia!

  18. By RedskinsFanForever on Dec 6, 2012 | Reply

    Like him I became a Redskins Fan cause Of Theisman … I was in the boy scouts and met him while he was a guest speaker … it was a great time and never forgot it … times have been rough but things are looking up … HTTR

  19. By Tutankhamen Howell on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    My favorite Redskins moment was when they played the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl. We were down by 10 points and John Elway had thrown a long touchdown pass on an opening drive of the game. Doug Williams, the first black quarterback to play in a Super Bowl threw a long touchdown pass to Redskin wide receiver Ricky Sanders to make the score 7 to 10 and wake the Redskins up. After that, the Redskins never looked backed and set a record for most points scored in a quarter in the Super Bowl. Running Back Timmy Smith ran a long run for a touchdown, and Ricky Sanders caught another long touchdown pass from Doug Williams. The Redskins had 3 great wide receivers called the “Posse” and the Denver Broncos had 3 good receivers also, called the “Three Amigos”. The “Posse” prevailed this Super Bowel Sunday and crushed the Denver Broncos of whom had John Elway as quarterback 42-10. I will never forget that 80 yard touchdown pass from Doug Williams to Ricky Sanders during that game. I am 37 now and at that moment I was about 11 or 12.

  20. By corvette98 on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    season ticket holder for 22 yrs. live in SC now,but will never leave my skins.not much of a nascar follower but I just became a jr fan

  21. By Tom Creed on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    I very much enjoyed the story Dale. Great story! Growing up in Tulsa, OK., my dad started taking us ever year to the Dallas – Washington game in Dallas – first time in 1971 (I was in 1st grade). We always traveled to Dallas with another family and their son was a die hard Cowboy fan. He and I competed in everything so naturally at my first Washington – Dallas match up I bought a Redskin Banner. Well, it stuck BIG time! Through the years of greatness and the tough years but have always Loved my Redskins. My 19 year old daughter, now a freshman in college is also a die hard fan. She and the team, and Dale’s story make me very proud. HTTR!

  22. By martha henderson on Dec 7, 2012 | Reply

    69 years old an act like a giddy teen on game-day.Sit in my wheelchair an dream of being at a real game but know I can’t.Can still dream about it, close my eyes an pretend I’m sitting with the leagues owner Mr.Snyder an watch the game in real world.MR. SNYDER has done everything possible to get the best for his team an I like that he does.Hail to the Redskins!,,!!!

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