It was time to shake things up a little bit.
The Washington Redskins and Atlanta Falcons have a lot of history with and against one another.
Paths have intertwined in postseason play, the Falcons sunk their teeth into the bottom portion of the Team of the South’s monopolization over states like Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama with their establishment in 1966 and the always amazing seat cushion game that will live in Redskins and RFK Stadium lore is the best moment of all by a landslide.
Seriously nothing has even been or will be as cool as seeing the masses chucking their giveaways after it became obvious the Redskins were on their way to another playoff victory.
It doesn’t rank nearly at the same level as the rare weather phenomenon of raining cushions—unless maybe you’re the football version of Ken Burns or family—but the trade of Charlie Brown, a two-time Pro Bowler but struggling to stay healthy, for R. C. Thielemann, a three-time Hawaiian Island attendee, in 1985 did carry Super significance.
As so many other former greats that have come out of the woodworks in recent years to give an inside scope on their playing days have explained, Thielemann was caught in Joe Gibbs’ web long before he took his talents to the Nation’s Capital and was one of the reasons he preferred the Redskins as his transplant after relations with Atlanta soured.
Long before squeezing his little twigs into a pair of burgundy biker shorts, Gibbs was a running backs coach for the University of Arkansas. It was there where he recruited and struck a relationship with Thielemann and I’m sure got in his face with a motivational—yet ultra-kind—speech about his needs to block the darn runner.
As long-time NFL writer Glen Sheely noted in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the friendship between the two lead to the trade.
And who the heck didn’t want to play under Gibbs in the NFL as he navigated his way to the upper echelon of coaching?
Thielemann, who had contended all along that a trade was acceptable, warmly accepted the new team. Redskins coach Joe Gibbs recruited Thielemann for the University of Arkansas in 1974.
“I’ve been here eight years and my wife and I have made a lot of friends,” [Thielemann] said. “That’s the bad part. The good part is that I’m going to an established winner.”
Injuries eventually caught up to Theiemann, forcing him to retire somewhat early at the age of 33, but his did get some bling to show off his temporary relocation before submitting his paperwork to GM Bobby Beathard following the 1988 season.
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