The Redskins closed out the 2005 regular season with a five-game winning streak, clinching their first playoff berth since 1999 with a 31-20, come-from-behind win over the Philadelphia Eagles.
That set them up as the No. 6 seed in the playoffs. On Jan. 7, 2006, they discarded their underdog status and defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 17-10, advancing to the divisional round against Seattle.
Back in the playoffs for the first time in 13 years, legendary head coach Joe Gibbs made it count
Like it had done all year, the defense ensured victory.
The Redskins jumped out with 14 points in the first quarter thanks to a Clinton Portis touchdown run and 51-yard fumble return by safety Sean Taylor.
When the Redskins offense stalled in the second half, the defense picked it up.
They stopped the Bucs on two key fourth downs, the last of which resulting in a game-sealing interception by Marcus Washington. It was the second interception they stole from Chris Simms, and, in the process, avenged a one-point loss to Tampa Bay earlier that season.
Gibbs snapped a tie with Chuck Noll for third (17) on the career playoff wins list behind Tom Landry (20) and Don Shula (19).
“There were two really good defenses out there,” Gibbs said after the win. “Our defense just played outstanding. I’m really proud of them. I thought we were in real trouble there at the end. But our defense rose up again.”
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