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New QB Coach Cavanaugh’s Playing Career

Posted by Jake Kring-Schreifels on January 29, 2015 – 5:41 pm

(AP Image)

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Many times, good coaches don’t have good athletic resumes.

That’s not the case for Matt Cavanaugh, the newly announced Redskins quarterbacks coach, who has spent many years as both a player and coach in the NFL.

Though overlooked as a quarterback at the University of Pittsburgh, thanks largely to running back Tony Dorsett, Cavanaugh put together an impressive college career there.

He guided undefeated Pitt to the 1976 National Championship and was named the Sugar Bowl MVP after a 27-3 victory over Georgia. He completed 10-of-18 passes for 192 yards and a touchdown along with a rushing score.

He even got a nice shout out today.

Take a look at the video below of Cavanaugh during a 1976 midseason game against Duke, where he broke a school record throwing five touchdowns. You’ve got to love the “Rocky” theme music in the background.

The native of Youngstown, Ohio, earned All-America honors as a senior in 1977, leading Pitt to a Gator Bowl victory over Clemson.

That year he threw for 15 touchdowns, just six interceptions and 1,844 yards, the second most passing yards in Pittsburgh history behind quarterback Ken Lucas’ 1,921 in 1965.

Cavanaugh was taken by the New England Patriots in the second round of the 1978 NFL Draft. He went on to have short stints with the 49ers, Eagles and Giants, earning two Super Bowl rings as the backup quarterback behind Joe Montana and Jeff Hostetler.

He finished his NFL career with 28 touchdowns and 4,332 total passing yards.

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