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Hail To The Redskins Walk: Part 7

Posted by Brian Tinsman on September 10, 2011 – 12:00 pm

Hello ’90’s, my old friend.  Hanson sounds like legitimate music, skateboarding is cool (the first time around), and the Redskins come into the decade riding a wave of talent and determination.

The 1990s panel on the Redskins history wall is book-ended with a flurry of franchise activity at the beginning and end of the decade.  The team soared into the ’90’s behind the arm of Mark Rypien and the sure hands of Art Monk and The Posse.

The Redskins kicked off the 1990s with a Super Bowl run in 1991 that made them Kings of the World once again.  The Redskins dominate the Buffalo Bills 37-24 and Mark Rypien is named Super Bowl MVP, going 18-of-33 for 292 yards and two touchdowns. The defense shuts down the high-powered Bills offense, limited Thurman Thomas to 10 yards and sacked Jim Kelly five times.

When head coach Joe Gibbs retired in 1993, he took some of the magic with him, and the team needed a spark.  In 1997, the doors opened on Jack Kent Cooke Stadium in Landovery, Md., a veritable palace for NFL football.  In 1999, the team was sold to life-long fan and marketing and communications mogul Daniel Snyder.  The team wrapped up the decade standing atop the NFC East with a 10-6 record, their first division title since 1991.

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1930s * 1940s * 1950s * 1960s * 1970s * 1980s

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Hail To the Redskins Walk: Part 6

Posted by Brian Tinsman on September 9, 2011 – 10:01 am

Welcome to the 1980s.  Michael Jackson was the King of Pop, fluorescent paint was in, and the Redskins were the best team in football.

The 1980s panel on the Redskins history wall is by far the largest, and rightfully so.  This was the Burgundy and Gold age of enlightenment in the NFL, when The Hogs dominated the line of scrimmage and The Diesel rumbled the gridiron.

The Redskins kicked off the 1980s by making the single greatest coaching hire in franchise history, bringing Chargers offensive coordinator Joe Gibbs over from San Diego.  During the two labor strikes in the decade, Gibbs engineered his team-first rosters all the way to Super Bowl victories.

Whether it was by air or by ground, the Redskins offense was unstoppable and the defensive line was impenetrable on the biggest stages.  Whether it was Joe Theismann, Doug Williams or Mark Rypien, the Redskins were blessed with prolific passers and the steady defense of young defensive back Darrell Green.

This decade was also the heyday for RFK stadium, which literally shook from the pulsating Redskins faithful.  The roar of “We Want Dallas!” still rings in the ears of those that were there, and the Redskins-Cowboys rivalry was never bigger.

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1930s * 1940s * 1950s * 1960s * 1970s

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Madden Football Is Shockingly Accurate

Posted by Matt Terl on February 3, 2009 – 2:09 pm

Last week, I mentioned that Tecmo Super Bowl and Madden 09 had both generated Super Bowl predictions through simulation. Tecmo Super Bowl was, somewhat unsurprisingly, flat-out wrong. The Cardinals didn’t win, the players were NOT two-dimensional and pixelated, and each team had more than eight plays in their playbook.

Madden’s prediction, though … that one was a little closer. A lot closer, actually. Chris Littmann at First Cuts explains:

Score at halftime
Sim: 21-7 Steelers
Real game: 17-7 Steelers

Final score
Sim: 28-24 Steelers
Real game: 27-23

Ben Roethlisberger
Sim: 21/28 for 238 yards
Real game: 21/30 for 256 yards

There are more in the link, include an EXACT prediction of Santonio Holmes’s receiving yards. Between this demonstration of the power of the Madden AI, the recent University of Oregon survey indicating that Madden players are smarter football fans, and the early revelation of some of the features coming up in Madden 10, it’s been a good week for the Madden franchise.

And, actually, the man who helped create the video game franchise has been receiving just about uniformly good reviews for his job covering the Super Bowl. So maybe it’s just been a good week for Madden, full stop. Read more »

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Friday, January 30: Today, 26 Years Ago

Posted by Matt Terl on January 30, 2009 – 10:23 am

26 years ago today at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, the Washington Redskins defeated the Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl XVII. Many of today’s most passionate Redskins fans weren’t even born yet, but those who were probably remember where they watched the game, who they were with, what they were wearing, what food was served, and everything else.

What they might not remember, unless they were there, is that the temperature at kickoff was 61 degrees, and the wind was slight from the north. That Don Orr was the field judge, and that the attendance was 103,667.

I don’t remember those things either (although I do know from watching the highlights that the weather was good that day), but I know them because I just found in the files here at Redskins Park the detailed game summary produced by the teams’ stats crew.

These are still generated today, with updates handed out in the press box after each quarter and a complete booklet photocopied and distributed after the game, but they look a little slicker now.

Here are two pages of the game book from the preseason Hall of Fame game in Canton, just as an example. Read more »

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Some Redskins Thoughts on Super Ads

Posted by Matt Terl on January 29, 2009 – 4:59 pm

ALL of these commercials are vastly superior to Mean Joe, though. I don’t care what any of these people — OR any top ten lists — say.

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The Real MVP of Super Bowl XXII?

Posted by Matt Terl on January 28, 2009 – 4:51 pm

The MVP of Super Bowl XXII was Doug Williams, of course — and rightly so. All he did was shake off an injury (and a day-before-the-game root canal), put behind him an entire week’s worth of stupid questions about being the first black quarterback to start a Super Bowl, and lead his offense to one of the single greatest quarters of football ever played.

Here’s his statline for that quarter, just in case you’ve forgotten: 9 of 11 for 228 yards and FOUR touchdowns. In one quarter. So, yeah, he justifiably was the MVP.

But the SI.com article I linked to in the last post contained an interesting anecdote that deserves spotlighting. Apparently Nils Lofgren, guitarist for Bruce Springsteen’s E-Street Band, tells a story that argues suggesting that maybe Springsteen himself should’ve been the Redskins MVP:

Nils Lofgren has a rarity. He has a Bruce Springsteen football story. As Liz rightly points out, Springsteen is not a football fan. Baseball is his thing, even if he made that regrettable “speedball” word choice in his song Glory Days. Lofgren, though, remembers watching Super Bowl XXII with Bruce. They were at some party, Lofgren doesn’t even remember who hosted it. What he does remember is that it was Washington playing Denver, and everyone in the room except Nils was rooting for the Broncos. Nils grew up in Washington, and he remains a fanatical Redskins fan. He’s such a big football fan that, for years, he played the music for John Madden’s All-Madden Team show.

Well, you might remember, Denver led that Super Bowl 10-0 after the first quarter. Everyone was ripping Lofgren. They were all trying to get him to make bets. And then, all of a sudden, Bruce spoke up.

Read more »

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The Debate on Super Bowl Halftime Shows

Posted by Matt Terl on January 28, 2009 – 3:38 pm

I walked into a bit of an argument today — or maybe heated conversation would be more accurate. Essentially, Kedric Golston and Lorenzo Alexander maintain that Mary J. Blige is just as well known as Bruce Springsteen. Not as popular, exactly, nor as successful, but possessing just as much name recognition. On the other side — the “Bruce Springsteen has sold over fifteen million records” side — were physical therapist Elliott Jermyn and Alex Buzbee.

What prompted the entire discussion was, of course, the fact that Bruce Springsteen is the scheduled Super Bowl halftime show. This fact has caused no end of discomfort for Springsteen’s fans, and I’m less than thrilled with the selection myself, although for completely different reasons.

Following on the heels of Tom Petty at last year’s game, this seems like an awful lot of Old White Guy classic rock two years in a row. On the other hand, I’m not sure that Mary J. Blige (or someone else of her stature) is going to keep people glued to their TVs.

Over at Shutdown Corner, Chris Chase counts down his top five all-time memorable Super Bowl halftime shows, and does a solid job of it. One of the ones he misses, though, seems to me to be the best model to follow: the Aerosmith/*NSync/Britney Spears/Mary J. Blige/Nelly performance from Super Bowl XXXV.

Read more »

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Tecmo Bowl Disagrees With Madden

Posted by Matt Terl on January 28, 2009 – 2:32 pm

Well, if I’m going to point out the Madden preview of the Super Bowl, I should also give equal time to Jon Bois’s Tecmo Super Bowl version over at Mouthpiece Sports. This version of Video Super Bowl XLIII has the same final scores, but assigned to the opposite teams — that is, Arizona wins 28-24.

There’s no Play of the Game for this one (although Terelle Smith’s early recovery and return for a touchdown of a fumbled punt return would have to be a candidate), and there are no detailed statistics or faux-authentic game write-up. What there is instead is a fourteen minute video with a really good soundtrack.

At this rate, I’m going to be completely tired of watching these teams go head to head long before kickoff on Sunday.

http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docid=-8933620074797503630&hl=en&fs=true Read more »

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Steelers Win Video Super Bowl XLIII

Posted by Matt Terl on January 28, 2009 – 12:02 pm

Well, EA Sports has done their traditional annual Super Bowl preview simulation, and the Video Steelers win by the surprisingly close score of 28-24. Video Ben Roethlisberger gets the MVP award, but it certainly sounds like he stole it from Video Santonio Holmes.

In the third quarter, the Cardinals managed to close the gap to 21-14 and looked to have momentum swinging their direction. But when Holmes shook double coverage to catch a 17-yard touchdown over the middle of the field, he gave the Steelers a lead that would not be broken.

Holmes ended the play with an emphatic spike in the back of the end zone as he realized he was about to become immortalized as a Super Bowl legend.

I have one question about the whole thing, though — and it’s not how they know what Video Santonio is thinking during his end zone celebration: why is there no flash movie of the matchup online? Not the whole game, necessarily — even I couldn’t bring myself to watch that, I don’t think — but if you’re going to the trouble to provide statistics, a Play of the Game, and a 250 word game story, why not toss up a highlight reel as well? Am I really the only person who would be amused by that?

(UPDATE: Video after the jump; hat tip to The Sporting Blog.) Read more »

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