The Redskins and Cowboys will clash on Sunday night football to determine who will win the NFC East title. It will be the Redskins’ 106th appearance in a prime time game. Since playing in their first Monday night game in 1970, the Redskins have played many big games under the bright lights on national TV. Here is a chronological look at some of the biggest and best Redskins prime time games.
Redskins 38, Rams 24 12/13/72—The Redskins could clinch the team’s first playoff spot in 25 years with a win and coach George Allen had a chance to get that sweet victory at the expense of the team that had fired him after the previous season. Billy Kilmer threw three touchdown passes, including a 70-yard bomb to Roy Jefferson, to help Washington build a 31-10 third-quarter lead. But the Rams cut the lead to 31-24 and had the ball in the fourth quarter. It all ended well as Speedy Duncan picked off a Roman Gabriel pass and dashed 46 yards for the playoff-clinching score.
Packers 48, Redskins 47 10/17/83—The first two touchdowns were scored on fumble returns but the quarterbacks, Washington’s Joe Theismann (398 yards passing) and Green Bay’s Lynn Dickey (422), took over from there. What is still the highest scoring game in the history of Monday night football went back and forth. The Redskins took a 47-45 lead with 2:50 left to play on Theismann’s five-yard touchdown pass to Joe Washington. But Dickey got the Packers into position to get a 20-yard field goal with 55 second left and the Packers went up by one. The Redskins had one final chance but Mark Moseley missed on a 39-yard field goal attempt with three seconds left.
Redskins 17, Giants 13 10/27/91—The Redskins came into this game 7-0 but they still carried a big chip on their collective shoulder. The Giants had beaten them six straight times and New York was the defending Super Bowl champion. It looked like the so-called Giants Jinx was going to continue as the Redskins were dominated in the first half, getting outgained 207 yards to 35. The only good thing going into intermission was that the Redskins trailed just 13-0 on the scoreboard. In the second half the Redskins came roaring back on the strength of two touchdown passes from Mark Rypien to Gary Clark. The first covered seven yards; the second was a perfectly thrown 54-yard bomb. Clark, who had dropped a sure touchdown pass in the first half, bobbled Rypien’s pass for a moment but secured it to give the Redskins the winning points.
Redskins 26, 49ers 20 (OT) 12/26/99—The Redskins knew they had to beat the lowly 49ers (4-10 coming into the game) to win to take the NFC East title. They claimed that prize but it wasn’t easy. The Redskins took a 7-3 lead in the second quarter but then saw the game 49ers go on a 17-3 run to take a 20-10 lead into the fourth quarter. Quarterback Brad Johnson, who threw for 471 yards, rallied the Redskins. He moved them into position for a 34-yard Brett Conway field goal and then scored on sneak from a yard out to tie the game with 3:28 remaining. The Niners quickly moved into field goal position but linebacker Sean Barber saved the day by forcing a fumble that the Redskins recovered to send the game into overtime. In the first drive of the extra session it took the Redskins just four plays to move to the game winner, a 33-yard pass from Johnson to wide-open running back Larry Centers.
Redskins 24, Bears 16 12/6/07—The Redskins had buried Sean Taylor just three days before this Thursday night game so the loss of starting quarterback Jason Campbell to a knee injury late in the second quarter seemed to be relatively very minor adversity. Todd Collins, the backup quarterback who had seen no more than mop up action in his previous 10 seasons in the league, threw a touchdown pass to tight end Todd Yoker just before halftime to give the Redskins a 7-0 lead at intermission. The Redskins expanded their lead to 14-0 on a one-yard Mike Sellers TD blast in the second quarter. Chicago rallied and with the Redskins up 17-13 in the late going, Collins fired a third and six pass over the middle to Ladell Betts and the running back bolted in to complete the clinching 16-yard touchdown play. The win was the first of four straight to close out the season and to earn a wild card playoff spot.
Tomorrow: The biggest games ever in D. C.