1969 Washington Redskins season
|1969 Washington Redskins season|
|Head coach||Vince Lombardi|
|Home field||RFK Stadium|
|Division place||2nd NFL Capitol|
|Playoff finish||did not qualify|
The 1969 Washington Redskins began with the team trying to improve on their 5–9 record from 1968, and they did so by hiring legendary Green Bay Packers head coach Vince Lombardi. Pro Football Hall of Famer Sam Huff came out of retirement specifically to play for Lombardi.
During Super Bowl III, rumours had circulated that Vince Lombardi had job offers from the Philadelphia Eagles, the Boston Patriots, and the Washington Redskins. The night before the Super Bowl, Lombardi met with Redskins president Edward Bennett Williams for dinner at Tony Sweet's restaurant. Lombardi agreed to coach the Redskins after Williams offered him complete authority over all personnel and football operations, the position of "Executive Vice President", and a 5% ownership stake in the team.
|2||46||Eugene Epps||Defensive back||Texas-El Paso|
|3||62||Ed Cross||Running back||Pine Bluff|
|5||114||Bill Kishman||Defensive back||Colorado State|
|7||166||Jeff Anderson||Running back||Virginia|
|7||173||John Didion||Center||Oregon State|
|8||191||Larry Brown||Running back||Kansas State|
|11||269||Eric Norri||Defensive tackle||Notre Dame|
|12||295||Bob Shannon||Defensive back||Tennessee State|
|13||322||Michael Shook||Defensive back||North Texas|
|14||347||Rick Brand||Defensive tackle||Virginia|
|17||426||Rich Dobbert||Defensive end||Springfield (Massachusetts)|
After stepping down as head coach of the Packers following the 1967 NFL season, a restless Lombardi returned to coaching in 1969 with the Washington Redskins, where he broke a string of 14 losing seasons. The 'Skins would finish with a record of 7–5–2, significant for a number of reasons. Lombardi discovered that rookie running back Larry Brown was deaf in one ear, something that had escaped his parents, schoolteachers, and previous coaches. Lombardi had observed Brown's habit of tilting his head in one direction when listening to signals being called, and walked behind him during drills and said "Larry." When Brown did not answer, the coach asked him to take a hearing exam. Brown was fitted with a hearing aid, and with this correction he would enjoy a successful NFL career.
Lombardi was the first coach to get soft-bellied quarterback Sonny Jurgensen, one of the league's premier forward passers, to get into the best condition he could. He coaxed former All-Pro linebacker Sam Huff out of retirement. He even changed the team's uniform design to reflect that of the Packers, with gold and white trim along the jersey biceps, and later a gold helmet. The foundation Lombardi laid was the groundwork for Washington's early 1970s success under former L.A. Rams Coach George Allen. Lombardi had brought a winning attitude to the Nation's Capital, in the same year that the nearby University of Maryland had hired "Lefty" Driesell to coach basketball and the hapless Washington Senators named Ted Williams as manager. It marked a renaissance in sports interest in the Nation's capitol.
Lombardi lasted only one season with the Redskins; he was diagnosed with terminal cancer after the 1969 season and died shortly before the 1970 regular season was to start.
|1||September 21, 1969||at New Orleans Saints||W 26–20|| |
|2||September 28, 1969||at Cleveland Browns||L 27–23|| |
|3||October 5, 1969||at San Francisco 49ers||T 17–17|| |
|4||October 12, 1969||St. Louis Cardinals||W 33–17|| |
|5||October 19, 1969||New York Giants||W 20–14|| |
|6||October 26, 1969||at Pittsburgh Steelers||W 14–7|| |
|7||November 2, 1969||at Baltimore Colts||L 41–17|| |
|8||November 9, 1969||Philadelphia Eagles||T 28–28|| |
|9||November 16, 1969||Dallas Cowboys||L 41–28|| |
|10||November 23, 1969||Atlanta Falcons||W 27–20|| |
|11||November 30, 1969||Los Angeles Rams||L 24–13|| |
|12||December 7, 1969||at Philadelphia Eagles||W 34–29|| |
|13||December 14, 1969||New Orleans Saints||W 17–14|| |
|14||December 21, 1969||at Dallas Cowboys||L 20–10|| |
|New Orleans Saints||5||9||0||.357||1–5||4–6||311||393||W1|
Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.