The Washington Times - June 13, 2008, 09:22AM

 

The best — as I see it! 

SEE RELATED:


Part I: The Offensive Line

by

Robert Janis

 

 

What is really fun about being a fan of a long established pro sports franchise is that you have an ever filling reservoir of players from which to choose for your list of best in a particular position. And, being a fan of the team whether it is for 50 years or five years means that you can fall back on your own personal opinion when making your own list of the best.

 

What follows is my list of the best Washington Redskins by squad.

 

Part I will cover the offensive line.

Part II will identify the best receivers.

Part III will list the best quarterbacks.

Part IV will describe the best running backs.

Part V goes into the best defensive linemen.

Part VI covers the linebackers.

Part VII is for the defensive linemen.

Part VIII will discuss the best linebackers.

Part IX will i.d. the best defensive backs.

 

Again, this is my opinion. I encourage you to post your list of the best in a particular position as a comment to my article that covers that position. For example, no doubt you have your own opinions on who were the best Washington Redskins offensive linemen. Post your picks as a comment to my article on offensive linemen, etc. 

 

Okay, here we go.

 

The best offensive linemen in the history of the Washington Redskins franchise has to be the group that blocked for the 1991 Redskins that went 14-2 and beat the Buffalo Bills to win Super Bowl XXVI. That was one of the best teams to ever play. They won 11 games before they lost their first. And they lost one more game that season because Coach Gibbs decided to rest the starters in the last game. 

 

Anyway, the offensive line was so good, quarterback Mark Rypien was sacked only nine times the entire season. And the running game averaged 128.1 yards per game. 

 

That line included:

 

Jim Lachey

Raleigh McKenzie

Jeff Bostic

Mark Schlereth

Joe Jacoby

 

Jim Lachey played with the Skins from 1989 through 1995. He was selected nine times to the All Pro team and was in the Pro Bowl three times (1987, 1990, 1991). He also played for the San Diego Chargers (1985 through 1987) and the Oakland Raiders (1988).

 

Raleigh McKenzie played in two super bowls for the Redskins, is one of the 70 Greatest Redskins of All Time and was selected to the All NFL Team in 1991.

 

Jeff Bostic is one of the 70 Greatest Redskins of All Time. 

 

Mark Schlereth played in three super bowls, one with the Redskins and two with the Denver Broncos. He also played in two Pro Bowls (1991 as a Redskin, and 1998 as a Bronco).

 

Joe Jacoby played in four super bowls for the Redskins, is one of the 70 Greatest Redskins of All Time, selected to four Pro Bowls and named to the NFL 1980s All Decade Team.

 

But there are other linemen who played on other Redskins teams who I believe were just as good. They were:

 

Russ Grimm

Tre Johnson

Mark May

Len Hauss

 

Russ Grimm has to be included in any list of the Redskins best offensive linemen because he was the soul of the Hogs. He made Pro Bowls, he played in Super Bowls (plural) and he will be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. There’s a story that Joe Theismann tells about the NFC title game against Dallas before Super Bowl XVII. The Skins were leading at the end of the fourth quarter and were completely dominating the Cowboys’ defensive line. Theismann wanted to run some wide sweeps but Grimm kept saying no and calling for up the gut runs. So Theismann did what Grimm requested. I guess you don’t say no to Russ Grimm. He wanted to end the game showing his complete dominance of the Cowboy lineman he was assigned to block. He played in four consecutive Pro Bowls, was selected to the NFL 1980s All Decade Team and is one of the 70 Greatest Redskins of All Time.

 

I selected Tre Johnson, a guard who played on some Norv Turner teams (1994 through 2002), as one of the best because the guy would dominate his opponent. He made so many pancake blocks — I mean he put his opponent flat on his back — so many times I think people lost count. He played in one Pro Bowl. 

 

Mark May was probably the first hog. He was the Skins number one draft choice in 1981 and became the foundation of the first hogs. I think the players even called him “Grandpa Hog.” He played in one Pro Bowl and is one of the 70 Greatest Redskins of All Time. 

 

Len Hauss played center in the 1960s and early ‘70s. Believe it or not, he holds the record for the most consecutive starts by a Redskin. He never missed a game. And if he got hurt, he played through it. You can find out more about Len Hauss by reading the article I wrote about him at http://capitalnewsservice.net/Hauss.htm. And you can learn more about Joe Jacoby by reading the article I did on him at http://capitalnewsservice.net/Jacoby.htm.

 

Now it’s your turn. Who do you select as the best offensive linemen to ever play for the Washington Redskins.