- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 2, 2014

MINNEAPOLIS — Two buses carrying Washington Redskins personnel were involved in an accident roughly a mile from TCF Bank Stadium approximately three and a half hours before the team was scheduled to face the Minnesota Vikings.

According to accounts from several team staffers, the police car escorting the two buses to the stadium failed to make a proper exit off Interstate 94 onto Huron Boulevard SE, seemingly missing the turn.

That car spun out on the highway and was came to a stop perpendicular to the flow of traffic, at which point the driver of the first bus swerved to the right to avoid colliding with the car. It hit a barricade on the side of the exit and began to skid, at which point the second bus, unable to stop, collided with the back of the first bus and pushed it through the barricade and left it hanging over the embankment.

“A little unique way to start the day getting ready for a football game when you’re five feet away from driving off a cliff onto a highway,” said Redskins coach Jay Gruden, who was bothered Sunday by a stiff neck. “It was an experience that would shake a lot of people, to be honest with you.”

The first bus carried the team’s coaches, medical personnel and other team staffers. The second bus carried approximately two dozen players who had wanted to leave the hotel and arrive at the stadium early.

“I was listening to music and I kind of looked up and saw the bus in front of us was stopped, but we were still moving,” said outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan. “The bus driver tried to slam on the brakes, but it was too late, and we wrecked the hell out of the first bus.”

Fullback Darrel Young said he was sitting in the first row of the second bus, directly behind the driver, and he hit one of his knees on the wall behind the driver’s seat upon impact. Young also said quarterback Robert Griffin III’s headphones flew off, while free safety Ryan Clark said he fell out of his seat and ended up in the aisle when the bus came to rest.

“I was just listening to my headphones, seeing that we were coming close to the other bus and you knew you were going to have impact,” Clark said. “Honestly, I was just really worried about the bus driver. The window shattered, and thank God he had on his seat belt. I ended up in the middle of the aisle, in between the seats.”

Rookie running back Silas Redd was the only player to experience any significant injury from the accident, as he was unable to play and inactive because of a back injury.

Minnesota State Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske told The Associated Press the officer in the squad car was taken to a hospital.

Those two buses left the Westin hotel in Edina, Minnesota, shortly after 8 a.m. local time. Three other buses left the team hotel at 9 a.m. and were not affected.

Messages posted on Twitter and Instagram by wide receiver Pierre Garçon and nose tackle Chris Baker, who were on the second bus, showed the windshield cracked on the right side and completely missing on the left. Chase Haslett, the son of defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, also posted a photo on Twitter showing the accident.

“It was a scary moment, honestly. We had probably a half a second, if that, to react on that bus, and that was the guys in front,” Griffin said. “We saw the bus hit the bus, and we both thought we were going to fly out the windowshield.

“It was scary to sit there in the front, because you don’t expect that being on a bus headed to the game to get in a wreck — especially to be in a wreck that bad. It could have been catastrophic.”

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