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1969 Washington Redskins season

1969 Washington Redskins season
Head coach Vince Lombardi
Home field RFK Stadium
Record 7–5–2
Division place 2nd NFL Capitol
Playoff finish did not qualify
Previous season Next season
< 1968 1970 >

The 1969 Washington Redskins began with the team trying to improve on their 5–9 record from 1968, and they did by hiring legendary Green Bay Packers head coach Vince Lombardi, and Pro Football Hall of Famer Sam Huff came out of retirement to play for Vince 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.[1] The night before the Super Bowl, Lombardi met with Redskins pres Edward Bennett Williams for dinner at Tony Sweet’s restaurant.[2] Lombardi agreed to coach the Redskins because he had the opportunity to become a shareholder with the Redskins.[3]

NFL Draft

Main article: 1969 NFL Draft
Round Pick Player Position School/Club 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
6 139 Harold McLinton Linebacker Southern
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
15 374 Paul Rogers Tackle Virginia
16 399 Mike Washington Linebacker Southern
17 426 Rich Dobbert Defensive End Springfield (Mass.)

Vince Lombardi

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 America's most transient of cities.

Lombardi lasted only one season with the Redskins; he was diagnosed with terminal cancer during the 1970 offseason and died shortly before the regular season was to start.

Regular season


Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
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


NFL Capitol
Dallas Cowboys 11 2 1 .846 6–0 9–1 369 223 W3
Washington Redskins 7 5 2 .583 3–2–1 6–3–1 307 319 L1
New Orleans Saints 5 9 0 .357 1–5 4–6 311 393 W1
Philadelphia Eagles 4 9 1 .308 1–4–1 4–5–1 279 377 L4

Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.


  1. ^ When Pride Still Mattered, David Maraniss,p. 452, Simon & Schuster, 1999, ISBN 978-0-684-84418-3
  2. ^ When Pride Still Mattered, David Maraniss,p. 453, Simon & Schuster, 1999, ISBN 978-0-684-84418-3
  3. ^ When Pride Still Mattered, David Maraniss,p. 457, Simon & Schuster, 1999, ISBN 978-0-684-84418-3