Quarterback Jim Kelly of the Buffalo Bills is helped off the field during Super Bowl XXVI against the Washington Redskins at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Redskins won the game, 37-24.
Remember the last time the Redskins faced the Bills at a neutral site? Although it was 20 years ago I still remember it well. Back on January 26, 1992 the Redskins made a mess of the Bills all over the Metrodome’s Astroturf and at the end of the day they were Super Bowl Champions for the 3rd time in 10 seasons. I was a spoiled fan back then. I thought the Super Bowl Championships would keep coming every 3 or 4 years…
The 91’ Skins were one of the best teams I’ve ever seen. They lost 2 games by a total 5 points and one of those losses was on the last game of the regular season when they didn’t start key players. They won 7 games by 20 points or more and their average margin of victory was 16 points. They scored 30+ points per game and were #1 in the league in offense, #2 in defense. Do you know how hard it is to be the #2 defense in the league when you’re winning every game by 20 points? There’s so much garbage yards given up late in those games…the defense was amazing.
The year started off with Super Bowl predictions from several media outlets including Playboy magazine, which led to a famous interview of Joe Gibbs by Steve Buckhantz. Playboy was right, after mowing thru the regular season and beating the Falcons and Lions by a combined 48 points the Super Bowl was here.
The game started with the Bills Pro Bowl running back (and future Hall of Famer) Thurman Thomas on the sideline because he couldn’t find his helmet. It ended with Thomas totaling just 13 yards on 10 carries…and he’s still looking for a Super Bowl ring. The Redskins would jump out to a 17-0 lead at halftime and led 24-0 in the 3rd quarter. By the early 4th quarter it was all but over as the Redskins led 37-10. A couple garbage time TD’s made the score look a bit more respectful at 37-24.
The Redskins were paced by MVP Mark Rypien who passed for 292 yards and 2 TD’s. Gary Clark and Art Monk had nearly identical stat lines. Clark had 7 receptions for 114 yards and a TD. Monk went 7-113-0. Monk had a TD reception taken off the board early in the game due to instant replay. Ricky Ervins rushed 13 times for 72 yards while Earnest Byner had 72 total yards and a TD. Short yardage specialist Gerald Riggs rushed for only 7 yards but had 2 TD’s.
Defensively the Redskins intercepted Jim Kelly 4 times. Darrell Green and Kurt Gouveia each had a pick and Brad Edwards (who was all over the field all night) added 2 picks for 56 return yards. Fred Stokes, Alvoid Mays, Jason Buck, Wilber Marshall and Jumpy Geathers each had a sack. I loved Jumpy Geathers.
The 1991 Redskins were a special team. As I said before, they were one of the greatest teams I’ve ever seen…not in Redskins history, in NFL history.
Cheers and Hail