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Sometimes upsets are not upsetting

In an article about the Patriots setting records my big concern was that we'd be on the receiving end of a poster shot for their season, due to them absolutely ruining us 52-7. Instead:

Since 1980, only five NFL games have had a point spread of 20 or more, according to Bell (online at Of more than 6,700 games in Bell's sample, 112 (1.66 percent) had lines of 141/2 points or higher, and five of those 112 underdogs won their games outright.

The biggest underdogs to win the game outright were the Washington Redskins, who beat the Dallas Cowboys 24-17 as 17 1/2 -point underdogs Dec. 3, 1995.

Holy crapoley (pssst, we're underdogs this week, too). Fortunately I have my trusty Redskins Encyclopedia on hand to fact check. Wouldn't you know it, the 1995 Redskins won 1/3rd of their games against the Dallas Cowboys. The principals involved were Norv Turner, Gus Frerotte, and Terry Allen, among others. I'm surprised the line was so hefty on the 2nd Cowboys game, seeing as we beat them earlier in the year 27-23 at home. That year the Cowboys lost just four games, none of them in the postseason, and hoisted the Lombardi trophy with a victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers, 27-17.

According to the Redskins Encyclopedia:

With the season a wash, Turner named Shuler the starter, and the Redskins again shocked the Cowboys, 24-17, before...
losing. Heath Shuler beat a Super Bowl winning Cowboys team. That is all.