The funny thing about Pat Fischer is—he was supposed to be on the downside of his career when he came to the Redskins.
He had already played seven seasons for St. Louis, where he was a two-time Pro Bowler. Now, he would try his luck in D.C. after going to the Skins as a free agent. The end result? Fischer played another ten seasons and left a legacy as one of the best cornerbacks in Redskins history.
The diminutive Fischer stood just 5’9” and weighed only 170 pounds. His stature made his impressive tackling all the more remarkable. Fischer could cover, too. He recorded a 10-interception season with the Cardinals, and he continued to be a ball hawk after moving over to the Redskins, recording 27 picks with Washington.
By his second season in D.C., Fischer had made the Pro Bowl and earned All-Pro honors. He was a remarkably consistent performer throughout his Redskins tenure. From 1968 (his first season in Washington) through 1976, Fischer intercepted at least two passes each year. At age 36, in his last full season, Fischer picked off five passes.
His tenacity in spite of his size made him one of the most memorable figures of that period of Redskins football. Perhaps the most vivid examples of Fischer’s endless determination and remarkable skill were his battles with the Eagles’ Harold Carmichael.
Carmichael, a star wideout for Philly, stood 6’8”, giving him a height advantage of almost a foot over Fischer. Still, Fischer more than held his own.
Fischer boosted the Redskin defense during an era of great success. Washington finished with a winning record seven years in a row over Fischer’s last seven years, including five playoff appearances and a Super Bowl appearance in 1972.
Despite playing seven seasons with another team before joining the Redskins, Fischer is still seventh on Washington’s all-time interceptions list. Overall, Fischer played in a remarkable 213 NFL games, which was an all-time record for cornerbacks at the time of his retirement.
The three-time Pro Bowler earned a spot in the Redskins Ring of Fame. He also won a place as one of the 70 Greatest Redskins. His 56 career interceptions are good for a tie for 18th all-time in NFL history (he was tied for 8th at the time of his retirement).
His toughness, longevity, and hard-nosed play despite his size makes Fischer a worthy addition to the list of all-time Redskins.
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