clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Redskins By The (Jersey) Numbers: #31 Charley Harraway

New, comments

Today we look back on Charley Harraway’s time in Washington

Main Line Autographs

I am by no means an expert or a consumer of football’s vintage game action. Somewhat embarrassingly I am uninformed and uneducated about many Redskins greats that played in the 60’s and 70’s. My dad is a native Washingtonian and growing up he would watch all these players and when I was young try and get me interested in them and the game as well. I can’t say many stood out in my memory despite his many attempts but out of the handful that did Charlie Harraway was definitely one. To put it succinctly, Harraway’s running style is what the modern day Redskins are trying to get back to. When he’s talked about his name is synonymous with words like “tough”, “hard-nosed”, and “grinder”. Looking back on some of Charley’s runs his style, toughness, and versatility is even more admirable.

He started his career with the Cleveland Browns and played there from ‘66 to ‘68. Harraway really made a name for himself when he joined the Redskins in 1969. Harraway played the fullback position and was known for dishing out punishment on just about all of his runs. Though the use of the fullback position was more common back in that era Harraway still put up great stats on the ground for the time and for the position as he gathered 2,659 yards and 20 touchdowns on the ground during his five years with the Redskins. Harraway was also a great receiving threat out of the backfield and caught 146 passes for 1,142 yards and 6 touchdowns.

Certainly a quality not to be lost despite his offensive talents marked by stats was that Harraway was a hell of a blocker. Harraway cleared the way for running back Larry Brown helping Brown achieve a few seasons with over 1,000 yards rushing. Enthusiasts of blocking and the old, more brutal style of football will love taking a look back at Harraway’s tenure with the Redskins.

Harraway (now 72) gave an illuminating interview in 2012 regarding just how much the style of football and attitudes regarding health have changed. He details how it is hard to remember or how his memories leave him entirely regarding specifics of games, sometimes he’ll suffer episodes where he can't remember his surroundings, he has been told by doctors he has early signs of Alzheimer's, he can’t drive, and sometimes will put his keys in the refrigerator. I hope Charley can live out the rest of his life in relative comfort with his wife but am reminded when I put in the time and research into pieces like this the enormous cost of to the players providing entertainment to the game we love.

There are a few more notable Skins to wear #31 including Don Bosseler and David Terrell.

Poll

Who was the best Redskins to wear #31?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    Charley Harraway
    (85 votes)
  • 1%
    Don Bosseler
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    David Terrell
    (1 vote)
  • 1%
    Matt Jones
    (2 votes)
  • 1%
    Brandon Merriweather
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Darryl Pounds
    (1 vote)
  • 20%
    Rock Cartwright
    (24 votes)
  • 0%
    Other (please say in comments!)
    (1 vote)
118 votes total Vote Now