I’m torn when it comes to picking the all-time #67 for the Washington Redskins.
There are two candidates, both with flaws and strengths, and no clear-cut winner. Let’s take a look at their resumes.
Ray Brown: Brown had two stints with the Redskins, which doesn’t sound that remarkable until you consider that his first run in Washington began in 1989 and his second ended in January of 2006.
The charismatic Brown actually began his career with the Cardinals in 1986. He started his final game in a playoff contest against the Seahawks. At 43, he was one of the oldest players in history to start an NFL playoff game. His Approximate Value (AV) rating on Pro Football Reference was 35 while playing for the Skins.
Rusty Tillman: Tillman was a fan-favorite linebacker for the Redskins in the 1970s. Well, linebacker was his official roster position, but Tillman was known as a special-teams, uh, specialist. He played over 100 games, all with the Redskins, during an eight-season career. His AV is 30, slightly lower than Brown’s.
Nicknamed “The King” for his special-teams prowess, Tillman played on several playoff teams with Washington, serving as special-teams captain from 1974 through 1977. Younger (but not too young) fans may remember him best as the head coach of the XFL’s New York / New Jersey Hitmen. There, he “feuded” with XFL announcer Jesse “The Body” Ventura in a confrontation in which only one of the participants seemed interested.
The Verdict: I was a big Ray Brown fan, but it’s tough to put him ahead of Tillman. Brown was undoubtedly the better player overall. The problem is that his best years were with other teams. Brown even made a Pro Bowl with the 49ers.
During his first Redskins stint, Brown either wasn’t playing, or he played on largely bad teams. During his second tenure, Brown was one of the oldest players in the league. Although he performed well for a man of his relatively advanced age, Brown wasn’t one of the better players on those teams.
Tillman never reached the heights that Brown would reach away from Washington. But Tillman never left Washington, either. Tillman’s teams were also consistent winners, whereas Brown’s were hit and miss.
This one is a tough call. I lean Tillman, but I could be talked into Brown.
As such, I leave it up to you, the readers. Make your opinion known in the poll below, and settle this once and for all!
Who is the greatest #67 in Redskins history?
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