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11.14.43—Baugh throws four, picks four

Dec 18, 2008, 12:26 PM EDT

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I don’t have time this morning to write a proper tribute to Slingin’ Sammy Baugh. To help you gain an appreciation of Baugh, here is my account of perhaps his greatest single game. It was a 1943 game against the Lions and Baugh was a monster on both sides of the ball, throwing four touchdown passes and intercepting four passes. From the pages of The Redskins From A to Z:

Redskins 43, Lions 20

November 14, 1943

Griffith Stadium

Sammy Baugh put on quite a show, throwing four touchdown passes, intercepting four Detroit passes, getting off an 81-yard punt and recovering a fumble just for good measure, as the Redskins beat the Lions.

Washington built a 21-0 halftime lead. Two of the touchdowns came on Baugh passes. The first was a 10-yard dart to Bob Masterson; the other traveled 28 yards to Bob Seymour. In between, Lou Rymkus tipped a screen pass, gathered it in, and stepped 12 yards unchallenged into the end zone to account for the half’s other TD.

The Redskins moved quickly to take what appeared to be complete command in the second half as they drove 73 yards in six plays at the outset of the third quarter. From the Lion 10, Baugh scrambled around long enough to find Masterson in the end zone for a 28-0 lead.

Detroit made a bid to get back into the contest when Frankie Sinkwich returned a punt 77 yards to the Redskin 22. On the next play, however, George Smith smashed into ball carrier Harry Hopp, forcing a fumble that Baugh recovered.

Sinkwich then rallied his team almost single-handedly. He threw touchdown passes of 22 yards to Jack Matheson and of 40 yards to Bill Callihan. That wasn’t quite enough to make the Redskins sweat, though, so the added a 39-yard interception return for another touchdown and, suddenly, it was 28-20.

The performance by Sinkwich sufficiently aroused the Redskins, and they tallied two more touchdowns in the remainder of the fourth quarter to put it away. The first came on a short run by Andy Farkas, the second on Baugh’s final touchdown pass, his one to Joe Aguirre from four yards.

  1. wtfree3 - Dec 18, 2008 at 5:44 PM

    OK, so if someone returns a punt 77 yards to the Skins 22, that means he fielded it at the 1 yard line! And we thought ARE was bad at times.

    Was that on the punt Baugh boomed 81 yards? Do you have any ideas? If it was, his net was a +4, which you wouldn’t expect on any 77-yard punt return.

  2. Rich Tandler - Dec 19, 2008 at 12:12 PM

    Let me check that, Chip. I’ll pull out the original article and see what it says.

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