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Need to Know: Redskins’ 5 biggest one-year improvements

May 23, 2014, 5:15 AM EDT


Here is what you need to know on this Friday, May 23, four days before the start of OTAs.

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Some are saying that the Redskins have a shot at winning the NFC East title in 2014. If they are going to do that, they likely will have to win nine or more games. That would be the biggest single-season improvement in team history. Here are the top five season-to-season improvements in wins for the Redskins since 1970:

+5, 2011-2012—The Redskins were floundering under Mike Shanahan until a pair of rookies, quarterback Robert Griffin III and running back Alfred Morris, spurred a seven-game winning streak to push the Redskins from five wins in 2011 to 10 wins and the NFC East title.

+4, 2006-2007—It looked like the Redskins were headed to their second straight losing season under Joe Gibbs, especially after the shooting death of star safety Sean Taylor. But they overcame that and an injury to Jason Campbell to roll off four straight wins to finish the season at 9-7. That was up from five wins the year before and it got the Redskins a wild card playoff spot.

+4, 2004-2005—Yes, the Joe Gibbs II era was very up and down. Gibbs’ first year back was a 6-10 disappointment and the second year was shaping up to be the same as the team sat at 5-6. But five straight wins to close out the season got them to a 10-6 finish and a wild card berth.

+4, 1998-1999—The 1998 team was floundering at 2-9 before winning four largely meaningless games in a row to finish at 6-10. Dan Snyder bought the Redskins prior to the 1999 season and his message to Norv Turner was that he could keep his job as long as he made the playoffs. The Redskins did just that, going 10-6 to take the NFC East.

+4, 1990-1991—The 1990 team was pretty good, going 10-6 and winning a playoff game. The 1991 Redskins were one of the best teams of all time. They won their first 11 games, finished 14-2 and steamrolled to the last Super Bowl title.

Note: The Redskins did go from eight wins in 1982 to 14 in 1983, an improvement of +6. However, that ’82 season was shortened to nine games due to a players strike so it’s an uneven comparison.

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—It’s been 145 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be 107 days until they play the Texans in the 2014 season opener.

Days until: OTAs 4; Training camp starts 61; Redskins @ Eagles 121

In case you missed it

Morris talks about being a veteran

  1. shermanp79 - May 23, 2014 at 9:26 AM

    I know this has nothing to do with article but talking about Gibbs and 82 brought it to mind. I was a kid so don’t have full memory of that time. I think Gibbs biggest turnaround was his 0-5 start to finish 8-8 his first year. I wasn’t even a Skins fan then. It was the following year. I lived in Western CT and was a Jets fan LOL but when Miami beat them in Championship[ Game I hated them and rooted for the Skins. I fell in love with Riggins, Theisman Monk and most of all “The Hogs “who were born. When Riggins took that run 40 something yards to the end zone to help Skins win, I was hooked. The following season was great, I didn’t get to see many games but remember a couple of exciting games on Mon night I believe the Packer(even though lost) and Dallas. I was crushed in that SB but that is how I became a fan. I was in my glory when in 87 I was moved to Annapolis, that is when I got to experience being a fan and going to games. I think it would be interesting and fun to have a spot where you have fans tell how they became fans. Maybe a down day before TC. Thanks for all your effort with this Blog, so we have a great space to be fans and share opinions, showing our passion for the Redskins.!! HTTR!!

    • goskins44 - May 23, 2014 at 3:39 PM

      Not a bad idea. I got interested in the late 60’s when Vince Lombardi came to the Skins. But I got hooked when George Allen took over and started all the stuff with dallast. Accusing them of spying on our practices and stirring up the rivalry. It was all theater but I was riveted. Then the 72′ SB run was the cement. I have bled Burgundy and Gold ever since.

      The last 20 yrs it’s been a sick masochistic obsession, but none the less I stay the course. I just can’t imagine rooting for any other team. I have said more than once the only reason there are 31 other teams is so the Redskins have someone to play.

    • kenlinkins - May 23, 2014 at 6:34 PM

      Became a Redskins fan in 1960, Rod Breedlove was my main man (a family friend) and had a number 63 painted on the side of my white helmet. That was the year I got my first “Duke” football,and a white football from Coach Lee Corso (another family friend) signed by the Maryland Players. Rich: I remember a night game from LA (Rams) around 1962 (maybe a preseason game) and Bobby Mitchell making some nice plays. As someone who knows the Redskins history, do you know of a game or preseason game where the Redskins played with a white ball?

    • ea3lat - May 27, 2014 at 1:08 PM

      I was born and raised here in El Paso, Tx. I grew up watching sports and my favorite color as a little kid was red. Therefore I always cheered for teams in red regardless of who they were. If both team uniforms had red in a particular game I would cheer for whomever had more red.

      It just so happened that in 1988 the Super Bowl was on my birthday, as it was every four years (last Sunday of January until 9/11 moved it to the first Sunday of February). I was turning 7 years old on that day and there was a team with red pants playing in the game on television. I cheered for that team, they played great and beat the team in orange 42-10.

      I have seen a 17-2 season, two 3-13 seasons and everything in between. More times than not it has been difficult being a Redskin fan in Texas, but it’s BURGUNDY & GOLD ‘TIL I’M DEAD AND COLD.


  2. mrx149 - May 23, 2014 at 10:35 AM

    How about the other way around. Is 2012-2013 (-7) the biggest drop?

    • goskins44 - May 23, 2014 at 3:49 PM

      You indeed identified the historic worst. Next that I can see are several times we dropped 5 games, the 2 most recent are:

      2005 to 2006 – 10-6 to 5-11

      1991 – 1992 – 14-1 to 9-7 (it should be noted that after winning the SB following the 1991 season we still made the playoffs in 1992 despite the 5 game drop in wins.)

      There were a few times in the 40’s and 50’s where it was 4 games but a higher %, but those are hard to compare as the season was shorter and they added the playoffs to the total season record. So for example in 1942 we went 10-1 and won the championship but then dropped in 1942 to 6-3-1. Well 1942 we only played 10 games vs. 11 in 1941. Not really a fair comparison.

  3. Hack - May 25, 2014 at 8:52 AM

    Tell the players to concentrate on playing & stop making remarks towards rivals. Archives

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