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Need to Know: Which classic Redskins games do you want to see again?

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Need to Know: Which classic Redskins games do you want to see again?

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, May 22, two days before the Washington Redskins start OTAs.

Timeline

—The Redskins last played a game 133 days ago. It will be 113 days until they host the Steelers in their 2016 season opener.

Days until: OTAs start 2; Redskins training camp starts 67; Preseason opener @ Falcons 81

Redskins classics

The NFL has announced that it will be greatly expanding its YouTube offerings later this year and include old games from start to finish. Initially they will publish three historical games from each team. Which three would you like them to post for the Redskins? Here are my suggestions—one Super Bowl, one playoff game and one regular season game.

Feel free to leave your suggestions in the comment section.

Regular seasonRedskins 29, Cardinals 27 12/16/1984: This is the forgotten classic of the 1980’s. The Redskins needed to win to take the NFC East title. For the Cardinals it was win and in, lose and go home. Oh, and Art Monk was on target to break the NFL record for receptions in a single season. The Cardinals rallied from a 23-7 halftime deficit to take a 27-26 lead. Joe Theismann led a masterful drive, with key passes going to his record-breaking wide receiver, to a Mark Moseley field goal to send the Redskins to the playoffs.

A popular choice for some might be the 2005 Monday Night Miracle in Dallas, with Mark Brunell throwing two long TDs to Santana Moss in the late going to win it. But do you really want to sit through the ugly first 55 minutes of that to get to the good part?

PlayoffsRedskins 21, Bears 17 1987 season divisional playoff: Although everyone remembers Darrell Green’s 52-yard punt return that put the Redskins ahead to stay in the third quarter, there was more to this game than that. The home team jumped to a 14-0 lead in the second quarter and it looked like the rout was on. Then after the Redskins rallied the defense had to make the lead stand up. This game was well played by the Redskins with tension throughout, another forgotten classic.

But, hey, if you want to go with the 1982 season NFC title game against the Cowboys I’m not going to argue. That game was fun, loud, and the call by Summerall and Madden was outstanding.

Super BowlXVII vs. Dolphins: Again, there is one big play here that is ingrained in everyone’s mind, the Riggins 43-yard touchdown run on fourth and one in the fourth quarter. But the game leading up to that moment is a story of the Redskins overcoming adversity after allowing some big plays. Joe Gibbs stuck with his game plan of pounding the ball to Riggins but he was only able to do so because of some clutch plays by the defense and on huge defensive play by the quarterback.

Super Bowl XXII featured The Quarter, 35 points produced masterfully by Doug Williams, Timmy Smith, Ricky Sanders, and company. But the second half of that game boring. Stick with the NFL Films 30-minute highlight treatment of that game. And Super Bowl XXVI was a superb crowning achievement by one of the best teams ever but it was over on the first play from scrimmage of the second half.

In case you missed it 

 

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In talking 2018 NFL draft, Doug Williams actually explained Redskins' free agency

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USA TODAY Sports

In talking 2018 NFL draft, Doug Williams actually explained Redskins' free agency

The Redskins spent modestly in 2018 free agency, and plenty of fans thought the team should have shelled out much bigger bucks. Talking with sources around the Ashburn facility, a prevaling notion became clear that the Washington brass believed they had a strong team in 2017, but they lost their chance to compete because of injuries. 

Well, the secret is out. Doug Williams said as much on Tuesday. 

"Coming out of Richmond last year, I liked this football team. I think we’ve got a tough football team, a smart football team. Some things you can’t control," Williams said Tuesday in a pre-draft media session. "We were very competitive up to a certain point, and when you have the injuries that we have, at a certain point, that competitive edge, you lose it because your best players are not playing."

Williams' words were true, and telling. 

First the true part:

  • In Washington's first five games of 2017, the team went 3-2. The Redskins only lost to eventual the Super Bowl champs Philadelphia and AFC West champs Kansas City. Washington only gave up more than 100 yards rushing once in those first five games, before rookie Jonathan Allen got hurt and the defense began to look much different. After Week 5, the Redskins only held one team under 100 yards rushing and finished the year dead last in rush defense.

Now the telling part:

  • The Redskins signed free agent WR Paul Richardson, and kept free agent LB Zach Brown. Beyond that, the team added inexpensive veterans in OLB Pernell McPhee and CB Orlando Scandrick. No splash moves, and recurring speculation that Washington was not offering top dollar to free agents. Bruce Allen acknowledged as much during NFL League Meetings when he explained that his team identified exactly how much they would offer free agents, their own and otherwise, and wouldn't go beyond that dollar figure. 

That means the focus of the offseason, at this point, is about this weekend's NFL Draft.

That also means the focus of the offseason, at this point, is not about Johnathan Hankins or any other free agent. 

"We’re going to deal with the draft now, and the second wave of free agents, if it’s somebody out there we feel like can help the Redskins,that’s what we’re going to do," Williams said. 

Throughout the offseason, Redskins fans wanted more action from their front office. It didn't happen, and Williams' basically explained why on Tuesday. The brass likes their team, and by default, expects better health and luck in 2018. 

When Williams talks about drafting the best player available, it's not just the typical NFL front office tripe. Right or wrong, the Redskins believe they have a team ready to compete in 2018, and any rookies that come in will only supplement that position.

"At the end of the day, I like this football team we’ve got. Like, last year when I walked out of camp, I thought we had a pretty good football team and I still feel the same way today," Williams said.

"At the end of the day, you get the best football player, and if that best football player is the guy that you want to plug and play, that’s all right. But if that’s the best football player that’s going to help your team overall, I think that’s the route you have to go."

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Doug Williams says Redskins will listen to draft trade offers but a trade up is unlikely

Doug Williams says Redskins will listen to draft trade offers but a trade up is unlikely

The Redskins aren’t in the quarterback business, so it’s highly unlikely that they will look to trade up in the first round of the draft on Thursday. But their phones will be open for business to move down. 

Speaking at the team’s pre-draft press conference, Doug Williams didn’t rule out trading up from the team’s first-round spot at 13thoverall but he doesn’t think it’s likely. 

“The chances of trading up might be a little slimmer than trading down,” he said. 

Williams said that the phones in the room will be ringing and that they will listen to any offers. But usually the team that wants to move up initiates the call and because the Redskins are set at one particular position they probably won’t pick up the phone. 

“If we were in the quarterback business, which is what this league is about, if we were in the heavy quarterback business we’d talk about moving up,” he said. “At this time, we can sit back and see what comes up if we stay at 13.”

The Redskins are set at quarterback after they traded their third-round pick and cornerback Kendall Fuller for veteran Alex Smith to replace the departed Kirk Cousins. Williams thinks that the Redskins already got good value from the pick. 

“When I think about Alex Smith, I say we got the best third-round pick in the draft,” he said. “I don't care what nobody says. You can't get a better third-round pick.”

Because they think they got a good player, albeit an older one, with that pick, the Redskins are not necessarily looking to make a deal to move back and recoup that pick on draft day. 

Williams emphasized that in order to move back, you have to have a team that wants to trade up. Often that is easier said than done. 

“They don’t just call you to ask you, they have to get a player that they want,” said Williams. “At that particular time, they’re afraid that somebody else might pick him. They might call you to ask you if you want to move back . . . If we move back, that’s because somebody called us to see if we want to move back.”

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Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.