Redskins

Quick Links

The Big Twenty: Joe Gibbs returns as coach

The Big Twenty: Joe Gibbs returns as coach

NBC Sports Washington is rolling out the 20 biggest stories in DMV sports in the past 20 years. Here is No. 5.

The world of entertainment today is littered with too many sequels, most of which feel unnecessary. But back in 2004, the Washington area's dream sequel became reality.

Joe Gibbs 2.0.

Coming off of a disastrous Steve Spurrier-led 5-11 season in 2003, Dan Snyder knew the Redskins needed a serious reboot. So, he made a push for the franchise's most revered figure, a man that would immediately rejuvenate an organization and a region and send shock waves throughout the entire sport.

After retiring in 1993, Gibbs was approached multiple times by owners who had hoped they could convince him to return to the NFL. However, the legend was content spending his time in NASCAR and bonding with the family he had missed so much during his first go-round with Washington.

After all, what more was there for him to do?

Eventually, though, the desire to coach again became too much to ignore — as it tends to do with football lifers like Gibbs — right at a time the team he had captured three Super Bowls with needed an established leader. Snyder made his pitch and, finally, got his guy.

Organization rejuvenated. Region rejuvenated. Shock waves sent.

A Hall of Famer was coming home.

"Joe Gibbs helped define what the Washington Redskins stand for," Snyder said when the move was announced.

"I couldn't coach anywhere but Washington," Gibbs said when he was reintroduced. 

These days, the Redskins are too fond of reaching into the past when they should be focusing on the present and future, which is an illness that Ron Rivera is surely hoping to fix. But in the mid-2000s, Gibbs coming back generated a massive wave of excitement and immediately re-established a level of legitimacy the whole operation badly needed.

Of course, in his four years in charge again, Gibbs didn't add to his collection of Lombardi Trophies or lead any parades as he did during his untouchable first reign. Yet it's worth pointing out he made the playoffs twice from 2004 to 2007, with each run culminating in a clutch December winning streak, which is a level of success that really hasn't been matched by any other coach in the 2000s.

Still, Gibbs' return easily belongs on the list of top 20 moments in this area's recent history. Why?

Because when he came back, he brought hope with him. And that's something that hasn't exactly been bountiful with the Redskins this millennium.  

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

MORE BIG TWENTY

Quick Links

Charley Casserly learned a lot from the late Bobby Mitchell

Charley Casserly learned a lot from the late Bobby Mitchell

As the Washington Redskins family continues to mourn the passing of the legendary Bobby Mitchell, former GM Charley Casserly weighed in on how much he took away from knowing Mitchell.

“Bobby Mitchell was a dear friend and mentor to me during my time with the Washington Redskins,” Casserly begins. “He took me under his wing. He taught me scouting.”

Casserly first met Mitchell when the former was just an intern getting his start in the business. Rather than push him aside, Mitchell imparted upon Casserly the importance of attitude and demeanor.

“He taught me how to be a professional in the workplace,” the former GM continued. “He cared about people in the community. That’s what, to me, separated him from many other people.”

Mitchell’s longest-lasting impact is his role as one of the first players of color to integrate the Redskins back in 1962, but his role as a mentor and friend to so many in the Washington area lives on as well.

As Casserly says, Mitchell is sorely missed already.

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS

Quick Links

Brian Mitchell was 'truly impressed' by Redskins legend Bobby Mitchell: Great football player, better human being

Brian Mitchell was 'truly impressed' by Redskins legend Bobby Mitchell: Great football player, better human being

Hall of Famer Bobby Mitchell died on Sunday at the age of 84, according to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Mitchell, who became the first black player on the Redskins when he was traded to Washington in 1962, had a significant impact on another former Redskin, Brian Mitchell, both on and off the field. 

“He was a great football player but I think 25,000 times more of a human being,” said Brian, who was drafted by the Redskins in 1990. 

As Brian grew closer with the Hall of Famer, he was especially impressed by his efforts to fight for equality in the African American community.

“I knew that he was the first African American to come to D.C. and play, but then when I began to find out more about him he was the guy that was out there fighting, a social activist, doing things to help out our black community, which truly truly impressed me,” Brian expressed.

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE REDSKINS TALK PODCAST

Brian took great pride in not only knowing the Hall of Famer but having the same last name. 

“I remember someone asking if I was a relative and he said 'no.' And then he told me, he said ‘every time you ran another touchdown, I was like he’s a cousin. Oh, that’s my boy, that’s my son,” Brian said. 

To this day Brian strives to be as influential as Bobby was.

“This one man who did so much had so much impact on so many people throughout this community, it said a lot to me. He’s going to be sorely missed. We love you Bobby, take care,” Brian said.

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS: