Jump to content
Washington Football Team Logo

Redskins Introduce QB Joe Theismann


Recommended Posts

Is it Jack Pardee?

No - Pardee just retired as a player the year before. - He would have been much younger at that time - 1974 - which was also the year JKC bought the team.

The person in the picture must have been the GM or President at the time.

It's not Edward Bennet Williams either.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it may be John Bassett, Sr.

I think this is an introduction for the Toronto Argonauts and not the Redskins.

The following text appears next to the above photo if you do a search on the photo's origins.

excerpt from "THEISMANN" by Joe Theismann with Dave Kindred, 1987 Contemporary publishing:


In any case my visions of the Heisman Trophy making me rich as a first round pick in the NFL were gone like air out of a football. I was left to choose between going to the NFL as a fourth-rounder, or accepting an offer from the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. Before the NFL draft the Argonauts offered me $50,000 to sign and $50,000 a year for three seasons. Miami first offer was $17,000 a year. I about died. Then Joe Robbie got into the negotiations. Mr. Robbie asked "What do you want?". "Thirty-five, 45, and 55, and a $35,000 signing bonus broken down over 3 years." Mr.Robbie said "Fine." I went on Miami television to sat "Come hell or high water, I'll be a Miami Dolphin."

What I didn't count on, though, was a rider to the contract written up by Mr.Robbie. The rider said I had to repay all of the signing bonus if I ever failed to make the 40-man roster, even in the second or third year of the contract. That wasn't part of any deal I'd agreed to. We argued for weeks, until the Dolphins finally relented, saying, "OK the bonus in unrelated to your making the team and you don't have to pay it back."

But by then i was so disillusioned with the Dolphins and the negotiating process that I had asked the Argonauts if their offer still stood. The money wasn't much more than Miami's offer, but yes, it still stood and it hadn't changed. Toronto dealt straight with me and I felt Miami didn't.

So I flew to Toronto and, probably to keep me from changing my mind again, Toronto owner, John Bassett, Sr., wouldn't let me leave without signing the contract. He said. "If you leave the offer is off the table." I signed and asked him to not announce it until I had had a chance to call Don Shula and the Dolphins.

Well Mr.Bassett owned a newspaper in Toronto as well as some radio stations. He wasn't going to sit on a scoop. It was in the paper and on the air the next morning, as I learned when the phone rang. It was Ara Parseghian saying, "Joe, what have you done? Don Shula is on the line and he is mad as can be. He says you have a moral obligation to the Dolphins. What are you doing?"

"The Dolphins took a hard line wouldn't budge, and I grew tired of it."

At Notre Dame, you come out of the dark tunnel and you saw 60,000 faces. At Toronto, the first thing you saw was a ferris wheel because the stadium was on the Canadian National Exhibition Fairgrounds. The Canadian Football League was a classy operation, and my three years were fun.

Somehow, the Toronto Argonauts were pretty good. Our coach, Leo Cahill, was and still is, the No.1 football personality in Canada, a colourful performer who was fired and rehired by the Argonauts so often his autobiography is entitled Goodbye, Leo. What a team - we had two Ph.D.s. Paul Desjardins. my center, was a biochemist, my wide receiver Mike Eben, was an expert in Germanic languages. We also had some American football players, such as Jimmy Stillwagon and Granville Liggens. We even had a running back called "X-Ray" because most of the time he was invisible. He ran so fast no one could catch him.

That first year we played Calgary in the Grey Cup, the CFL's version of the Super Bowl. With four minutes to play our defensive back Dick Thornton, who'd been a quarterback at Northwestern, intercepted a pass and took it back to the six-yard line. Dicky figured he'd won the car that went to the MVP. Next play, I threw an incompletion. Second play, we ran a sweep with X-ray - and he fumbled. We lost the ball and the game. I was content with my situation; conditions were good in the CFL, and it was good enough football that a coach by the name of Bud Grant came out of there and succeeded in the NFL.

The second year in Canada I broke my leg in the season opener. Running out of bounds, I pivoted on the artificial turf to take one more peek up the field. Right then somebody jumped on my back, and my foot stuck to the turf. With me sidelined for most of '72 the Argos won one game and Leo was fired. our new coach was John Rauch, who had been let go by the Oakland Raiders in '68. By then I also was in a contract dispute with the Argonauts general manager, John Barrow, who had been a Canadian All-Star lineman in his playing days. When he offered $75,000 to sign again, I said "That's not enough the NFL will pay me that. You have to give me a reason to stay here." Barrow was angry. "You're just a typical kid who got too much too soon." To which I replied "And you're just a washed up lineman who didn't get anything and is envious about it." All I wanted was out, It had been fun but I wanted Joe Namath's league. Coming so close to the Grey Cup made me hungry to win a Super Bowl.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



An excerpt:

Argonaut owner John Bassett opened his check- book for 1971 and Leo went to work improving his already strong team. He signed Detroit Lion quarterback Greg Barton and Notre Dame Star, Joe Theismann. Theismann was a high draft pick of the Miami Dolphins who were stunned when they lost him to Toronto.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...