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Redskins Vs. Bears History, Anecdotes, And Fan Memories


kleese

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As always, this info begins in 1937 when the Redskins moved to DC

--Redskins are 18-16 all time vs. Bears in regular season

--Redskins are 4-3 all time vs. Bears in post season

--First meeting was in Chicago in December of 1937. This was the NFL Championship game. The Redskins won, becoming champs in their first season in DC.

--The Redskins are 11-10 all time at Chicago (including post season)

--The Redskins are 12-9 all time vs. the Bears in Washington (including post season)

--Between 1937-1943, the teams played for the NFL Championship four teams, splitting the meetings. The Redskins won in 1937, but the Bears got revenge in the biggest blowout in NFL post season history, winning 73-0 in 1940

--Each team boasts a six game win streak in the series. The Bears lasted from 1946-1953 and the Redskins matched it from 1989-1999

--Redskins have won 10 of the past 12. Their last loss at home to the Bears was in 2001

--The teams have met consistently since 1937. The longest drought in the series was six seasons stretching from 1958-1963

My Memories:

I've been looking forward to this one because aside from our division rivals, my fondest Redskins memories are quite possibly against the Bears....

1937: Obviously, I don't remember it, but for historical purposes, all Redskins fans should be aware of the 1937 title team. Quite a way to end their first year in the Capital, capping it with a 28-21 victory over Chicago.

1940: Again, this one has historical significance. The Bears waited three years to get their revenge, and did they ever. Can you say 73-0? Wow. Sammy Baugh had a rare terrible game and the Bears picked off our QBs six times, returning three for TDs. As a kid, I remember reading about this in my various football books and feeling kind of embarrassed by it :)

1981: Don't remember it, but this was Joe Gibbs' first win after and 0-5 start to his career. Game was played at Soldier Field and the Redskins won going away, 24-7.

1984: Divisional playoff game at RFK. Our only post season loss at that stadium. The Redskins dominated the 1982 and 1983 seasons. 1984 was a bit more of a struggle as age began to show. But the Redskins still won the East for the third straight year, clinching it in the final week of the season with a dramatic win over the Cardinals. The Bears came in that day and ended our run. They took a 16-3 lead and while we fought back to keep it close, we couldn't get there. Chicago won 23-19 in what remains a fairly bitter pill for the fans that remember it. But we'd get our revenge.

1985: Along with the rest of the NFL, we were invited to the Bears party in 1985. We took a 10-0 lead... The Bears then ended the game on a 45-0 run. Walter Payton threw a TD pass to Jim McMahon, and I believe this was the game where our punter got hurt and Theismann delivered a 7 yard punt in his absence. 1985 was a rough year for the Redskins and Chicago crushed us that day at Soldier Field.

1986: Game was actually played in Jan of 1987, but this was the 86 Divisional round. The 86 team was awesome--- I'd rank them ahead of the 1987 team and right on par with the best Redskins teams I've ever seen. Jay Schroeder was just great in 1986. He was a good athlete and had a huge arm-- he was a perfect for the Gibbs vertical passing attack. I would rank Schroeder in 1986 close to Rypien in 1991 or RG3 in 2012. He was tremendous. Apparently, he was also kind of a jerk and it was questioned how much he cared-- so his career fizzled in the coming years. But in 1986, he was fantastic. The 1985 Bears were one of the greatest teams in NFL history, but people forget that they went 13-3 in 1986 and were primed for another SB. Enter Joe Gibbs. This was part one of his two year schooling of Ditka in the playoffs. This was a classic example of Gibbs' second half adjustments. Down 13-7 at the half, we outscored them 20-0 in the second and put it away late. This was a late afternoon game on Saturday a few days after New Year's-- I watched from our living room in Tulsa and I remember it fondly.

1987: Almost exactly one year later. I was parked in the same spot in our living room. This year the game was early on Sunday. It was bright and sunny in Chicago, but brutally cold.

We fell behind 14-0 and then rallied to tie it. I think all Redskins fans (even those who weren't alive yet) know (or should know) how we broke that tie--- Darrell Green took a punt to the house where he famously hurdled a tackler and strained his rib in the process--- he crossed the goal line clutching his stomach. We then held off a late run and took the game 21-17. Like I said, the 1987 team wasn't as good as 1986, so this win was even more satisfying. Ask anyone why the mid 80's Bears weren't more of a dynasty and the answer is two words: Joe Gibbs. These two games are very special to me and the 1987 game is one I can remember we in very vivid detail. As satisfying a win as the team has ever given me. Should be noted that this was Walter Payton's last game--- will never forget the cameras catching him on the bench at the end, with both hands on his helmet, head down.

1989: Late season, late afternoon game at RFK. We had struggled so far that year, but this game kicked off a strong run to end the year. Rypien torched the Bears that day for 400 yards and 4 TDs. We won 38-14. I remember watching it, and if I'm not crazy, I believe Ditka went on quite a post game rant after this one, completely ripping his team and their effort.

1990: Another late season, late afternoon game at RFK. This was a huge game for us, Bears came in at 10-2 and we really needed a win for our playoff hopes. Didn't look good early-- defensive struggle, Bears held a 9-0 lead into the second half. Rypien had the opposite afternoon that he had had in 1989-- he threw FiVE picks that day--- three to Mark Carrier. Yet, somehow, we found a way, rallied, and won 10-9. I'm not sure on this, but I want to say Daryl Grant caused a Neal Anderson fumble that either set up the winning FG or ended the Bears final drive.

1991: This game was hyped pretty good leading up. Bears were 4-1 and we were 5-0. Many viewed this as a test to see if the Redskins were for real. I remember a lot of people thinking the Bears would win at home. I watched this game from the best sports bar of all time (the old Outback Sports Cafe in Tulsa) and enjoyed a workmanlike 20-7 victory where our defense dominated. This sealed us as the favorite in the NFC and it landed Gary Clark on the cover of SI the following week. This also cemented Gibbs' dominance over Ditka and the Bears in that era.

1996: Early season game, second game of year I believe. I remember it because I was in my dorm room freshmen year of college at OU and I wasn't feeling well-- and I was relieved it was on regular TV because I wasn't sure I'd be able to make it to the bar that day. This game did little to make me feel less ill--- we won 10-3 and I believe Terry Allen had a TD run that was the only TD of the day.

1999: Kind of fun to take a 45-0 lead in a game. Watched from our rent house in Norman with my roommates--- Dan Wilkinson rumbles 88 yards for an INT return TD--- Darrell Green catches him and jogs the last 20 yards or so like a personal escort. Complete domination. Bears did drop 22 points late, but it was window dressing.

2001: Some remember the 0-5 start, others remember the 5-0 follow up. I remember the three home losses that followed and knocked us out of the playoff race. This game was the knockout blow. A very rare occasion for me to miss a game---had a family obligation that I couldn't get out of and had to follow along with updates on the old school dial up. Brain Urlacher caught a TD on a fake field goal to give the Bears a lead and our offense couldn't answer. People applaud Marty for that 8-3 finish, but in my book, he was 6-8 in games that mattered that year--- I've never missed him for a moment.

2005: An ugly affair. Proved just how little faith Gibbs had in Ramsey-- couldn't wait to yank him. Ramsey got bonked on the head and that was that--- lost his job midway through the first game of the year. Our defense won it for us that day, but a thing of beauty it was not.

2007: I had given up, I really had. Just five days earlier we suffered what will always be as painful a loss as I've ever experienced when the Bills beat us on the last play a few days after Sat died. But I sat in front of my TV that Thursday night and came close to praying for a win (I never do that), because I wanted it for Gibbs-- thought he and the team deserved something good for at least one night. So that win came as a great relief to me even if I didn't think it was going to spur us on to something more.

2010: Had a wedding that weekend in Kansas City that I couldn't get out of. Also couldn't convince my wife or in laws to drive back late Sunday (its approx 5 hours) so I could watch at a sports bar. So I had to use the Sunday Ticket app on my phone to try and watch. It was so frustrating because the signal kept going in and out. My wife was already a tad annoyed that I refused to drive so I could watch, and it didn't help that I was grumpy about it and frustrated by the reception. I was able to "sort of" follow along and I did see the Hall INT for a TD that shifted the game. It was frustrating, but it was better because we won.

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I remember watching the 07 game at home. once campbell got injured, i thought it was over. todd collins came back and won us the game :)

 

i also remember the 2010 game. my dad was in chicago to see the game. my mom and i went to NYC to visit my sister at NYU for the weekend. it was the first game i think i've ever missed since being a fan, and i was NOT happy about it. from the thursday night that we got to NYC, to that sunday morning of the game, i had looked at ways to get into a bar for the game while my mom and sister go shopping. my moms friend in NYC even gave us a suggestion of a sports restaurant. but it was too far from our hotel. that sunday, we ended up seeing the Facebook movie near my sisters dorm, and my dad texted me with updates. we got out of the movie by the 4th quarter, and my phone was BLOWING UP with texts from my dad. i was sooo happy and watched the game later that night at home cause i recorded it. ah man, cutler after the game was like "i'll throw it to D Hall every time, thats just the competitor i am". or something to that extent.

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I'm a Redskins fan surrounded by Bears fans, so I'm going to chime in on this thread:

 

1937: Obviously, I don't remember it, but for historical purposes, all Redskins fans should be aware of the 1937 title team. Quite a way to end their first year in the Capital, capping it with a 28-21 victory over Chicago.

1989: Late season, late afternoon game at RFK. We had struggled so far that year, but this game kicked off a strong run to end the year. Rypien torched the Bears that day for 400 yards and 4 TDs. We won 38-14. I remember watching it, and if I'm not crazy, I believe Ditka went on quite a post game rant after this one, completely ripping his team and their effort.

1991: This game was hyped pretty good leading up. Bears were 4-1 and we were 5-0. Many viewed this as a test to see if the Redskins were for real. I remember a lot of people thinking the Bears would win at home. I watched this game from the best sports bar of all time (the old Outback Sports Cafe in Tulsa) and enjoyed a workmanlike 20-7 victory where our defense dominated. This sealed us as the favorite in the NFC and it landed Gary Clark on the cover of SI the following week. This also cemented Gibbs' dominance over Ditka and the Bears in that era.
 

 

1937: Obviously I don't remember this one, but I never fail to bring it up to friends in Chicago.  Why?  Because on that day, the Redskins were able to do something the Chicago Cubs have never done:  Win a championship at Wrigley Field.

 

1989: 4:00 kickoff.  I remember it being a back-and-forth affair until the Redskins scored a touchdown in 3rd quarter and followed it up with an onside kick.  Ditka was visibly angry after that.

 

1991:  This was the only game that season I didn't watch.  Why?  It was my 11th birthday, and it was also the last Orioles' game at the old stadium.  (Somehow my dad got tickets to that). I had to settle for the final score that day.

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I was right, Ditka did go on a tirade after the 1989 game....I can't find any video of it unfortunately, but I remember it and there are web articles referencing it. He said he didn't know if they would win another game...he was right, they didn't.

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As always, great thread.

Like you, I have read whatever historical accounts I can get my hands on. I believe in 41 or 42 we got the last laugh from that 73-0 loss by winning the NFL title 14-6. I think there's a picture of the team posing in front of the score written on a chalk board.

 

I think you're mistaken about that. IIRC we won 2 titles during the Baugh years, 1 of which was vs Chicago, the other against GB. I might be wrong though.

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1990: Another late season, late afternoon game at RFK. This was a huge game for us, Bears came in at 10-2 and we really needed a win for our playoff hopes. Didn't look good early-- defensive struggle, Bears held a 9-0 lead into the second half. Rypien had the opposite afternoon that he had had in 1989-- he threw FiVE picks that day--- three to Mark Carrier. Yet, somehow, we found a way, rallied, and won 10-9. I'm not sure on this, but I want to say Daryl Grant caused a Neal Anderson fumble that either set up the winning FG or ended the Bears final drive.

 

 

 

 

 

 I remember this game. God it was an ugly game, as if both teams had each other's playbooks and knew what would be called.

 After Lohmiller missed the go-ahead FG,  da Bears got the ball. It was the FB Brad Muster who fumbled, setting up another chance by Lohmiller, who didn't miss this time.

 The game where JC had his knee wrapped around his head nearly caused me to vomit; god that was ugly to see! We had knocked their QB out earlier, and it became a battle of back-up QBs. Don't go to Utube and watch it; don't. Unless you like torturing yourself.

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1974: probably my first full season as a Skins fan. For whatever reason remember watching this regular season finale on TV against the Bears, who were dreadful in their pre-Walter Payton days. Blew them out 42-0 at RFK before losing at the Rams in the first round of the playoffs.

 

1978: another season finale, but we lose 14-10 to an improved Bears team.  End to a miserable season which we had started 6-0 under new coach Jack Pardee (who had coached the Bears the three seasons prior), but limped to 8-8.  Billy Kilmer also came into the game, replacing an ineffective Joe Theismann.  I think this was Billy's last game as a Redskin.

 

1984: was down in DC on winter break from college watching this one. As Kleese said, this was a tough loss, arguably the toughest in Gibbs 1.0, as it signified we would not be going back to a third straight Super Bowl. The offense got into Bears territory late, but the Hogs wilted against the Chicago line, and Joey T didn't have a chance.

 

1986:  Still loved the Skins but being away at college in the pre-internet and sports-bar days made it tough to follow them and therefore don't have the fond memories of this season that Kleese has. I did attend my first-ever regular season game at RFK though, where we lost to the Giants. NY was tough that season and I never felt confident about how far we'd go.  Watched us beat the Rams on TV, but just assumed we'd be fodder for the Bears.  I went overseas on a college trip over winter break that year, and at some point someone called home and came back to the group and reported the scores. I was so excited hearing that we had beaten the Bears, but then he says that the Giants beat SF by.....49-3.  Ugh. I got home the night before the NFCCG and was pretty much just happy to be back in the US after being in a bitter cold Europe, and wasn't that devastated by the loss to NY the next day.

 

Do have to say that I lamented for a long time on here about never getting to see that game. A few years a longtime board member (who I haven't seen post in a while) IM'ed me and sent me a copy of a game in the mail.  I hope you're still around and doing well my friend, and you're part of what has made ES a great community!

 

2007: I've been to 90 pct of the games at FedEx since the place opened.  This was by far the coldest one I went to, although I didn't have the (dis) pleasure of attending either of Zorn's final two home games in '09.

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There's a guy in my office who's a Bears fan. Great guy, too. One day he was talking with my project leader about how great the 85 Bears were and mused "I don't know what happened to that team, they should've won more." I couldn't help but interject "Joe Gibbs happened. We knocked you out the next two years in a row."

I can't remember if it was 84 (or maybe 85), but we had a bunch of injured players out for the game and noone thought we had much of a chance going in.

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1987: I think all Redskins fans (even those who weren't alive yet) know (or should know) how we broke that tie--- Darrell Green took a punt to the house where he famously hurdled a tackler and strained his rib in the process--- he crossed the goal line clutching his stomach.

I will never forget that play. I can see it now. It was so cold you could see everyone's breath. Green was so fast that even after injuring himself he ran right by players to the endzone. Classic.

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I'll be giving my tickets to my boss this weekend (Bears fan) because I have a wedding to attend.  I still can't figure out how to get a radio feed for the game because it'll be in NJ and I have a dumb phone still... So I feel you on this one, Ed.

 

Anyways...

I remember the 1991 game, too.  My dad recorded it on VHS (as he did every game) but this was the first time I actually noticed what he was doing.  I thought it was the coolest thing.  I watched that tape probably 4 or 5 times over the next week. :)

 

I don't remember the Bears game during the Marty year, because I had a shooting competition and my dad wouldn't let me record it since I told him I'd rather watch the Redskins... so I still have never seen that one.

 

Fast forward to 2007... I had been back from my first trip to Iraq for about a month, by this time.  I was dating my soon to be wife, and like a champ, the week before she woke up and went to a sports bar with me at 8am Alaska time so that we could catch the 9am (1pm EST) kickoff for the Bills game.  So this one made it a lot easier for me since it was Thursday Night.  We had a really cool group of Redskins fans at this sports bar, I never knew anyones name, we all just sat in the same spot and commented on the games.  When Campbell went down, I remember feeling sick to my stomach.  But then all of a sudden the offense looked different when Todd Collins came in.  Who knew ;) ?  That was just an all around fun night and cool time with my wife.  The first time the Redskins won since we started dating --- so in other words --- I didn't have to get rid of her :)

 

I was not impressed at all with the 2010 game because other than DeAngelo Hall... we sucked.  Even though we were 4-3 after that game and going in to what looked to be a favorable part of our schedule, you couldn't convince me that we'd amount to much.  We should have rolled that team after a 4 interception game.  17-14 was unsat.

 

Here's to hoping we can turn the season around with this one, much like 2007!

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 STILL one of my all-time favorite quotes came in the 87 paloff game vs da Bears.

 

 Madden and Summerall were talking about the bitter cold weather during that game, and Summerall asked Madden about playing in those conditions.

 

Madden says;  " yea, when you play in cold games like this, your sweat freezes, your spit freezes; hec, ANYTHING hangin' on ya will freeze".

 

 Summerall choked as he laughed while trying to call the down.

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 STILL one of my all-time favorite quotes came in the 87 paloff game vs da Bears.

 

 Madden and Summerall were talking about the bitter cold weather during that game, and Summerall asked Madden about playing in those conditions.

 

Madden says;  " yea, when you play in cold games like this, your sweat freezes, your spit freezes; hec, ANYTHING hangin' on ya will freeze".

 

 Summerall choked as he laughed while trying to call the down.

 

One of the games around that time (either 86 or 87) was preceded by Mike Ditka being quoted as saying that Dexter Manley had a brain the size of a grapefruit or something. I remember being an elementary school kid and being so pissed off about that. Looking back, he might have been trying to pay the man a compliment.

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One of the games around that time (either 86 or 87) was preceded by Mike Ditka being quoted as saying that Dexter Manley had a brain the size of a grapefruit or something. I remember being an elementary school kid and being so pissed off about that. Looking back, he might have been trying to pay the man a compliment.

 

 Didn't Dex say something to the effect of 'I'm gonna ring his clock' ?  Not sure who he was referring to, but ringing a clock would be a pretty good trick.

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As a kid, I learned that Madden feared flying and crossed the country in his cruiser. During the season, around midweek, I would often go to the front entrance of our neighborhood and play football...by myself...often in the mud. My thought process was that if Madden happened to drive by, that he'd see me and surely stop. Growing up as Redskins/NFL fan in the 80's was glorious.

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Actually 1 game I remember that wasnt listed was the 1997 game. We crushed them 31-8 in Chicago. The one thing I remember from that game was Chris Zorich returning to Chicago after we signed him mid week. Rumor has it he told us everything about the Bears that week and we jumped on them 31-0 in the 3rd quarter

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1971 - Bears score on Extra point gone bad, with Dick Butkus catching a desperation heave for 1 point (no 2 point conversion back then).  Skins lose 16-15 after Curt (off to the right) Knight misses a game winner at the end of the game after making 5 during the game.

 

http://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/197111140chi.htm

 

 

1981 - Gibbs first win.  Dave Butz nearly had a pick 6.

 

1984 playoffs - Skins only loss at RFK in the playoffs.  I did not see ANY of this game as I was driving to GA to watch UVA play Purdue (QB was Jim Everrett) in the Peach Bowl.  We did hear some of the game on the radio, but since we were driving, we kept losing stations and having to hunt for new ones.

 

1986 playoffs - Skins upset Bears at Soldiers Field.  My girlfriend's father could not see the game and tried to tape it.  His daughters messed with the VCR and he got nothing.  He did get to see the postgame show and Gibbs had the BIGGEST smile on his face that I think had ever seen from him.  I felt really bad for the father as they just gushed over the Redskins in the postgame show and you could see it in Gibbs face just how well they had done.

 

2000 - Brian Urlacher scores on a fake FG.  Damn LBs....Felt like 1971 all over again, but this was a designed play.

http://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/197111140chi.htm

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You know, usually, I read this and smile along. Many of you may not know my fan journey, but I became a Redskins fan in high school after being a child hood Packers fan (born in Wisconsin, raised in DC, I found I never liked the Packers as much as I just liked Favre and felt I was "supposed" to like the Packers).

 

The 05 game was my first Redskins game ever. Not just my first game in attendance, but my first Redskins game as a Redskins fan. My brother, who had long ago converted to Redskins fandom after our move, bought tickets and my parents paid for my half. I went along thinking "I'm not sure if I like the Skins, but I like football". I didn't care that it was an ugly, UGLY 9-7 win. I will never forget it because the bears were in field goal range to take the lead in the 4th quarter and we got so loud that we caused 3 consectuve false starts. THREE! I was 16 years old and "I" had propelled the team to victory. It was amazing lol.

 

That 07 game. I had given up my ticket to the Buffalo game. I didn't have the strength to go. I felt weak, knowing that the players were being strong and showing up, but I didn't have it in me. That bears game, I remember it was bitter, bitter cold. And it rained something awful (or else I was just plain cold). My brother and I actually snuck down and slipped into the club level at half time and watched on the TVs while we tried to get warm on a couch. We were both too cold to even notice we won. The whole thing was just a dulling of emotion.

 

That 2010 game. I was watching a bootleg stream from the back room of the Tuxedo Store I was managing. People kept coming in to get measured and I kept telling them I was busy doing an alteration. I remember thinking the stream was broken as I watched Hall get pick after pick. And only because I feel he really deserves the mention, but Haynesworthless made a remarkable play on the goal line to keep the bears out of the end zone and (I think) force a fumble. On that play I thought he was super human.

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The 2010 game was like a silent film comedy skit. Must've been like 7-8 turnovers in that game combined. Rak dominated the Bears o-line, and D Hall had magnetized gloves. 4 int's and housed one from 90+ yards out. That on egame got Hall a Pro Bowl invite, as he had like 1-2 int' the rest of the season.

 

I was proud of the way the team played in '07 on a short week (Thursday Night Football) after the 2 timeout cluster**** against the Bills. Hester was bottled up in that game, and Todd Collins came in and helped us get the W.

 

'05 looked to be the beginning of another disastrous season as we did nothing on offense, and Portis (who looked to be at least 15 pounds heavier, resulting in less speed) was caught from behind when he broke past the second level and got into the open field.

 

All I remember from '04 was a spectacular int by Sean Tayor, when he almost leaped over a WR to snag it, then made a good return into Bears territory. Pretty sure it changed that entire game.

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