Greatest Player: Sammy Baugh
Sammy Baugh lead the Washington pro franchise to two NFL Championships in 1937 and 1942. In an era when the run game was dominant, Baugh was a pass-first machine, like an old-school Tom Brady or Drew Brees, leading the NFL in completion percentage eight times and four times in passing yardage, including his first season (’37) when he was technically a tailback!
Baugh was truly one of those players who pioneered and helped transform the game from one-dimensional ground attacks to exciting aerial displays of passing prowess.
Runner Up: John Riggins
Arguably the team’s most beloved player among the fan base of the Washington Redskins, John Riggins was the workhorse running back for Hall of Fame head coach Joe Gibbs and the Redskins teams that would go to the Super Bowl in both 1982 and 1983. During the 1982-1983 postseason, Riggins demanded that Gibbs put the offense on Riggins back, and Gibbs obliged; Riggins carried the ball 136 times in 4 playoff games, including 38 carries for a Super Bowl record 166 yards and a touchdown in Super Bowl XVII.
Riggins was named the MVP of said Super Bowl. The following season, Riggins would go on to set the NFL record for most rushing touchdowns in a season, running for 24 touchdowns on a Redskins offense that would set the record for the most points scored by an offense in a single season. To this day, Riggins’ 11,352 rushing yards keeps him among the top 20 running backs of all time (in rushing yards).