Washington unveiled its new jerseys on Wednesday, returning to a time when Sonny Jurgensen tossed passes to Charley Taylor and Bobby Mitchell. And, lest anyone forget, a time when the Redskins usually lost.
The Redskins will wear their new uniforms for this season only, though owner Daniel Snyder did not rule out making a permanent change after this year.
Washington Redskins' Rod Gardner (87) and Fred Smoot (21) wear the new home-field uniform for the 2002 season during a news conference in Ashburn, Va., Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2002. The Redskins have adopted a new uniform for their 70th anniversary season, shedding the image of a stern Indian face from the side of their helmets. The revamped uniforms, which will only be worn at home games, include burgundy helmets that feature a logo with a spear and feathers, according to the team. (AP Photo/Stephen J. Boitano)
Washington will wear gold pants with burgundy and white stripes and a dark burgundy top. The Redskins' helmets will be dark burgundy with a spear and feather dangling off it.
But they'll only wear the uniforms for home games--it's back to the more recent jerseys on the road. However, Spurrier said the Redskins would wear white tops at home against Dallas, forcing the Cowboys to wear their less-favored dark uniforms.
And Snyder was adamant that this move had nothing to do with any pressure by local civic groups to change the name.
''None whatsoever,'' Snyder said. ''We won't be changing the name for 100-years plus.''
The change is designed to commemorate the franchise's 70th anniversary. It also will boost sales of jerseys--the Redskins lag in the middle of the NFL sales for such items.
The new Washington Redskins helmet for the 2002 season was on display at a news conference at Redskin Park in Ashburn, Va., on Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2002. On the road, the team will continue to wear the traditional white jerseys with burgundy pants, and helmets featuring the team's Indian face logo.(AP Photo/Stephen J. Boitano)
Also, a panel, headed by former CNN anchor Bernard Shaw, will choose what they consider the 70 best Redskins of all-time. The team will be announced before a home game next season.
Others on the panel include: U.S. Sen. George Allen of Virginia; Washington broadcasting legend Ken Beatrice; former stadium announcer Phil Hochberg; Pro Football Hall of Fame historian Joe Horrigan; Redskins Hall of Famer Bobby Mitchell; WTEM Sports Director Andy Pollin; WRC-Tv Sports Director George Michael; Steve Sabol, president of NFL Films and WRC-TV anchor Jim Vance.
''This will be more love than labor,'' Shaw said. ''I am a fanatical Redskins fan.''
But the Redskins have returned to an inglorious past. During the 1960s, the Redskins finished with one winning record, and that occured under Vince Lombardi in 1969 when they went 7-5-2. Otherwise, the decade was marked by offensive prowess and defensive futility.
In 1966, Washington set a franchise record by scoring 72 points in a win over the Giants. Yet the Redskins only finished 7-7 that season as they surrendered 30 or more points in six games.
''This reminds me of the Redskins,'' Jurgensen said, ''especially the helmet. It's good to see that color again.''
. . . Spurrier said he hopes to name a defensive coordinator by the end of February. The only known candidate is New York Jets secondary coach Bill Bradley. But Spurrier has said there are several others, too.
. . . Michael Westbrook said the Redskins have contacted his agent to say he's in their plans. But Westbrook has not yet spoken with Spurrier.