Tag Archives: super bowl

Dec. 8, 1940 – Bears beat the Redskins, 73-0, in the 8th NFL Championship Game

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The game was played at Griffith Stadium in Washington, D.C., and broadcasted on radio by Mutual Broadcasting System, the first NFL title game broadcast nationwide. The Chicago Bears defeated the Washington Redskins, 73–0, the most one-sided victory in NFL history.

The Redskins had beat the Bears 7–3 in a regular season game three weeks earlier. After the contest, Redskins owner George Preston Marshall told reporters that the Bears were “quitters” and “cry babies” when the going got tough. As the Bears prepared for the rematch, Chicago head coach George Halas fired up his team by showing them newspaper articles of Marshall’s comments.

Less than a minute into the game, the Bears’ running back Bill Osmanski ran 68 yards to score the first touchdown. After the Redskins narrowly missed an opportunity to tie the game, the Bears clamped down and began to dominate, leaving the field at halftime with a 28-0 lead. Things only got worse for the Redskins, and by the end of the second half officials were asking Halas not to let his team kick for extra points, as they were running out of footballs after too many had been kicked into the stands.

The Bears followed their history-making win with two more consecutive championships, including a game against the New York Giants just two weeks after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor. Many great football players were subsequently drafted into World War II, and Halas himself would leave in 1942 for a tour of duty in the Pacific. In 1946, after the war ended, Halas and a number of former players returned to the team, and the Bears won their fourth NFL Championship in seven years.

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Dec. 3, 1988 – Barry Sanders won the Heisman Trophy

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In 1988, in what has been called the greatest individual season in college football history (via ESPN), Barry Sanders led the nation by averaging 7.6 yards per carry and over 200 yards per game, including rushing for over 300 yards in four games. Despite his massive workload of 344 carries, Sanders was still used as the team’s punt and kickoff returner, adding another 516 yards on special teams.

He set college football season records with 2,628 yards rushing, 3,248 total yards, 234 points, 39 touchdowns, 37 rushing touchdowns, 5 consecutive 200 yard games, scored at least 2 touchdowns in 11 consecutive games, and 9 times he scored at least 3 touchdowns. Sanders also ran for 222 yards and scored 5 touchdowns in his three quarters of action in the Holiday Bowl – a game that was not included with his season statistics. Sanders won the Heisman Trophy as the season’s most outstanding player. He then chose to leave Oklahoma State before his senior season to enter the NFL draft.

Nov. 29, 1987 – Joe Montana began a streak of NFL record 22 consecutive passes

In 1987, Joe Montana of the San Francisco 49ers had 31 touchdown passes, a career high, in just 13 games. He also set an NFL record by completing twenty-two consecutive passes, passed for 3,054 yards, and had a passer rating of 102.1. Though the 49ers finished with the best record in the NFL, they lost in the NFC semi-finals to the Minnesota Vikings. A true student of the game, Montana won the NFL’s passing title in both 1987 and 1989.

Prior to the 1987 season, Bill Walsh completed a trade for Steve Young, then a quarterback with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Young went on to appear in eight regular season games for the team and finished the year with a passer rating of 120.8.

Nov. 20, 1977 – Walter Payton ran for a then NFL-record 275 yards

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In the first half alone, Walter Payton carried the ball 26 times for 144 yards and scored one touchdown. The Chicago Bears built a 10-0 halftime lead and hung on for a 10-7 victory over their NFC Central Division rivals. But, that wasn’t the story on this day. A Soldier Field crowd of 57,359 could feel that history was being made. With just a bit more than three minutes to play in the game, Payton broke loose for a 58-yard run to the Minnesota Vikings‘ 9-yard line. Not only did he put the Bears in scoring position but also put him within five yards of O. J. Simpson‘s single-game rushing record of 273 yards. Payton carried the ball two more times and gained seven yards to claim the record.

In that record-setting game, Payton was suffering with a 101-degree fever and intense flu. His longest run was for 58 yards, and he caught one pass for 6 yards. His record stood for 23 years until Corey Dillon of the Cincinnati Bengals ran for 278 yards in 2000.

Payton was once asked what defenses could do to stop him. His response: “The night before the game, I guess they’d have to kidnap me.”

SOME OF PAYTON’S NUMEROUS NFL RECORDS:

  • Most Yards Gained, Career – 16,726
  • Most Seasons, 1000 or More Yards Rushing (tied) – 10
  • Most Games, 100 or More Yards Rushing, Career – 77
  • Most Rushing Attempts, Career – 3,838
  • Most Combined Yards Gained, Career – 21,803
  • Most Combined Yards Attempts, Career – 4,368

via profootballhof.com