As part of their annual homecoming celebration, the Redskins welcomed back more than 150 former players, and at halftime introduced the 10 players that were added to their new list of the 80 Greatest Redskins.
The 10 players’ names were announced at the team’s Welcome Home Luncheon just before the start of the season, but Sunday represented the formal addition to the list.
The honorees included linebacker LaVar Arrington, general manager Bobby Beathard, assistant coach Joe Bugel, offensive linemen Terry Hermeling, Chris Samuels and Jon Jansen, receiver Roy Jefferson, assistant coach Richie Petitbon, running back Clinton Portis and the late safety Sean Taylor.
Samuels was not in attendance, and members of Taylor’s family represented him.
“It’s a tremendous honor,” said Jansen, who played for Washington from 1999 to 2008. “As an offensive lineman, you don’t get a lot of honors, or get noticed for a lot of things. But for the fans and the guys on the 70 vote for you, and to be mentioned along with those guys, it’s tremendous. … It is [surreal]. I still feel the same way: ‘How did I get here? How am I a part of this group?’ And you get all the flashbacks to all the hard work that you put in, and then meeting these guys, and seeing guys you played with, it’s just a lot of fun.”
Portis, who officially retired in August and is the franchise’s second-leading rusher, like Jansen was in awe of the situation. Prior to the game, he and the other former players all gathered for pictures on the field, and all sported burgundy blazers with a gold script ‘R’ embroidered on the left breast pocket.
“You really can’t come up with words to help people understand how priceless, or how special this moment is,” Portis said. “This is stuff you never think about. People think about the Super Bowl rings, and want to be an All-Pro and all the accolades. But when you sit back and analyze it for real, it’s is a part that you always forget. But when you’re involved in an alumni like this and so much history, it’s awesome.
“It’s like, man, this happened so quick for me,” Portis continued. “I retired in August, a couple days later, I was voted into the 80 greatest, and now to be out here with guys like Otis Wonsley, and allo these guys who mean so much – the Hogs, the coaches, the Art Monks, the Darrell Greens. You don’t ever think. You think of the Redskins, you think Art Monk, Darrell Green, Joe Theismann, Riggo. And to say, ‘Oh, I remember watching Mark Rypien as a quarterback,’ and all of a sudden, I’m sharing the field with them.”