If the Redskins get Miami in a desperate situation here Sunday, they can expect to see the Dolphins use their deflected pass formation left or right.

Since the most recent rules changes permitted a double touch of a pass, some teams have flooded defensive zones with several receivers on the same play, hoping to get lucky on a last-gasp throw, in case it is tipped.

Against the Houston Oilers, the Dolphins lined up three receivers on the extreme left side of the field, in an inverted triangle.

The Philadelphia Eagles used 9 similar formation in the early 1960s, with three receivers lined up on the same side of the field, in single file, facing the opponents's goal line.

Did the Redskins' chickens - rather Cardinals - come home to roost? Washington knocked St. Louis out of the playoffs in 1976 and 1977. Did the Cardinals return the favor Sunday?

Straws in the wind? The Pittsburgh Steelers are 219 against playoff teams since winning the Super Bowl after the 1976 session. They are 3-8-1 against the point spreads this season.

Scratch George Allen as a prognosticator. He picked the Redskins to beat Dallas by 17 to 14.

Pat Summerall and Tom Brookshier can be effective because they do not take themselves too seriously. When Bill Kilmer threw away a wad of chewing gum before replacing Joe Theismann near the end of the first half in Dallas, Summerall remarked, That's his warmup."

Yeah, and it wobbled," Brookshier noted.

Tony Dorsett is back in Tom Landry's good graces. The $250,000-a-year running back would have won a vote for most valuable blocker on Thursday.

Art Rooney of the Steelers, who has seen them all makes a cogent case in suggesting Jack Butler for the Professional Football Hall of Fame. He was a defensive back from 1951 through 1959 and had 52 career interceptions, when there were 12-game seasons.

The NFL Official Encyclopedic History of Professional Football named Butler on its All-Pro team of the 1950s, with Dick (Night Train) Lame, the late Emlen Tunell, Jack Christiansen and Yale Lary.

All but Butler and Lary have been inducted to the Hall of Fame.

High on the list of what Joe Theismann needs for Chritmas.

1. A baseball catcher's chest protector.

2.An offensive line.

3. A quicker release.

4. Fewer running plays when down, 30-3.

Feeling needed at age 31, Cleveland's Calvin Hill says the first time the Browns contacted him he wasn't sure he still wanted to play but after Executive Vice President and General Manager Peter Hadhazy, "called twice more in the next two hours, I said to myself, "Geez, they really want me'

"At this sage of my career I no longer desire to be a star, but I do want to be a contributor. I couldn't fill that role anymore in the Redskins plans, and I couldn't see sticking around as a "wipeup' man."