Wayne Sevier, coach of the Washington Redskins' special teams, came into the locker room wearing a bag over his head.
Sevier, at least for one day, would have liked to be the "Unknown Coach" after the Redskins had one punt blocked, one partially blocked, barely got a third one away and failed to get off a fourth because of a heavy rush -- all in the second half of their 28-14 victory over Detroit.
The Lions' second touchdown, a 19-yard pass from Gary Danielson to Rob Rubick, came as a result of Jeff Hayes' 37-yard punt, which was almost blocked. Detroit took possession at the Washington 40 after a five-yard return by Alvin Hall.
"We worked as hard as we could in practice this week because we knew we would get a lot of different looks. We always do when we play Detroit," said Sevier. "We worked on the 4-6 (rushing alignment). After the third one (which was partially blocked by Roosevelt Barnes), everyone came off the field saying, 'I got my block. I got my block.' But I know someone didn't get their block because one of their players got a hand on it."
William Frizzell blocked Hayes' first punt of the second half, coming from the outside left. He was lined up close to another Lion, who occupied the nearest Washington blocker, allowing Frizzell to slip in. Barnes was in a similar alignment coming from the right side on his block, but no Redskins seemed certain who the blocker was.
With about six minutes remaining, the Lions came through the middle and Hayes fumbled, with Kirk Dodge of the Lions recovering at the Redskins' 22. Detroit, however, failed to score on the possession.
"Everything went well in the first half, but don't even ask me what happened in the second half," said Hayes. "I tried to get the punts off as quickly as possible, and I thought I was doing my job, but all I know is that they were all over me."
The Detroit special teams coach, Joe Madden, designed the rushing maneuvers after studying films. He felt the Redskins would be vulnerable on punt protection because he said they seemed so concerned with getting downfield to cover punts.
Trey Junkin, who made good long snaps on all the punts, said the Lions stacked seven men in one area.
"We've seen five or six stacked before, but never seven," said Junkin. "We tried different blocking schemes, but that didn't work. I know we can get the job done, but I have no idea what went wrong today."
Sevier said the Lions were growing more confident with each punt. "They were fired up, we were getting a little tentative and they had nothing to lose," said Sevier. "But I tell you one thing, if we had to punt one more time, we would have gotten it off."
Hayes said he expects other teams to study films of the game and use similar tactics to come after him.
"They (the Lions) did some things that were evidently working," said Hayes, who has had only two previous punts blocked in three years as a Redskin. "Other teams would be stupid if they didn't try the same things."