Chapter 3, Page 91

Charley Harraway
Toward a title game again: Charley Harraway breaks away for a 57-yard touchdown run to help defeat Dallas 20-16 on October 3, 1971, on the way to the Washington Redskins' first playoff berth since 1945.
(Richard Darcey/The Washington Post)
On the plane ride home, Allen allowed his players to sip from nine magnums of champagne. The next day, his post-game news conference at Redskins Park brought more of the same. The only folks Allen disliked more than rookie starters were reporters, those pesky people who always peppered him with questions he didn't want to answer. But on this day, two bottles of champagne were popped for the media — the label read "Chateau de George" — and Allen offered up comment after comment.

"Imagine playing that game on TV," he gushed. "Pete Rozelle came up to me before the game. He was just thrilled about this being the final Monday night game, and I told him, `Even Cecil B. DeMille couldn't upstage you on this one.' Imagine, the 13th game on December 13, and both teams having to win it."

His cheerfulness, however, was short-lived. After losing a meaningless regular-season finale to Cleveland, the Redskins went through a week of controversy as they prepared to face San Francisco in the opening round of the playoffs.

The turmoil began early in the week when Allen complained bitterly that none of his defensive players had made the Pro Bowl team. During the week, a reporter also drew Allen's ire when he wondered why the Redskins had been able to score 180 points in the first half of their regular-season games but only 96 in the second half.

Page 91 | Next Page: 92

Other Pages in Chapter 3:
79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112

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