Ryp-roaring Redskins romp Faceless cast teams with QB, stops Bills, 37-24

THE BALTIMORE SUN

MINNEAPOLIS -- For the Washington Redskins, Super Bowl XXVI was a work of art. It was their Picasso.

The 37-24 victory over the Buffalo Bills was the ultimate vindication for the system of coach Joe Gibbs, who got his third Super Bowl victory with hard-working, virtually faceless players who proved you don't need stars to win championships.

"It's a little bit of everybody getting it done. We don't just wait for somebody who's supposed to be a star to make plays," Gibbs said. "That's what I think our team exemplifies."

The Redskins are the fourth team to win three or more Super Bowls. The Pittsburgh Steelers and the San Francisco 49ers have won four and the Oakland-Los Angeles Raiders three.

It was the eighth straight victory for the NFC, and six of them

have been blowouts.

The Redskins let the Buffalo Bills do all the talking during the week but did all the talking themselves on the field yesterday.

"There's no question we're definitely the undisputed world champions," said defensive end Charles Mann.

It started with Mark Rypien, who was supposed to be a fumble-prone, injury-prone quarterback, but was developed by Gibbs over a six-year period into a Super Bowl Most Valuable Player.

Rypien, who beat the Bills at their own game by mixing in some no-huddle with Washington's regular offense, passed for 292 yards and two touchdowns and was intercepted only once.

He made a pair of critical third-down passes to Gary Clark in the third period for the touchdown that put it out of reach after the Bills had narrowed their deficit to 24-10.

"I'm just happy to be a part of the team," Rypien said.

That's the Redskins way. They like to pass the credit around.

"The players deserve the credit," Gibbs said. "I, along with the other coaches, was just along for the ride."

On defense, the Redskins' system again showed it can befuddle a high-powered offense with a series of different looks.

They did it in the playoffs against the run-and-shoot offense and they did it to the Bills' no-huddle offense.

Although Jim Kelly passed for 275 yards (on a Super Bowl-record 58 attempts), he was sacked five times and intercepted four times.

The Redskins also shut down Thurman Thomas, who spent the week complaining that he doesn't get enough attention. Held to 13 yards in 10 carries, Thomas, as usual, said he didn't get the ball enough, although it should be noted that Mann agreed with him.

"They just didn't use him today. I was surprised they didn't run the ball more," he said.

The Redskins probably took them out of their game plan and it didn't help that Thomas lost his helmet at the start of the game and missed the first two plays when he was scheduled to run.

The Redskins did it on defense by blitzing a lot -- stealing a page out of the game plan the Denver Broncos used against the Bills.

As defensive lineman Bruce Smith said, "They blitzed us all day. Everybody watched the same game. We saw the same thing you saw."

Coach Richie Petitbon, the assistant coach who runs the Redskins' defense, was even able to get players substituted even though the Bills were running the no-huddle.

"We wound up with plenty of time. We drilled all week with signals," Gibbs said.

The Redskins did it even though they lost three players on defense -- defensive backs A.J. Johnson and Darrell Green and linebacker Monte Coleman.

That hurt their depth, although Green came back from his calf injury, but the key was that the unsung players came to the front for the Redskins.

Brad Edwards, a former Plan B free agent, intercepted two passes and even got two votes for MVP. Martin Mayhew, another Plan B free agent who was supposed to be the weak link of the secondary, tipped one of the passes that Edwards intercepted.

Kurt Gouveia, who started at middle linebacker for Matt Millen, intercepted a pass at the start of the second half that set up a touchdown.

Alvoid Mays, a player who was working in an orange juice factory in Florida when the Redskins gave him a shot two years ago, came in when Johnson got hurt and knocked the ball out of Kelly's hands for a fumble.

Rypien, though, who stepped up and led the drive when the Bills had a shot at turning it into a game.

After the Redskins scored 17 points in the second quarter and then added a touchdown at the outset of the second half that was set up by Gouveia's interception for a 24-0 lead, the Bills struck back for 10 points to narrow the deficit to 24-10.

At this point, the Redskins looked as if they might be starting to sag, especially since Green, Coleman and Johnson were out.

"We thought we had them on the ropes," Thomas said. "I thought we were getting them a little bit tired."

Rypien, though, then put together an 11-play, 79-yard drive that gave the Redskins a 31-10 lead.

Rypien kept the drive alive with a 10-yard pass to Gary Clark on a third-and-four play and finished it off with a 30-yard touchdown pass to Clark in the right corner of the end zone on a third-and-10 .

"We had run the same play inside all game long," Rypien said. "This time, Gary made a little head fake, then took it to the corner. We set up the play perfectly."

Thomas said of the drive, "That kind of took us out of it."

Chip Lohmiller then added a pair of fourth-period field goals to boost the margin to 37-10.

At that point, some of the celebrities in the crowd, including Donald Trump and Marla Maples, started filing out.

Kelly added two touchdown passes at the end, but all they did was make the score more respectable.

Kelly, who was a bit woozy after his helmet hit the ground on a play he didn't remember in the fourth quarter, said, "I'll try to remember as much as I can."

He remembered how well Washington played.

"You've got to give them credit. They played one helluva game," he said.

Bills coach Marv Levy said, "Defeats are always bitter. I can't remember one that was more difficult than today's."

The Bills had one just a year ago when they lost to the New York Giants, 20-19, when Scott Norwood was wide right with his field-goal attempt at the end.

The Bills are now the third team to lose back-to-back Super Bowls. The Minnesota Vikings and the Denver Broncos.

For the Redskins, all that was left was savoring the victory.

Gibbs said he enjoyed coaching the players.

"The players were so focused. I can't remember the times that I really got mad. We had very few small incidents from a disciplinary standpoint. Our team, gosh, [they are] a real classy bunch of guys who are very smart," he said.

"I really did feel like I had one of my most enjoyable coaching experiences. There wasn't turmoil. I didn't have to get on people to motivate them or straighten out off-the-field problems. We just didn't have that."

For Gibbs, though, there wasn't much celebrating. He's not a celebrating type of guy. He's probably already thinking about next year. He says he has no plans to walk away.

"We'll probably go someplace and have a chocolate sundae or something. That's about the size of it from the Gibbs end of it. I'm going to get with the family and have a good time,".

Gibbs should try a vanilla sundae. He's a vanilla guy with a vanilla team. All it does is win championships.

Coaching elite

Joe Gibbs is the first coach to win three Super Bowls with different quarterbacks. Coaches who have won more than two

Super Bowls:

Coach.. .. .. .. .. Year.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. QB

Chuck Noll.. .. .. .. XIV.. .. .. .. .. .. Terry Bradshaw

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. XIII.. .. .. .. .. .. Terry Bradshaw

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .X.. .. .. .. .. .. ..Terry Bradshaw

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. IX.. .. .. .. .. .. ..Terry Bradshaw

Bill Walsh.. .. .. .XXIII.. .. .. .. .. .. .. Joe Montana

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. XIX.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .Joe Montana

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. XVI.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .Joe Montana

Joe Gibbs.. .. .. .. XXVI.. .. .. .. .. .. .. Mark Rypien

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. XXII.. .. .. .. .. .. .Doug Williams

.. .. .. .. .. .. ...XVII.. .. .. .. .. .. .Joe Theismann

Composite standings

.. .. .. .. .. . W-L.. .. .. .. Pct... ... PF.. .. ... PA

Pittsburgh.. .. .4-0.. .. .. .1.000.. .. .103.. .. ... 73

San Francisco....4-0.. .. .. .1.000.. .. .139.. .. .. .63

Green Bay.. .. . 2-0.. .. ... 1.000.. .. ..68.. .. .. .24

N.Y. Giants.. .. 2-0.. .. .. .1.000.. .. ..59.. .. .. .39

Chicago.. .. .. .1-0.. .. .. .1.000.. .. . 46.. .. .. .10

N.Y. Jets.. .. . 1-0.. .. .. .1.000.. .. ..16.. .. .. . 7

Oak.-L.A. Raiders 3-1.. .. .. .750.. .. ..111.. .. .. .66

Washington.. .. . 3-2.. .. .. .600.. .. ..122.. .. .. 103

Baltimore.. .. .. 1-1.. .. .. .500.. .. . .23.. .. .. .29

Kansas City.. .. .1-1.. .. .. .500.. .. . .33.. .. ... 42

Dallas.. .. .. .. 2-3.. .. .. .400.. .. ..112.. .. .. .85

Miami.. .. .. .. .2-3.. .. .. .400.. .. . .74 .. .. ..103

L.A. Rams.. .. .. 0-1.. .. .. .000.. .. . .19.. .. .. .31

New England.. ... 0-1.. .. .. .000.. .. ...10.. .. .. .46

Philadelphia.. .. 0-1.. .. .. .000.. .. .. 10.. .. .. .27

Buffalo.. .. .. . 0-2.. .. .. .000.. .. .. 43.. .. .. .57

Cincinnati.. .. . 0-2.. .. .. .000.. .. .. 37.. .. .. .46

Denver.. .. .. .. 0-4.. .. .. .000.. .. .. 50.. .. .. 163

Minnesota.. .. .. 0-4.. .. .. .000.. .. . .34.. .. .. .95

Catching on

Gary Clark and Art Monk gained 114 and 113 yards receiving, respectively, last night. How their games rank in the Super Bowl record book:

E;Receiver, Team.. .. .. .. .. ..Year.. .. .. .. .. .. Yds.

Jerry Rice, San Fran... .. .. XXIII.. .. .. ... .. .. 215

Ricky Sanders, Wash... .. .. .. XXII.. .. .. .. .. .. 193

Lynn Swann, Pitt... .. .. .. .. . X.. .. .. . .. .. . 161

Rice, San Fran... .. .. .. .. . XXIV.. .. .. .. .. .. 148

Max McGee, Green Bay.. .. .. .. . I.. .. .. . .. .. . 138

George Sauer, N.Y. Jets.. .. .. .III.. .. .. .. .. .. 133

Willie Gault, Chicago.. .. .. .. XX.. .. .. ... .. .. 129

Swann, Pittsburgh.. .. .. .. ... XIII.. .. .. . .. .. 124

Vance Johnson, Denver.. .. .. .. XXI.. ... .. . .. .. 121

John Stallworth, Pitt... .. .. . XIV .. .. .. . .. . .121

Stallworth, Pittsburgh.. .. .. . XIII.. .. .. . .. .. 115

Clark, Washington.. .. .. .. .. XXVI.. .. .. .. .. .. 114

Monk, Washington.. .. .. .. .. ..XXVI.. .. .. . .. .. 113

Repeat performances

How the Super Bowl winners fared in their next season:

1967: Green Bay repeated and beat Oakland, 33-14, in Super Bowl.

1968: Green Bay finished third in Central Division with a 6-7-1 record.

1969: New York Jets lost to Kansas City, 13-6, in AFL divisional playoff.

1970: Kansas City finished second in AFC West with a 7-5-2 record.

1971: Baltimore lost to Miami, 21-0, in AFC championship.

1972: Dallas lost to Washington, 26-3, in NFC championship.

1973: Miami repeated and beat Minnesota, 24-7, in Super Bowl.

1974: Miami lost to Oakland, 28-26, in AFC divisional playoff.

1975: Pittsburgh repeated and beat Dallas, 21-17, in Super Bowl.

L 1976: Pittsburgh lost to Oakland, 24-7, in AFC championship.

1977: Oakland lost to Denver, 20-17, in AFC championship.

1978: Dallas lost to Pittsburgh, 35-31, in Super Bowl.

1979: Pittsburgh repeated and beat Los Angeles Rams, 31-19, in Super Bowl.

1980: Pittsburgh finished third in AFC Central with a 9-7 record.

L 1981: Oakland finished fourth in AFC West with a 7-9 record.

1982: San Francisco finished eleventh in NFC with a 3-6 record.

1983: Washington lost to Los Angeles Raiders, 38-9, in Super Bowl.

1984: L.A. Raiders lost to Seattle, 13-7, in AFC wild-card game.

1985: San Francisco lost to N.Y. Giants, 17-3, in NFC wild-card game.

1986: Chicago lost to Washington, 27-13, in NFC divisional playoff.

1987: N.Y. Giants finished last in NFC East with a 6-9 record.

1988: Washington finished third in NFC East with a 7-9 record.

1989: San Francisco repeated and beat Denver, 55-10, in Super Bowl.

1990: San Francisco lost to N.Y. Giants, 15-13, in NFC championship.

1991: N.Y. Giants finished fourth in NFC East with an 8-8 record.

How close?

0 Average winning margins in Super Bowl games:

Super Bowls XXI-XXVI.. .. .. .. 19.0

Super Bowls XVI-XXV.. .. .. .. 20.3

Super Bowls XI-XXV.. .. .. .. . 18.1

Super Bowls VI-XXV.. .. .. .. . 16.5

Super Bowls I-XXV.. .. .. .. .. 16.1

Highest scores

Pts... .. .. Year.. .. .. ..Winner.. .. .. .. .. . Loser

66.. .. .. ..XIII.. .. .. Steelers 35.. .. ... Cowboys 31

BTC 65.. .. .. ..XXIV.. .. .. . 49ers 55.. .. .. .. Broncos 10

61.. .. .. ..XXVI.. .. .. .Redskins 37.. .. .. .. Bills 24

59.. .. .. .. XXI.. .. .. ..Giants 39.. .. .. ..Broncos 20

56.. .. .. .. XX.. .. .. .. Bears 46.. .. .. Patriots 10

54.. .. .. .. XIX.. .. .. .. 49ers 38.. .. .. Dolphins 16

52.. .. .. .. XXII.. .. .. .Redskins 42.. .. .. Broncos 10

50.. .. .. .. XIV.. .. .. ..Steelers 31.. .. .. .. Rams 19

AFC East vs. NFC East

Super Bowl.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. Score

V.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. Colts 16, Cowboys 13

VI.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. Cowboys 24, Dolphins 3

VII.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. Dolphins 14, Redskins 7

XVII.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..Redskins 27, Dolphins 17

XXV.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . .. .. Giants 20, Bills 19

XXVI.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . Redskins 37, Bills 24

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