On Saturday, July 21, the Redskins public relations department hosted the inaugural Redskins Media Bowl flag football game inside the indoor practice facilities at Redskins Park.
Let’s just say, it’s a good thing these guys are good at their day jobs.
A total of 30 media personalities appeared in the game, representing the various radio, television, print and online news outlets that cover the team in the Washington market. The teams were divided into Print/Radio (which donned the Redskins’ gold “Beat Dallas” shirts), and the Television/Online squads (wearing the Redskins’ burgundy “Beat Philadelphia” shirts).
Sideline staff (such as myself) suited up in the gray “Beat New York” shirts, just so there was equal disdain for all divisional opponents.
The ensuing exhibition proved that effort is no substitute for talent, but a lack of athleticism has its own entertainment value.
We pick up the action in the first of two 30-minute halves, where both offenses took a disturbingly long time to get started. After turning the ball over on downs multiple times, the Television/Online squad got first blood with a slant pass to WUSA-9’s Ismere Payton on the goal line. Unsurprisingly, the extra point attempt failed.
TV/Web 6, Print/Radio 0.
The Radio portion of the Print/Radio team was led by Kevin and Rock of 106.7 The Fan, who are fairly talented athletes. Carving up the field with his laser/rocket arm, Kevin hit Rock over and over, before finally finding Washington Times’ Rich Campbell as time expired in the first half (who caught the ball despite enduring several very personal fouls):
Extra point: not even close.
Halftime score: TV/Web 6, Print/Radio 6.
After a much-needed water break, most players were physically cleared to return for the second half, a minor miracle in itself. With 30 minutes of team cohesion under their belts, the offenses began to click in the second half, as Print/Radio took their first lead on a Kevin-to-Rock touchdown pass.
Extra point attempt: do you really need to ask? Print/Radio: 12, TV/Web 6.
On the ensuing drive, a star receiver was born for the TV/Web team, which desperately needed a playmaker. Enter the Redskins Broadcast Network’s own Charlie Broyhill–Coordinating Producer by day, flag football star by night. After spending much of the first half snapping the ball at center, Broyhill deeked the defense by snapping the ball and then running a delayed route over the middle. After a catch and a few nifty moves, Broyhill reached paydirt, and his team tied the game.
Then, amazingly, the TV/Web squad went for two–a pass to WUSA-9’s Nicole White–who skated into the endzone for the 14-12 lead.
Finally rolling on all cylinders, the TV/Web squad would strike once more, in the form of another WUSA-9 touchdown, this time to Omar Mohammed. Extra point fail, TV/Web ahead 20-12.
Despite having arguably better athletes, the Print/Radio squad struggled on offense, needing a Herculean effort on defense to get back in it. Enter Kevin Shaffer, perhaps the best two-way player of the day, who took advantage of a Lake Lewis quarterback fumble near the goal line, cashing it in for another Print/Radio touchdown. Print/Radio now only trailed by two points, and could conceivably get the ball back with four minutes remaining in the game.
If they could complete that comback, Kevin was a lock for Media Bowl MVP. With two minutes remaining in the game, the TV/Web squad took over at midfield, determined to get the win.
But they didn’t.
Without a clear voice in the huddle, Print/Radio crumbled in the red zone, finally turning the ball over on downs.
Final score: TV/Web 20, Print/Radio 18.
The MVP panel (which included yours truly) unanimously selected RBN’s Charlie Broyhill as the game’s MVP. Charlie scored the momentum-changing touchdown today, following a solid start at center, and his defense was consistent throughout the game.
Honorable mention MVP’s went out to Kevin Shaffer (two passing touchdowns, fumble recovery for a touchdown), 106.7 The Fan’s Grant Paulsen (game-high three passes defensed, interception), and ESPN 980’s Chris Russell (two key receptions, consistent QB pressures, sack).
For hilarious footage from today’s game, make sure to tune into Redskins Nation on Monday evening, and check out the slideshow below: