One of the tropes I grew up with is that George Allen, in 1972, outwitted the Green Bay Packers in the divisional round of the playoffs by playing a five man front and daring the Packers to pass. So, as we’re talking a ton about defensive fronts on this blog, I was curious. Was this Bud Wilkinson’s Oklahoma defense (video here), or perhaps an 8 man front, perhaps a 5-3? Was it lineman on lineman or was it gapped? What did George Allen’s five man front look like?
Looking for video can lead you to Hulu, as Hulu is pretty good about having video that even NFL’s Greatest Games won’t sell. There are team highlights of the 1972 Washington Redskins, but nary a sign of the vaunted five man front. It’s ironic, because there is a well developed tribute page to the 1972 Green Bay Packers, but almost nothing devoted online to the innovation that led to Green Bay’s defeat.
The only image I have of the Washington defense in that game is the one below, where clearly Washington is playing a 4-3 under.
So I’m looking. I suspect the best information I can obtain will be in the oral histories of Washington Redskins players.