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On This Date in Sports October 17, 1983

In collaboration with the Sportsecyclopedia.com

The Green Bay Packers host the Washington Redskins in a record-breaking shootout, that sees a Monday Night record 95 points scored as the Packers upend the Redskins 48-47, with five lead changes in the fourth quarter. The teams fell just 18 points of the overall NFL record for points scored in a game. The two teams also combined for 1,025 yards of total offense which was just 108 yards off the league record.

The defending Super Bowl Champion Washington Redskins entered a Monday Night battle with the 3-3 Green Bay Packers, holding a 5-1 record. The Redskins who had lost their season opener on Monday Night to the Dallas Cowboys had five straight wins and were putting up points at a record rate.

While offense ran the show, the game’s first score came on defense, as Green Bay Linebacker Mike Douglass scooped up a fumble by Joe Washington and returned it 22 yards for a touchdown. The Redskins nearly coughed up the ball again on the next drive as John Riggins fumbled at the goal line. However, Clint Didier pounced on the ball in the end zone to tie the game 7-7. The two teams would trade field goals on their next possessions, with Jan Stenerud connecting from 47 yards for Green and Mark Mosley connecting from 42 yards for the Redskins as the score was tied 10-10 after the first quarter.

In the second quarter Packers Receiver, Paul Coffman caught a pair of touchdown passes from Lynn Dickey, with John Riggins answering with a one-yard touchdown plunge as Mosely hit a field goal from 28 yards as the Packers led 24-20 at halftime.

In the third quarter, the Packers opened the scoring on a 24-yard touchdown run by Gerry Ellis to take the biggest lead of the game at 11 points. The Redskins, however, scored 13 unanswered points to close out the third quarter with Mark Moseley kicking field goals of 31 and 28 yards, while Joe Washington caught a six-yard touchdown pass from Joe Theismann to take a 33-31 lead after the third quarter.

In the fourth quarter, the Packers regained the lead on a two-yard run by Gary Lewis, with John Riggins answering on the next possession on a one-yard run by John Riggins. On the next Green Bay possession, Mike Meade caught a 31-yard touchdown pass from Lynn Dickey, while Joe Washington answered with a five-yard pass from Theismann to give the Redskins a 47-45 lead late in the fourth quarter. The Packers quickly moved the ball down the field helped by a 56-yard catch and run from Gerry Ellis to set up Jan Stenerud for a 20-yard field goal with 54 seconds left to give Green Bay a 48-47 lead. The Redskins attempted to answer, but Mark Mosley missed a 39-yard field goal allowing the Packers to hold on for the win.

The individual stats were just as impressive as Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann passed for 398 yards, with two touchdowns, while Lynn Dickey passed 387 yards with three touchdowns for the Packers. John Riggins, was the Redskins leading rusher with 98 yards and two scores, while Gerry Ellis accounted for 146 yards from scrimmage with a touchdown for Green Bay. Paul Coffman had 124 yards receiving with a pair of touchdowns for the Packers, while Art Monk had 105 receiving yards for Washington, with Joe Washington having 57 yards with two touchdowns.

The Packers improved to 4-3 with the win, on the way to finishing with a disappointing 8-8 record that led to the dismissal of Coach Bart Starr at the end of the season. The Redskins coached by Joe Gibbs dropped to 5-2 with the loss and would not lose again in the regular season, finishing at 14-2. The Redskins would set a record for 541 points scored that would stand for 15 years. The Redskins would go on to play in Super Bowl XVIII, losing to the Los Angeles Raiders 38-9.