The Redskins have a history of having solid inside linebackers who can stop the run while also being dependable in coverage. Outside linebackers/pass rushers will be included on this list because the Redskins have used a 3-4 defense for the past ten years.
The linebacking groups of the Washington Redskins have been difficult to match up against throughout the years, whether it’s a genuine defensive signal-caller like London Fletcher or a versatile pass rusher like Ryan Kerrigan. With that in mind, here is my list of the ten greatest Redskins linebackers.
Below is a list of my top 5 linebackers for the Washington Football Team. They are the Washington Football Team Best Linebackers Of All-Time
The #1 slot should not be debatable, as it has been with most of my rankings. Hanburger spent his entire 14-year NFL career with the Redskins.
After spending his first season primarily as a backup, Hanburger rose to the top of the Washington defense and started practically every game he was healthy and ready for. During his remarkable Hall of Fame career, Hanburger was a nine-time Pro Bowler and four-time 1st Team All-Pro.
Hanburger’s only Super Bowl appearance was in 1972 when the Redskins were upset by the undefeated Miami Dolphins. Despite the fact that he never won a championship, Hanburger had a stellar career.
Ryan Kerrigan has quietly been one of the greatest and most consistent pass rushers in the NFL since his debut in 2011. Over the last nine seasons, only Von Miller, Chandler Jones, and J.J. Watt have more sacks than Kerrigan.
In his career, he has 90 sacks and is only 1.5 sacks away from breaking Dexter Manley’s team record. Throughout his career, Kerrigan has been a picture of consistency, averaging 10 sacks every season. He’s a four-time Pro Bowler and one of the Redskins’ top linebackers.
Kerrigan appears to have a few years left in the tank, despite the fact that he will likely play in a reduced role this season due to the team’s decision to draft Chase Young.
London Fletcher had a 16-year NFL career that was both successful and long. He spent the first nine years of his career with the Saints and the Buffalo Bills before joining the Redskins for the remaining seven years of his career.
It would be in Washington that Fletcher would have his most productive season. Fletcher made his first Pro Bowl appearance at the age of 34 in 2009, and he was named for the next three seasons. In 2011, he had his best season, leading the NFL with 166 tackles.
Fletcher was the defensive captain of every team he played for, calling defensive plays and motivating his teammates on the field. Fletcher ranks 7th all-time on the NFL’s iron man list, having started and played in 215 consecutive games, a feat that no NFL player, let alone a linebacker, has accomplished.
Although Monte Coleman was never a reliable starter for the Redskins, his contributions to the team should not be overlooked. Because of his longevity and versatility as a player, Coleman is ranked #4 on this list.
He spent 16 seasons in the NFL, all of them with the Washington Redskins. He was a special teams ace who was willing to fill any job that was assigned to him. Coleman also started several games as a linebacker for the Redskins, leading the NFL in tackles in 1980.
Coleman was a three-time Super Bowl champion with the Washington Redskins and deserves to be near the top of this linebacker list.
Ken Harvey made his mark on the NFL when he joined the Redskins in 1994 after spending his first six seasons with the Cardinals. Harvey, like London Fletcher, joined the Redskins late in his career and had his greatest years there.
As a starting outside linebacker, he made an immediate impact, racking up sacks and tackles en route to four straight Pro Bowl appearances with the team. Harvey had the greatest season of his career in 1994 when he had 13.5 sacks (a career-high) and 98 total tackles.