No. 7 – Brad Johnson (1999-2000)
Brad Johnson was never considered good enough. Not after his first Pro Bowl selection (for Washington in 1999). Not after his Super Bowl win with Tampa in 2002. The ninth-round draft pick was beginning to thrive in Minnesota when an injury opened the door for the flashier Randall Cunningham. Charley Casserly gave up a lot to bring Johnson to Washington and Johnson rewarded the GM’s faith by leading Washington to its first playoff victory in almost a decade.
He regressed some the following year but still managed to lead the team on a mid-season run that had them 6-2 at the midpoint. Then Johnson hurt his knee, and one of Dan Snyder’s shiny new toys, Jeff George, got into the game. George failed to produce, but he was a big name with a big arm, and that was the way the new owner wanted things.
Charley Casserly had already been jettisoned. Coach Norv Turner was on his way out. And Johnson would soon follow. He ended his brief run in DC with a 17-10 record, a Pro Bowl and a playoff win. They were one bad snap away from a potential winning field goal in their second playoff game in 1999.
Johnson would go next to Tampa Bay, where he would put up virtually identical numbers to those he had produced with the Washington Football Team. In 2002, the year he won a Super Bowl with Tampa Bay, Washington went 7-9.