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Remebering LaVern 'Torgy' Torgeson's Redskins Career


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LaVern "Torgy" Torgeson has passed away. He was 86 years old.

Torgeson, a seven year veteran of the NFL, played three seasons at center and linebacker with the Redskins (1955-57), earning two of his three Pro Bowl selections while in Washington.

He made his mark with the team, however, as the longest-tenured assistant coach in Redskins history, spending more than two decades primarily directing the defensive line.

Over his three stints (1959-61, 1971-77, 1981-93) he was a part of all three Redskins Super Bowl victories, and one of only three members to be part of all five Super Bowl appearances, and had the opportunity to serve under head coaches George Allen and Joe Gibbs.

"I'm elated to get Torgeson back," Gibbs told the Washington Star in 1981. "I feel he is the ideal person to work with the defensive line. He brings the experience and the knowledge that will fit perfectly with our defensive scheme. His coaching has resulted in his defensive lines to be ranked in the tops of the league for a long time. The players know and respect him."

Just prior to signing his final contract with the Redskins, Torgeson had taken the Los Angeles Rams to a team-record 56 sacks, the best in the NFC in 1980, while ranking third in total defense.


In a Q&A with the Washington Times in 1984, Torgeson reflected on joining the Redskins when he was traded from the Detroit Lions midway through his career.

"It's always hard for a player to be traded, to have to move from one city to another. But once you get there you adjust. I've been back and forth with the Redskins several times now."

A native of LaCrosse, Wash., Torgeson had an impressive career collegiately at Washington State, too. As captain of the team he won numerous honors and was inducted into the State of Washington Sports Hall of Fame in 1994.

The Redskins Park flag is flying at half-staff in his honor. 




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