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Vincent Had A Short Stay...With One Big Play




The Redskins and veteran Troy Vincent parted ways on Thursday.

Vincent's stay with the Redskins wasn't a long one, but his clutch play on Nov. 5 versus Dallas will go down as one of the more memorable plays in franchise history.

It was a breath of fresh air in an otherwise disappointing 5-11 season.

The five-time Pro Bowl cornerback worked his way into the starting lineup for Gregg Williams' defense as a safety. But he really left his mark as a Redskin for what he did for Danny Smith and Washington's special teams.

To get a 15-year veteran on the field for special teams is noteworthy in and of itself. But Vincent did a lot more than that on Week 9.

That day at FedExField, he blocked a 35-yard field goal attempt by Dallas kicker Mike Vanderjagt with six seconds left and Dallas seemingly on the verge of another win over its NFC East rival.

The play led to a 30-yard return by Sean Taylor, and after a 15-yard face mask penalty was called on the Cowboys, the Redskins had a chance at game-winning field goal.

Nick Novak connected on a 47-yarder, and the Redskins defeated Dallas 22-19 in stunning fashion.

For his block, Vincent was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week.

The Redskins brought in the veteran of NFC East play in the days following the 25-22 loss, shocking at the time, to Vince Young and Tennessee at FedExField.

In his few months at Redskin Park, Vincent brought an exceptional veteran presence to his new team.

It speaks volumes about Vincent that he was among the first Redskins players to run on the field to lift Novak after his game-winning kick versus Dallas.

Further, Vincent didn't celebrate very long that night. In fact, he stayed up late on that Nov. 5 evening pondering ways to help the 3-5 Redskins improve.

"I'm still thinking about what we didn't accomplish," he said.

Vincent has certainly accomplished a lot in his career. A native of Trenton, New Jersey, Vincent played his college ball at Wisconsin. He was the seventh overall pick in the 1992 NFL Draft by Miami and played four seasons in South Florida.

He became a staple in the Eagles' secondary for eight years before moving off to Buffalo in 2004.

Well respected on and off the field, Vincent serves as president of the NFL Players Association. He has also been awarded the NFL Walter Payton Man of the Year award for 2002.

If Vincent chooses to play again in 2007, he will likely draw interest from teams needing a veteran defensive leader. He would certainly make a great coach as well.

As for the Redskins, they move forward with several options at safety. Vernon Fox, Adam Archuleta and Pierson Prioleau are options. Safety is among the strongest positions in terms of talent in April's NFL Draft.

When he joined the Redskins last year in October, Vincent had this to say: "This is a proud organization, with a lot of tradition. I'm not the answer, but I do believe I can bring a lot of value."

Looking back, he most certainly was the answer in that unlikely Nov. 5 win over the Cowboys.

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