Lifestyle

Congressional Football Game Resumes After COVID-19, Capitol Riot

The Congressional Football Game resumed Nov. 3 at Audi Field in Southeast before 2,000 fans after being postponed last year due to the coronavirus pandemic and just 10 months after the U.S. Capitol insurrection that claimed the lives of several U.S. Capitol Police officers.

“It was important that we played the game this year,” U.S. Capitol Policeman David J. Bailey said. “A lot of things have happened since we played in 2019: the pandemic and the incident at the Capitol on Jan. 6. Those of us in the U.S. Capitol Police are a brotherhood and a sisterhood. We are teammates on and off the field.”

The event first kicked off in 2004 to benefit the U.S. Capitol Police Memorial Fund to aid the families of fallen officers. The biennial game pits members of the U.S. Capitol Police, known as the Guards, against members of the U.S. Congress and former NFL players, identified as the Mean Machine.

The Guards Dominate the Game

The Guards raced to a quick lead in the first quarter and never looked back, securing a 26-6 victory.

Late in the first quarter, Guards wide receiver, Brett Jordan, scored the first touchdown of the game on a 20-yard pass from quarterback Reggie Tyson, followed in the second quarter with another touchdown with a pass from Tyson to Bailey, who ran 30 yards into the end zone. Minutes later, the Guards showed their superior athletic prowess with Tyson connecting to wide receiver Milton Harris on a touchdown pass in the end zone for a 20-0 advantage.

Neither team could put points on the scoreboard in the third quarter. But in the fourth quarter, the Guards added to their lead with a Tyson pass to receiver Mike Lee with 4:07 left in the game. The Mean Machine finally scored with 2:15 remaining on a 15-yard pass from Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) to former Washington Football Team Player Rocky McIntosh but missed the extra point attempt.

Reactions to the Event

Rep. Colin Allred (D-Texas), who played in the NFL for the Tennessee Titans, said losing to the Guards “hurt a bit” but noted the more important purpose of the game.

“We are here to raise money for charity and to thank the U.S. Capitol Police for the sacrifices they make for us each and every day we serve in Congress,” Allred said. “This game was for them.”

A spokesman for the event said over $600,000 in proceeds went to the U.S.Capitol Police Memorial Fund from a combination of corporate sponsorships, ticket sales and private donations.

Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.) said he enjoyed playing in the game.

“I loved it,” he said. “This is a great cause and it helps children. We all got sweaty and nicked up but it was worth it. I am so glad that this game gets us out of politics. We argue so much on the Hill that we forget we are men and women who care deeply about our country no matter what party we belong to.”

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