THN Home Page
Home >> Washington Legend Joe Bugel

Joe Bugel

Bugel circa 2006
Assistant Coach
Munhall, PA
March 10, 1940
High School
Munhall, PA
Western Kentucky
NFL Career
32 Seasons
Washington Redskins
1981-1989, 2004-2009

Career Highlights

• Two-time Super Bowl Champion (XVII, XXII)
• Three Super Bowl Appearances
• Washington Redskins Ring of Fame 2010
• Washington Redskins 80 Greatest
• Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame


• PFWA Jack Horrigan Award 2002
• George Halas Courage Award 2010
• Order of the Leather Helmet

Buges: Boss Hog

Joe Bugel was one of the most beloved coaches in the history of the Washington Redskins. He was also one of the greatest offensive line coaches that the game has ever seen.

He was born on March 10, 1940, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and was raised in the small town of Munhall, Pennsylvania. From an early age, Joe had a love for football, and he played the sport throughout his high school and college years.

After graduating from Munhall High School, Joe went on to attend Western Kentucky University, where he played college football for the Hilltoppers. He was a standout offensive tackle for the team, earning all-conference honors in his senior year.

Following his graduation in 1964, Joe embarked on a coaching career, starting at his alma mater as a graduate assistant. Over the next few years, Joe worked as an assistant coach at several colleges, including Navy, Iowa State, and Ohio State.

In 1975, he made his way to the NFL when he was hired as the offensive line coach for the Detroit Lions. From there, he moved to the Houston Oilers in the same position from 1977-1980.

In 1981, he landed with the Washington Redskins and Joe Gibbs. He became both the offensive line coach, and the offensive coordinator. In 1983, he was given the additional title of Assistant Coach.

Joe Bugel was also known for his colorful personality and his love for the game of football. He was a beloved figure among his players, and his energy and enthusiasm were infectious. He was often seen on the sidelines, shouting encouragement to his players and celebrating their successes.

Bring On The Hogs

It was that personality that largely contributed to him being responsible for developing the famous “Hogs” offensive line. His impact during his tenure as the team’s offensive line coach from 1981 to 1989 cannot be overstated. He transformed the group into one of the most dominant units in NFL history, which led to the team ultimately winning three Super Bowl championships.

The Hogs were made up of a group of talented offensive linemen, but under Bugel’s guidance, the players developed into a cohesive unit that could overpower even the most fearsome defensive lines in the league.

Bugel’s coaching style was characterized by his enthusiasm, passion, and attention to detail. He was known for his intense practices, where he would push his players to their limits, demanding perfection in every aspect of their game. He was also a master motivator, always looking for ways to inspire his players and get the best out of them.

Much of the success of The Hogs was due in part to Bugel’s unique approach to coaching. He understood that offensive linemen were often overlooked in the game of football and believed that they deserved more recognition. He embraced their hard-nosed, blue-collar style of play, and his enthusiasm for their work helped build a strong bond between coach and players.

Cultural Phenomenon

The impact of The Hogs was felt beyond the football field. They became a cultural phenomenon, and inspiring generations of Redskins fans. The team’s success under Bugel’s coaching led to a surge in popularity for the Redskins, and The Hogs became an iconic symbol of the team’s dominance during the 1980s.

In many ways, Joe Bugel and The Hogs changed the course of football history. They proved that an offensive line could be just as important to a team’s success as its quarterbacks and running backs, and they inspired a generation of fans and players to embrace the blue-collar style of play that had made them so successful. Bugel’s legacy will always be remembered, both in Washington D.C. and in the wider football community, as a testament to the power of passion, dedication, and hard work.


Post Washington

Due to his success with the Redskins, Joe was hired as the head coach of the Phoenix Cardinals in 1990. He never seemed to quite take off in the role, but served as the head coach until 1993.

After a little time off, buges joined the Oakland Raiders as the Assistant Head Coach for offense in 1995 and 1996. He was the head coach there in 1997.

Then he joined the San Diego Chargers from 1998 until 2001 as the Offensive Line Coach.

Back To D.C.

Then of course came the return of the Joes to Washington. Joe Gibbs was hired to take over Dan Snyder’s Redskins in 2004, and Gibbs brought his old friend Buges back with him to coach up the offensive line. They didn’t experience as much success, but they did make the playoffs twice, and Joe proved that he could still get it done.

He remained in that position until 2009.

Despite an impressive resume, Bugel was never inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Still, his contributions to the sport were undeniable, and he is widely respected as one of the best offensive line coaches in NFL history.

Sadly, Joe Bugel passed away on June 28, 2020, at the age of 80.

RIP Joe Bugel

Away From The Grid Iron

In addition to his coaching career, Joe was a devoted husband and father. He was married to his wife, Brenda, for over 50 years, and together they raised three daughters – Angie, Jennifer and Holly.

In his retirement, he remained active in the football community, attending games and events and continuing to support the sport he loved.

His death was mourned by the football community, with many of his former players and colleagues paying tribute to his legacy. He will always be remembered as a legend of the game, a coach who inspired his players and shaped many men.

Legends Banner

More Washington Legends Profiles

Sammy Baugh

Larry Brown

Joe Bugel

Dave Butz

Gary Clark

Jack Kent Cooke

Pat Fischer

Joe Gibbs

Darrell Green

Ken Houston

Dexter Manley

Mark Moseley

Jerry Smith

Vince Lombardi



Washington History Section banner

THN Logo


Blogs Home Page

Washington Commanders (All)

Commanders News Blogs

Commanders Transactions Blogs

Commanders Wallpapers

Throwback Thursday

Flashback Friday

Top Daily Headlines

Top 50 Commanders Headlines

Top 50 NFC East Headlines

Top 50 NFL Headlines

Team History

Washington Team History

All-Time Record

Playoff History

Coaching History

Washington Hall of Famers

First Round Draft Picks

Logo History

Super Bowls

Super Bowl XVII

Super Bowl XXII

Super Bowl XXVI

The Hogs

History Of The Hogs

Hogs Quotes

Hogs Articles

Hogs Graphics

Hogs Profiles

Jeff Bostic

Russ Grimm

Joe Jacoby

Mark May

George Starke

Jim Lachey

Team Information

Commanders 2023 Free Agency Moves

Commanders 2023 NFL Draft Picks

Commanders 2023 UDFAs

Commanders 2022 Game Results

Commanders 2022 Schedule

Commanders 2022 NFL Draft Picks

Commanders 2022 Free Agency Moves


On Twitter

YouTube - Coming Soon

TikTok - Coming Soon

Copyright © 2002 - 2023 | DisclaimerThis site is an independent news, information and entertainment site covering the Washington Commanders and their fans. We are not associated with the Washington Commanders or any other media site.