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Capitol Police extend winning streak in defeating lawmakers at Congressional Football Game

Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-Texas) arrives to the House Chamber on Friday, April 1, 2022 for votes regarding the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act.
Greg Nash
Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-Texas) arrives to the House Chamber on Friday, April 1, 2022 for votes.

Capitol Police defeated a team of lawmakers at the 13th annual Congressional Football Game on Wednesday, extending their winning streak with back-to-back victories in the friendly rivalry.  

The game, which featured the Mean Machine, a group of bipartisan congressional lawmakers, and the Guards, a team of Capitol Police officers, took place at Audi Fieldin Washington, with the Guards prevailing for a second consecutive year, this time by a final score of 19-8. 

The rivalry has been a bit one sided to say the least, with the Mean Machines’ first and only victory in the series having been in 2019. Despite the poor track record, lawmakers were still confident that they could notch a victory this year. 

“We are going to do the long pass and outrun them at every turn,” said Rep. Jake Ellzey (R-Texas) in the pre-game. “You know we’re faster than they are.” 

Whatever hope the Mean Machine had going into the game however quickly dissipated as quarterback Robert Dold, a former Republican congressman from Illinois, struggled mightily to move the ball against the Guards’ defense, which forced three interceptions in the first half. 

On the other side of the ball for the Guards, quarterback Reggie Tyson, a former Elon University quarterback from 1993 to 1998, managed to connect with teammates Mike Lee and David Bailey in the end zone, en route to the Guards taking a 13-0 lead into halftime.  

The Mean Machine would score the first points of the second half as their coach and former NFL linebacker Ken Harvey sacked Tyson in the end zone for a safety in the third quarter. 

Midway through the fourth quarter, the Mean Machine showed signs of life as they attempted to rally, driving the ball deep into the red zone in a 13-2 game. However, the Guards defense proved to be too stifling, and was able to force a turnover on downs from inside the 10 with their backs against the goal-line. 

The ensuing drive for the Guards, Tyson delivered the dagger completing a bomb down the left sideline to former University of Maryland wide receiver Alexander Fletcher for six. With the clock ticking down in the fourth, Dold was able to connect on a long strike to Mean Machine coach and former NFL defensive back John Booty for a touchdown making the final score a more respectable 19-8 loss for the Mean Machine. 

Booty said he was disappointed with the results and to add insult to injury he also said he injured himself on the late touchdown for the Mean Machine in the loss. 

“Man, I pulled my hamstring, I’m hurting, my ego is hurting,” said Booty. “My ego is hurting. I thought we were going to do a lot better than what we did, but it’s all for the cause right?” 

The game benefits the Capitol Police Memorial fund, which was started in 1998 and provides financial support to families of officers who are severely injured or killed in the line of duty. This year’s game generated over $400,000 for that and several other charitable organizations through corporate sponsorships, ticket sales and fundraising. 

David Bailey, who scored a touchdown in this year’s game, was one of the officers injured defending Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) during an incident involving an active shooter at a congressional baseball practice in 2017. Bailey said that following the incident the Capitol Police Fund helped him and his family.

“It helps us out a lot because a lot of us are not used to being off of work for such a long time,” said Bailey. “The memorial fund really helps us and our families, like it helped my family, it helped my mom out when I was gone.”  

Updated 9:52 a.m.

Tags congressional football game Jake Ellzey John Booty Robert Dold
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