Category Archives: Robert Griffin III

RGIII Is Still Here, You Guys

Griffining Pose

It’s easy to forget, after the devastating knee injury and nightmarish sophomore season, just how valuable Robert Griffin III remains and how brilliant he can be. Here with a reminder, from his annual trade value column, is Grantland’s Bill Barnwell:

15. Robert Griffin III, QB, Washington

This is the player with the biggest gap between his ceiling and floor, right? The floor is Griffin suffering another knee injury that would make his issues (both in terms of physical fitness and ability to avoid hits) critical and evaporate his value. The ceiling? I mean, you can make a case that Griffin was the best quarterback in the league on a per-play basis as a rookie. He was fifth in completion percentage, first in yards per attempt and interception percentage, fifth in QBR … and that was with Josh Morgan and Logan Paulsen as two of his starting pass-catchers. He replaces those two in 2014 with DeSean Jackson and Jordan Reed. The wild card: new offensive coordinator Sean McVay, infuriatingly just 28 years old. Anything is possible from here.

I added a little emphasis on that bit about his rookie season, because I think people forget, if they even knew to begin with. In a league featuring Manning and Brady and Brees and Rodgers, rookie RGIII may have been the best of the bunch. As an added bonus, the Redskins won the division!

That seems like ancient history. It was a year and a half ago.

RGIII’s Stats Aren’t Bad, At Least

If you were to ask someone, “Hey, how much worse is RGIII than Russell Wilson and Luck and Kaepernick this season?,” I bet he or she would say something like, “Shoot, those guys left him in the dust a long time ago.” But, if you take team records out of it, here’s what their 2013 seasons look like:

Wilson is clearly out in front, but RGIII, Luck and Kaep are more or less the same — in that middle-third of quarterbacks with 80-plus ratings and the stats to go with it. Advanced stats may suggest differently, and I haven’t watched enough Indy or SF games to suggest otherwise, but it seems to me those three are in roughly the same boat, looking up at Wilson.

Of course, the biggest difference is that RGIII is on a very bad 3-10 team, while the other three helm teams with a combined record of 28-10. Seattle and San Francisco are also distinguished from Washington in that they have very good defenses. Indianapolis, for its part, does not feature the worst special teams unit ever.

All of which is to say, maybe it’s not as bad as we think it is for RGIII right now. He basically put up a sophomore season in line with his heralded peers, one in which he started every game and made it through injury-free. After last year’s trauma, that’s no small feat.

Also, just for fun, let’s compare RGIII’s 2013 to three other recent QB seasons, each of which is relevant in some way:

The Cam comparison is often made and is a hopeful one, given how he and the Panthers have rebounded in 2013. The Campbell one is just me stirring up old stuff, dispiriting though it may be. And, ah yes, Donovan McNabb. At least Griffin’s got him beat.

The 13 Best Tweets About Mike Shanahan Benching RGIII

Shanny benched RGIII earlier today, turning Twitter into a Redskins comedy factory. Our favorite tweets, in no particular order …

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RG3 Benched, Kirk Cousins To Start Against Atlanta

What began as a rumor looks to now be official: Skins coach Mike Shanahan will shut down RGIII for the remainder of the season and let Kirk Cousins play. The news is everywhere now, and the latest shows that Rex Grossman will be the backup Sunday in Atlanta, putting Griffin on the inactive list.


At 3-10 and with Griffin taking a beating over the last five games, the move makes football sense. But considering the mess that has become the Redskins organization since last Sunday morning, who knows the true motivation in benching RGIII.

Like always with this ongoing trainwreck, stay tuned for more; both Shanahan and RGIII are scheduled to talk later today.

Should RGIII Be Benched?

Following Mike Shanahan’s press conferences on Sunday and Monday, the possibility of Robert Griffin being benched for the final three games has been the HOT TOPIC de jour around this team. So let’s talk about it.

Pros:

– RGIII won’t get hurt. He won’t spend all offseason rehabbing. He won’t miss the entire training camp and every preseason game.

– Kirk Cousins gets to show some leg. If it looks sexy enough, we might be able to flip him for a draft pick or two. We need some of those.

Cons:

– RGIII’s development is stunted via less live action. As evidenced by his interception on Sunday, he could use the game experience.

– Kirk Cousins plays a little too well, and we’re left with the only topic that brings out the stupid more than the name change debate: A quarterback controversy where there isn’t one.

What say you, fellow sad Redskins fans? Vote and leave your thoughts in the comments.

(For the record, I’m strongly in favor of benching RGIII for the rest of the season. The potential damage far outweighs the potential benefits of him playing in three meaningless games. Oh, and Pierre Garcon. He should be benched just so he doesn’t break Art Monk’s receptions mark.)

Deion Sanders Is Not Impressed By RGIII’s Pregame Speechifying

I’m a big fan of London Fletcher’s hype work. RGIII’s, though? As evidenced by yesterday’s pregame speech, he may need to practice in the mirror. Here’s what Deion Sanders had to say during the NFL Network’s Redskins-Bears segment (via Chris):

Deion: “That sounded like that was off a teleprompter.”

Chris Rose: “What’s the matter with reading something off a teleprompter?”

Deion: “Not when you’re speaking to your team. (Imitating RGIII’s voice) ‘We’re going to get our breakthrough.’”

In a related story, a Google search for “Deion Sanders pregame speech” yields … nothing of substance.

Later on they showed Devin Hester’s punt return TD, over which Marshall Faulk said, “Fire the punter,” not once but twice. Would that be the same punter who boomed the ball and pinned Hester to the sideline, right where Niles Paul was waiting (but failed) to tackle him? Maybe Faulk was just reading off a teleprompter.

Brady, Manning and Peterson Weren’t Great In Their First Two Games Back Either

Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson had different injuries than Robert Griffin III. They were on different timelines and in different situations, etc. They’re different players, and, like all people everywhere, each is a precious snowflake.

Two games is also a small sample size, I know, but that’s what we have to work with when analyzing post-devastation RGIII. And I’m willing to bet that no one in New England, Denver or Minnesota was calling for Brady, Manning or Peterson to be benched after two games, either.

It’s a good thing, too, because each of them got way better after their first two games back from major injury. Again, that doesn’t necessarily mean anything for anyone else, but it is interesting.

Tom Brady in 2009

Tore his ACL and MCL in the first game of the 2008 season.

First two games of ’09: 62.0% completion percentage, 297 yards/game, 5.9 yards/attempt, 2 TD, 2 INT, 76.8 rating. Team went 1-1, including a one-point win over Buffalo.

Last 14 games of ’09: 66.5% completion percentage, 272 yards/game, 8.2 yards/attempt, 26 TD, 11 INT, 100.3 rating. Team went 9-5.

Peyton Manning in 2012

Missed all of 2011 due to a series of neck surgeries.

First two games of ’12: 68.3% completion percentage, 247 yards/game, 7.8 yards/attempt, 3 TD, 3 INT, 93.9 rating. Team went 1-1.

Last 14 games of ’12: 68.9% completion percentage, 298 yards/game, 11.7 yards/attempt, 34 TD, 8 INT, 107.5 rating. Team went 12-2.

Adrian Peterson in 2012

Tore his ACL and MCL in Week 16 of the 2011 season.

First two games of ’12: 72 rushing yards/game, 4.4 yards/carry, 2 TD. Team went 1-1, including a three-point win over Jacksonville.

Last 14 games of ’12: 140 rushing yards/game, 6.2 yards/carry, 11 TD. Team went 9-5.

Note: Peterson really got better after his first six games.

Robert Griffin III in 2013

Tore his ACL and LCL in January 2013.

First two games of ’13: 62.9% completion percentage, 325 yards/game, 7.3 yards/attempt, 5 TD, 3 INT, 89.6 rating. Team went 0-2.

Last 14 games of ’13: TBD.