It’s not all about RGIII’s Knee
Lets Start with the cold hard facts shall we.
Last week, against the Green Bay Packers, Robert Griffin was 26/40 with 320 yards through the air while picking up 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. 7 quarterbacks threw for more yards than Griffin in week 2 and 3 of those won their games. Last year, as a rookie, he averaged a mediocre 213.3 yards through the air and the first two games this season, 324.5. He is averaging around 40 yards less a game on the ground. The nonsense of a so-called “quarterback debate” arises here.
Let me start by saying that, any quarterback who adds 100 yards passing onto their game from being a rookie should be praised. Especially when your off-season consisted of sluggish run throughs and little full speed action (not by choice). I can recall the beginning of offseason, Adrian Peterson making claims he would break the single season rushing record, Peyton Manning saying his arm felt better again (which we can all see he wasn’t lying), and “Mr. Mobile” himself, begging Shanahan to get back on the practice field.
This has become a debate about whether or not RGIII can still scramble and make plays outside of the pocket, which I assure you he can. On the contrary- isn’t this what Redskins fans and Shanahan were asking for? “Robert Griffin needs to learn how to play in the pocket better so he doesn’t run into hard hitting injury situations.” That was/is probably what you heard any feebleminded fan or analyst say, was it not? But *knowing all to well,* sacrificing one thing for another (mobility for pocket presence) is what people do when creating superstars in Madden NFL, the video Game. This however is one of the greatest athletes we have seen in a long time.
I’m not going to sit here and act as if I know his knee is 100% (which I really do think it’s good enough to scramble on) but the fact is, the packers dropped back into coverage all game, knowing Shanahan wasn’t going to let his “prized possession” use his instincts.
In fact, I bet before the game he told Robert to stay in the pocket on those 3rd and 10s and wait for someone to get open. When dealing with a kid as special as Griffin, his instincts are one of his most valuable attributes you cannot put a stat on. Last year, time and time again we witnessed “nowhere to go” situations. Then just like that, he’d have a card up his sleeve that nobody saw.
The talk about waiting until week 6 or 7 to really see RGIII become fully mobile again? Nonsense if you ask me, let the dog loose! Down 0-2 , no team making the playoffs with that record since 2004 (which doesn’t hold too much weight to me), they might be inducing the sophomore slump.
Yes, a coach who is willing to have his QB sit in the pocket and get hit while babying him and not letting him “create”? Sophomore slump.
I’ve said little about Cousins, and although I think he’s a decent quarterback, I don’t think he’s not going to average 320 yards through the air, in the pocket. Honestly, we know he’s not a mobile QB.
It would be Shanahans own selfish motive if he doesn’t let Griffin loose next game against Detroit. A below average defense led by the low blow Master Suh, I’m thinking he could experience more potential injury inside the pocket than out. Cousins would keep Griffin off the field even longer, hurting him as a captain and loosing his trust. At the end of the day, LET RGIII DO WHAT RGIII DOES BEST. Win.