Robert Griffin III is already a superstar, and superstars deal with criticism. The more popular you become, the more jealousy will inspire people to try to knock you down a peg. As a 23-year-old star quarterback in the NFL, RG3 has to accept that people are watching his every move and will jump all over him if he screws up — and even if he doesn’t.
Donovan McNabb hates that it has to be like that, and he vented about it to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports earlier this week.
“It’s depressing to me,” McNabb said. “It goes beyond the quarterback position — to have people dislike the kid already and he didn’t really even do anything? It’s depressing. This is a different arena he’s in — I lived it myself — where some people are going to dislike you because of your skin color, where they’re looking for reasons to come at you, and then you have all these people, [coach Mike] Shanahan, Dr. [James] Andrews, his father, saying things and this kid is caught up in the middle of it.”
RG3 has taken a lot of heat for being injury prone, which is obviously something he has no control over. Say what you will about his playing style, but Griffin is not trying to shred his knee just to spite fans. He has also been criticized for receiving wedding gifts from fans, although he did take the time to send this thoughtful note to one couple who bought something for him and his fiancee.
By all indications, RG3 is a humble individual who does his best to stay out of trouble and focus on winning football games. That being said, he is also very active with social media. While that can lead to some positive interactions with fans, it also results in less privacy.
McNabb may be depressed by the criticism RG3 has to deal with, but in many ways it’s a form of flattery. If he wasn’t a national icon, no one would even care to talk about him.
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