Robert Griffin III’s knee injury suffered against the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday has led to many questions about the Redskins’ handling of the situation. Was it a bad decision by Mike Shanahan to have RG3 start the game? Was Shanahan negligent in letting Griffin remain in the game after he was examined in the first quarter and clearly not well?
Shanahan admits he’s second-guessing himself, while Griffin remains steadfast that he wanted to play no matter what.
“I think I did put myself at more risk by being out there, but every time you step on the football field, you’re putting your life, your career, every single ligament in your body in jeopardy,” Griffin said after the game. “That’s just the approach I had to take towards it. My teammates needed me out there, so I was out there for them.
“You respect authority and I respect Coach Shanahan, but at the same time you have to step up and be a man sometimes. There was no way I was coming out of that game.”
Griffin believed in his abilities despite his injury.
“I don’t feel like me being out there hurt the team in any way. I’m the best option for this team, and that’s why I’m the starter.”
Griffin acknowledged that the ultimate decision about whether he would play was up to his coach. Shanahan says Griffin convinced him to play.
“I talked to Robert. He said to me, ‘Coach, there’s a difference between injured and being hurt. I can guarantee I’m hurting right now, give me a chance to win this football game because I guarantee I’m not injured,’” Shanahan explained after the game. “That was enough for me.”
Shanahan further defended himself against those who feel he was putting Griffin’s long-term health at risk.
“We would not play Robert if we thought there was a risk of him further injuring that LCL.”
I think Griffin’s comments and point of view are commendable. Who wouldn’t want their quarterback to have that kind of attitude? And if I were in Shanahan’s position, I would want Griffin starting my team’s playoff game too. But after seeing how ineffective he was following the first quarter injury, how do you not pull him? RG3 could barely move, he could barely plant to throw, and he just wasn’t anywhere near his normal self. After seeing all that, I would have pulled Griffin and put in Kirk Cousins to give the team its best chance to win. Shanahan exhibited poor judgment by not making that switch when it was obvious Griffin could hardly play.
You can see video of Griffin and Shanahan’s comments below: