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Robert Griffin III takes jab at Mike Shanahan, Kyle Shanahan

Mike Shanahan Robert GriffinRobert Griffin III is relieved to not be playing under Mike Shanahan and Kyle Shanahan this season. We know that because the former Baylor star has alluded to it a number of times. RG3′s most recent shot at the Shanahans came when he was speaking to reporters on Thursday about his struggles last season.

Griffin had a fantastic rookie season before falling victim to a brutal sophomore slump. He threw only 16 touchdowns passes and 12 interceptions in 13 games last season. He finished 2013 with a passer rating of 82.2. Some blame a slow recovery from ACL surgery, but it sounds like Griffin blames the coaches.

“You don’t go from the ability to read defenses one year and not have that ability the next, so I don’t believe that one bit,” he said, via Pro Football Talk. “And it’s really just a good thing to have two coaches that believe in you. Sean and Jay have done a great job. They’ve given me a lot on my shoulders in that quarterback room and I cherish that. You want to be asked to do more or just to do the bare minimum.”

I wouldn’t be surprised if Griffin has a big year in 2014. The fact that he is healthier than last year will certainly help, but so will having a good relationship with Jay Gruden. As a first-year head coach, Gruden will likely give Griffin more freedom. The confidence RG3 and Gruden have in each other should translate to success on the field.

If nothing else, it seems like RG3 will be much happier heading into the season. That has to count for something.

Kyle Shanahan has reportedly decided to stop working with father Mike Shanahan

Kyle-Shanahan-RedskinsMike Shanahan’s future with the Washington Redskins remains unclear, but it seems his son has made up his mind. According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan has decided he will stop working with his father beyond this season.

Kyle was the offensive coordinator for the Houston Texans before joining his father in Washington in 2010. He recently told reporters he was “disappointed” in his father’s decision to bench Robert Griffin III and that he would rather roll with his franchise quarterback. If you assume Mike authorized Kyle to speak to the media about that issue, it’s probably safe to assume the elder Shanahan was setting the stage for the younger Shanahan to separate himself from his old man.

As Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk pointed out, it may not be that simple. Daniel Snyder has reportedly been hesitant to fire Mike Shanahan and his staff because he does not want to pay for the remainder of their contracts. That would include Kyle’s.

In any event, the mess in Washington has obviously created an awkward dynamic. The burden of that ultimately falls on Mike, who is more toward the end of his coaching career. Whereas his son is still very young by NFL coaching standards, I’m sure Mike wants what’s best for Kyle. Getting out from under his father’s shadow should help.

Marshall Faulk: Kyle Shanahan would be fired if he had a different last name

Marshall-FaulkRobert Griffin III has taken a lot of criticism over the past week for the way he carried himself after the Washington Redskins lost to the Philadelphia Eagles. Earlier this week, Santana Moss said he would like to see Griffin take more responsibility for himself after RG3 said the Redskins were out-coached and pointed out that his receivers failed to get open. Hall of Fame running back Marshall Faulk has come to Griffin’s defense.

During Thursday night’s NFL Network pregame show, Faulk said he feels RG3 is not getting the help he needs as a quarterback who is only in his second NFL season.

“This bothers me in so many ways,” Faulk said, via DC Sports Bog’s Dan Steinberg. “I mean, listen, you’re in the huddle with the quarterback. And let’s say the quarterback calls the wrong protection. There needs to be someone in that huddle to know, whoawhoawhoa wait wait wait, we can’t run that protection with that play. Someone needs to know that, to help him out.

“We’re treating RGIII as if he’s a seasoned veteran. This is year two. Not to mention, he didn’t play any preseason. And I’m not making excuses for him, but those type of things don’t make it to the media.”

Griffin reportedly called the wrong protection on the final play against the Redskins, which led to pressure from the Eagles’ defense and a brutal interception. Faulk also questioned head coach Mike Shanahan and his son Kyle Shanahan’s play-calling.

“Let’s not forget, RG3 is a franchise quarterback, and he needs to be treated like a franchise quarterback,” Faulk said. “And if that means the plays that are being called are not to his liking? Guess what you do. You call the plays that he likes, because he has to run those plays.

“Let’s just say that that guy’s first name was Kyle, and he didn’t have a last name. He’d be fired.”

My opinion? Everyone is right. There are plenty of things wrong with the Redskins, including but not limited to Griffin’s unwillingness to take responsibility, his slow recovery from a second ACL surgery, and the Shanahans’ stubbornness. The best thing the team can do at this point is stop playing the blame game.

Kyle Shanahan emphatically predicted a Redskins’ NFC East title a year ago

Kyle-Shanahan-RedskinsThe Washington Redskins finished in last place in the NFC East last season. While the addition of Robert Griffin III brought plenty of excitement to the nation’s capital, few experts believed the Redskins would win the NFC East crown in the rookie’s first year as the team’s starting quarterback. Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan never cared what the so-called experts thought.

As D.C. Sports Bog reminded us on Wednesday, Shanahan gave an emotional speech to the team before its loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the final game of the season last year. His message was simple — next year is our year.

“Hey, about an hour ago, their D coordinator told us, told [offensive line coach Chris] Foerster, that if the Giants would have lost last week, they were in the playoffs,” young Shanahan said. “He didn’t mention that they still had to beat us today. [Bleep] him, [bleep] these guys, In 2012 the Redskins are gonna be the NFC East champions, and that starts right [bleeping] today.”

Did he actually believe it? We’ll never know for sure, but Shanahan certainly looks pretty good right about now. Rex Grossman predicted the same would happen last season, but he ended up being very, very wrong. Of course, that was before RG3.

Griffin is obviously the big difference-maker, but perhaps there was some truth to what Grossman said about the Redskins at the conclusion of the 2011 season. Shanahan had no way of knowing for sure if Washington would be able to draft Griffin, but he saw the same potential Grossman saw. We love bashing people who make ridiculous predictions that never come true, so it’s only fair to give credit where credit is due. Shanahan was right, and as a result the Redskins are contending for a Super Bowl.

Kyle Shanahan reportedly chases down, curses at replacement ref after game

It seems everyone is upset with the NFL’s replacement officials these days, but some are able to handle it better than others. Generally speaking, the coaches and players from losing teams are more upset with the refs than those who won. Shocking, I know. After the Redskins lost to the Bengals on Sunday, Washington offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan was seen chasing down and reportedly berating a replacement official in the tunnel heading into the locker room.

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