Cowboys CB Brandon Carr: ‘We know Robert Griffin III is not the same’

Robert-Griffin-RedskinsWashington Redskins fans are hoping their team’s bye week helps Robert Griffin III get back to being the dynamic playmaker he was a year ago. Griffin looked shaky at best during the first four games of the season, throwing off his back foot quite a bit and looking timid on read-option plays. Dallas Cowboys cornerback Brandon Carr sounds like he is counting on that continuing this weekend.

“He doesn’t look the same,” Carr told NFL Network’s Around The League Live on Thursday.” “That’s not saying we’re going to fall asleep on him. He still has the same arm strength. He still has some type of elusive ability once he gets outside the pocket. … But we know he’s not the same.”

That isn’t a shot at RG3. Griffin’s own teammate, wide receiver Pierre Garcon, said earlier this season that RG3′s knee brace slows him down and that he can’t run as fast as he used to. Garcon also said the team is running the same offense it did last season, which could be an issue if RG3′s mobility is that limited.

In reality, Griffin is likely going to have to become a better pocket passer for the Redskins to succeed. He’ll still make plays with his legs, but you can’t expect him to be the same athlete he was less than a year removed from the second major reconstructive knee surgery of his career. Fortunately for Washington, the Dallas secondary is coming off a week in which it was torched by the Denver Broncos for over 400 yards. Sunday would be a good time to try that whole pocket passing thing.


Robert Griffin III blames ‘dumb rule’ for his critical fumble


Robert Griffin III does not like to slide. Most scrambling quarterbacks are either fast enough to get out of bounds or used to breaking tackles, so RG3 has never really perfected the art of giving himself up to avoid contact. Had he slid during a crucial possession of Sunday’s loss to the Detroit Lions, the Redskins would have maintained possession of the ball.

At the beginning of the fourth quarter with the score tied 17-17, RG3 took off and ran for 21 yards — his longest rush of the season. Instead of sliding, he dove head first and fumbled the ball without being touched. Because he dove, the ball was still live.

“Yeah, it’s the rule,” Griffin said after the game, via DC Sports Bog’s Dan Steinberg. “And it’s a stupid rule. You’d think if you declare yourself down that you’d be down. I mean, I wasn’t falling. I was trying to get down to avoid a hit, slide, be out there for my team. Knee down, elbow down, and then the ball comes out. According to them, it’s a fumble. That’s just the way it goes. It just sucks.”

The concept was the same as sliding, but the rule book does not see it that way. Once a quarterback slides, the play is dead. That means as soon as his backside touches the ground he cannot fumble. However, a player must be touched in order to be ruled down after diving head first. RG3 hadn’t been touched, so the ball was free for the Lions to recover.

The simple solution here? Griffin needs to learn to slide. For starters, it will protect him from taking any unnecessary hits. As an added perk, he might not be able to cough up the ball as easily.

H/T Pro Football Talk

Tony Dungy thinks Kirk Cousins would give Redskins better chance to win

The Washington Redskins have fared so poorly in their first two games of the season that people are legitimately questioning whether the team would be better off playing Kirk Cousins at quarterback since Robert Griffin III is nowhere near 100 percent healthy.

Robert Griffin knee braceWashington coach Mike Shanahan was asked on Monday whether he has considered benching RG3 for Cousins, and he gave a big smile and pretty much laughed off the suggestion. But there are people who think they should make the switch to Big Cuz, and former Indianapolis Colts coach Tony Dungy is one of them.

Dungy just doesn’t think Griffin is ready to play at the level he needs to be at.

“You always want your big guns out there, and they want to be out there — they want to be out there to help their team,” Dungy told Dan Patrick on Monday. “But I’m seeing a guy who is not doing the same things that he did last year. So you’re saying we’re going to change the offense, we’re going to tailor it, we’re going to keep him safe and let him throw from the pocket, he’s still a good quarterback. And he is all that. But he’s not 100 percent, and he’s not presenting the problems that he did in the past.”

In addition to not being the same dangerous presence that he was, Dungy is concerned that Griffin could get hurt.

[Read more...]

Pierre Garcon: Robert Griffin III is slowed down by his knee brace

Robert-Griffin-knee-braceWashington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III is still trying to shake off the rust in the wake of his second major knee surgery. Through the first two weeks of the season, he has been horrible. Thanks to RG3′s shaky play and an incredibly porous defense, the Redskins are 0-2. Wide receiver Pierre Garcon has found at least one thing to blame for the slow start — Griffin’s knee brace.

“Robert obviously can’t run as fast as he did last year because of his knee brace and his knee,” Garcon told ESPN980 Radio on Tuesday. “But it’s the same offense, to be honest with you. It’s nothing different. It hasn’t changed at all.”

The play calling may be similar, but the offense is hardly the same. Griffin is either too timid to take off and run or Mike Shanahan and Kyle Shanahan are not calling as many designed runs in order to protect him. Whatever the reason, opposing defenses simply don’t have to worry RG3 taking off on them at the moment.

“Well, when you’re walking around with a knee brace or playing with a knee brace, obviously it’s slowing you down a little bit,” Garcon added. “It’s just natural. I don’t know how much it weighs, exactly, but you always think about it when you have it on there, and it’s a constant reminder.

“It’s not gonna let you be the guy you are without the knee brace. When you have something around your knees — the more equipment you have on, it’s obviously distracting you or slowing you down from being as free as loose as yourself without any equipment on.”

And then there’s the fact that RG3 has to deal with calls from the league telling him to cover the brace up during games, but that’s a separate discussion in itself. Growing pains are to be expected, as Griffin did not play or practice at all during the preseason. The problem is the Redskins are digging themselves into an early hole. If RG3′s legs are not a threat, Washington simply isn’t going to win many games.

Robert Griffin III: NFL kept telling me to cover up my knee brace

Robert-Griffin-knee-braceWashington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III looked extremely rusty in his first game back from reconstructive knee surgery on Monday night. Fans were anxious to see how he would respond to live action, but apparently the NFL didn’t want viewers getting distracted by his knee brace.

The Washington Post pointed out on Tuesday morning that Griffin covered his knee brace with his uniform pants and sock throughout the course of his team’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Why? Because the league insisted.

“Everybody in the league kept calling down to our sideline saying I needed to cover the brace up,” RG3 said after the game. “I don’t understand that one. But that’s why we had to continue to do some stuff to cover the brace up with my sock. It was the same brace. It just looked bigger because they kept putting stuff over it.”

A Redskins spokesman told the Post’s Mark Maske that the order came from the NFL’s uniform inspector in the press box.

“Man, I don’t know what the league’s doing,” Griffin added. “I got fined 10 grand for a shirt. I mean, I don’t know.”

RG3 was fined a few weeks ago, presumably because he wore this shirt on the field during pregame warmups before one of Washington’s preseason games. He is not the first player we have seen receive a fine for choosing to wear apparel that is not issued by the league, but what’s the deal with the knee brace?

Did Griffin’s knee brace have an Adidas logo on it or something? He did not cover the brace up last season. RG3 provided no explanation as to why the NFL wanted him to hide the brace, so for now it remains one of the many bizarre mysteries involving the No Fun League’s uniform policy.

Clay Matthews may have referred to Robert Griffin III as ‘what’s his name’ (Video)

Clay-Matthews-interviewThe Green Bay Packers will have their hands full with read-option quarterbacks to begin the 2013 season, with their first two games coming against the San Francisco 49ers and Washington Redskins. Colin Kaepernick and Robert Griffin III are two of the most athletic quarterbacks in the game, so the Packers were happy to get some practice in against Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks in their third preseason game on Friday.

After the game, Clay Matthews was asked if facing Wilson helps his team’s defense prepare for the regular season.

“It’s real good preparation,” he said, per DC Sports Bog. “We start out the season with the 49ers. I mean, we got…uh…what’s his name?”

CBS Sports’ Tracy Wolfson then asked Matthews if he was talking about Kaepernick. He smirked and gave the following response.

“No no, the Redskins, coming here Week 2,” he said. “So it’s great preparation.”

Was that a shot at RG3? Or was he saying the Packers don’t even need to prepare for “what’s his name” Colin Kaepernick? Perhaps Matthews simply had a brain fart and wasn’t trying to disrespect anyone, but his facial expression made it seem like he was trying to ruffle feathers.

The Packers didn’t face the Redskins last season, but they were completely exposed against Kaepernick and the Niners in the playoffs. If they don’t do a better job of adjusting to read-option quarterbacks this season, Matthews will learn RG3′s and Kaepernick’s name fairly quickly. Remember how Osi Umenyiora learned his lesson with giving Griffin his own nickname?

Robert Griffin III fined $10,000, likely for wearing ‘Operation Patience’ shirt


Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III is no stranger to apparel controversy. Last year, he covered up the Nike logo on his undershirt to prove his allegiance to adidas. Griffin received a warning from the NFL and assured the league it would not happen again.

While he did not cover up a brand logo earlier this week, RG3 was still fined $10,000 for something that he was wearing. The Washington Post reported on Thursday that Griffin has been fined for an “apparel violation,” and the assumption is that it had to do with the “Operation Patience” shirt he wore during pregame warmups on Monday.

The shirt is a reference to RG3′s road to recovery, but it is not league-issued. As someone who was once fined $10,000 for wearing adidas gear to a postgame press conference, Griffin is more than familiar with the NFL’s rules regarding apparel. While a lot of people will complain that the No Fun League is being ridiculous again, rules are rules. Griffin knows them and has chosen not to follow them on multiple occasions. Perhaps being fined is worth it for him.

H/T Shutdown Corner