The upcoming 2014 NFL season is going to be a big one for the Washington Redskins and third-year quarterback Robert Griffin III. After making a surprising run to the NFC East division title in his rookie campaign back in 2012, the Redskins struggled big time last season…finishing in last place.
Mainly due to suffering a torn ACL as a rookie, RGIII wasn’t anywhere near the same player in 2013 as he was as a rookie. This limited him to just 16 touchdowns compared to 12 interceptions during a disastrous 3-13 campaign.
Now that Mike Shanahan and the majority of his coaching staff has been let go, the Redskins are looking to turn the page. According to new offensive coordinator Sean McVay, Griffin III looks “exactly” like he did back in 2012 (via The Washington Post).
I don’t think there’s any question: he looks explosive,” the first year coordinator said. “He looks like he is exactly what he was in the 2012 season. I think people underestimate when you have a brace on your knee how much that truly restricts you….So I think being able to take that off, he looks extremely explosive.
It goes without saying that RGIII’s explosiveness just wasn’t there in 2013. His bum knee had a major impact on what he did both inside the pocket and outside on the run. Too often, the young quarterback looked lost in the pocket. Some of that could have very well had to do with worries about a knee that wasn’t fully healthy.
In any event, things appear to be looking up for the signal caller.
And when you’re a quarterback that has the ability to kind of buy time with your legs, keep your eyes downfield and then if guys are playing with their back to the quarterback, now he’s got a chance to take off and run it and create yards that way,” McVay said. “So I think that’s going to be a big part of what he does.
One of the biggest knocks on how young quarterbacks are handled by coaching staffs is how they attempt to mold the player into something he isn’t. RGIII did a tremendous job extending plays as a rookie. Why not continue to play into that strength, especially if he is fully healthy?
With DeSean Jackson now in the fold and Jordan Reed returning from injury, the Redskins offense could very well be more explosive than any version we have seen in recent franchise history. Add Alfred Morris and Pierre Garcon to the mix, and the team from Washington could very well be looking at a division title in what promises to be a competitive NFC East.
Photo: The Washington Post