The gift & the curse.
The year that time forgot.
The season in and of itself, seems to have been so long ago, that if it wasn’t for the Offensive ROY award and division title– you could get people to believe that it never happened.
How in the world did we get from there to here? I personally feel, the blame lies with every single party involved.
If you are a Washington Redskins, Robert Griffin III or simply avid football fan, you no doubt have an opinion on how we arrived at this point.
A place where the former #2 overall draft pick has been relegated to the spot normally held for the…”emergency QB” on most NFL rosters. And what’s amusing is, no matter your belief in how this happened, you are more than likely right.
- front office
- overall organizational stability and integrity
- coaches (Shanahan and Gruden)
- Robert Griffin III
(owner who scouts players, watches game film and creates gameplans)
I believe a smart enough student with the right guidance, could easily concoct a dissertation on the dysfunction of this franchise since Daniel Snyder took over. No the owner does not study game film, practice or play in real games. No he does not scout and acquire talent (he shouldn’t anyway), create game plans or manage in-game action. But he is responsible for hiring the right people, to make decisions to the best of their ability, to piece together what resembles a professional football organization. Notice I didn’t say a good team, but merely a professional football outfit.
What seems like forever ago, this franchise used to be both a good team and a well run and respected organization. But if you are neither, you don’t have a strong enough foundation to make a “RGIII to DC” move work.
Robert is a highly intelligent, gifted talent, that unfortunately lives and breathes today’s society. Translation, he’s talented, not really used to failure, and he shares everything he’s going through online.
He comes from a system in college, that does not teach the subtle nuances of playing quarterback in the traditional sense. Was drafted into a situation where an OC (Kyle Shanahan) created a system for him that offered a seamless transition to the pros. From which he earned accolades and success from day 1. And this in my opinion is where the real trouble began.
#10 came into the league with the hype machine bestowed upon all #1 overall caliber players who so happen to be quarterbacks. He comes across as a very likable and bankable guy from a great family, with a squeaky clean image, who provided one helluva quote after one helluva quote. Think Varsity Blues, portrayed on the pro level. Then he had the audacity to lace’em up and succeed…cue the hype monster.
CONFIDENT PLAYER x IMMEDIATE SUCCESS x INCREASED FAN PRAISE (raised to the media hype machine power) =
Presenting, the overshare. A place in time where RGIII show’s where he has never met a microphone he was afraid to speak into.
RGIII says that he wants to be looked at similarly to Aaron Rogers, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady (pocket passers, not running quarterbacks). No problem there. But without their traditional quarterbacking foundations, newly minted NFL Offensive ROY (and savior of a franchise), is said to have told his then coaches in the off-season what he wasn’t going to run. Ok. Then there was talk of more disagreements with his coaches, to which his relationship with ownership further fractured that player-coach dynamic (or at least it’s perception). Uhhh. Then came the decision to allow him to rush back from injury to start in game one of the 2013 season opener–without a healthy offseason of working in a more traditional pro style setup. The offense he wanted.
Cue failure from rust. Failure from years of mismanaged off-seasons, of not acquiring solid to Pro Bowl caliber OLine talent (to the right of #71). Failure of a QB being allowed to force his way into something, he was not ready for and the team was not built to allow him to grow into. Which ushered in, hello injury, as a result of a number of factors. And the pièce de résistance, the severing of ties with the coaches (especially Kyle Shanahan), who should have been allowed to slow walk the transition into a more “traditional” QB.
Question. How is it that a talented KID, who thrived in a non-long term system for one season, is provided the off the field power of a perennial All-League talent?
Where were the adult(s) in the room that could explain to all parties what reality is, and then lay out a plan to get everyone where they wanted to go?
And why do you follow that up, with a flash in the pan signing, in Jay Gruden (this question is rhetorical)? An uber-hot NAME HC candidate, with an offensive background– when more QB “project” friendly choices (Whisenhunt or Grimm) were available? I forget if Ken was available that year, but Grimm definitely was.
Did anyone stop to think how those egos would mesh? Was Jay given a Robert is the present and future speech? A, make sure you keep that in mind when you put your offense together, speech? Was it ever discussed, that this is a bad team, so we will make moves on and off the field that will allow for consistent progression to something greater? OR, did everyone fall into the we’re only a year removed from a playoff appearance bs? The we can be good and compete now, bs? The 2012 team was a good team (which it wasn’t) and 2013 was a fluke, so we can turn it around quickly bs?
Ladies and gentlemen, the RGIII experiment was doomed from the start, because it should have never happened in Washington. That 2012 squad could have stood pat and took Tannehill (who has turned into a solid young QB) or nabbed Russell Wilson in the second and used their first round pick on any of the other currently held in high regard talented players (Luke Kuechly, Michael Brockers – who they’ll see in week 2, Dontari Poe, Dre Kirkpatrick, Michael Floyd, Chandler Jones, etc.). Then they could have acted like a halfway decent franchise and used subsequent picks to replenish the coffers with young viable talent (especially up front on both sides of the ball).
I’m sure many are saying, the draft is a crap shoot. And whose to say they wouldn’t have used the pick on a bust, or found a way to screw up one of these players. Or, don’t forget, the SnyderSkins don’t believe in drafting. The sad thing is, you’re right. But what if…
As a Redskins fan, I definitely would have traded the ride that was 2012 for a steady build the right way– knowing what we know now. As a Robert Griffin III fan, because of that magical rookie season and the physical talent he possesses, I wish there was a way that things could still work here. But I don’t see how that happens with Jay at the helm. Not to mention that ship took a cannon shot to the starboard side before the Skins played their first game last season. That relationship is irreparable, from a personal standpoint.
If you’re going to draft this kind of talent, you have to support that talent (with what he needs, not what he “allegedly” tells you he needs). Draft and spend actual money on the lines. Go with a run heavy offense, so you can pass when you want, until he’s more comfortable with legitimately passing whenever you want. Strengthen the defense with the necessary talent and the right coaches. And hire someone to tell him to stop talking so much and teach him how to play the game at this level.
But mismanagement. The same thing that has derailed this once proud organization that is now nothing short of the biggest laughing stock in the NFL due to it’s dysfunction…would never allow for that.
The Redskins are like that parent that wants to be friends with their child, instead of actually parenting them.
This organization from the top down, was never built properly to receive a player like Robert, and has done absolutely nothing to help him get out of his own way, since landing in Washington.
Which is what makes it so ironic that when the team finally gets it right from a “foreman” (McCloughan) standpoint– actually hiring a respected football mind and getting ownership to stop meddling in player affairs (stop looking at the screen like that). Deciding to go with a power run game and make drafting offensive lineman a priority,with intentions to take pressure off the QB position…
That we could be seeing this, for the last time.
But out of the city and in a much, much less dynamic and heralded fashion.
IMHO, Robert Griffin III, can play football at this level as a starting QB in the NFL. But he needs the right organization and HC combo to make it work. He doesn’t need to have his confidence broken, but he needs to be made aware of who he is AT THIS POINT and what it will take for him to get where he ultimately wants to go. From there it’s all about buy-in and putting in the work (without the vintage RGIII soundbites or hashtaggable slogans).
I swear, you’ve gotta really love this team, to continue to follow it.
And sadly…I do.