RG III: 'can't worry about doubters'
August, 25, 2014
By John Keim | ESPN.com
ASHBURN, Va. -- The criticism ranged from a former quarterback turned broadcaster to others questioning not only Robert Griffin III, but the Washington Redskins in general. A week ago he tweeted about the doubters. Monday, he said he's not worried about them.
Griffin's up-and-down performance this preseason, including a bad outing at Baltimore, led to more questions about him.
"We can't worry about what outsiders think," Griffin said. "You can't worry about what doubters or what anyone on the outside says. Everybody in this locker room is all we got and all we need. So what anyone says outside of it doesn't matter to us, doesn't affect us, doesn't affect our approach to the game, doesn't affect us on the practice field or the game field. We're the ones that have to go play so you just block all that stuff out and move forward."
That was the theme of the day: Moving forward. It's also still just the preseason, but after last season there was hope the offense would be further along, and Griffin in particular. The Redskins' No. 1 offense, through three preseason games, did not produce a touchdown in 10 drives.
A lot of the burden falls on Griffin, who two years ago was the future of the NFL but after last year people wonder about that same future. As a rookie, the Redskins used his legs a lot more -- on designed runs and also on the threat of runs with zone read play-action fakes (and stretch zone play-action). This offseason, new coach Jay Gruden was determined to turn him into a pocket passer.
"Every athlete progresses differently," Redskins tight end Logan Paulsen said. "Every individual progresses differently and for a quarterback it's a slow progression usually to develop a comfort level with a new offense. He's working against some good defenses. The progression is appropriate, and I think you'll see how much he's progressed Week 1."
Griffin said he does not feel like he's struggling. The coaches have said they've seen progress as a passer -- against Cleveland he had a number of good throws, though one very bad one.
"As an offense we put together a bad game and they go as I go," Griffin said. "So I have to play better. But I thought we did a good job the first two preseason games. We'll move forward whether it's this week or Week 1 ready to play offense at a high level."
The word time has been used in reference to Griffin quite a bit. As in, he'll need more of it to develop into the sort of quarterback both he and the team wants him to become. Griffin knows that could be the case; he also knows what he wants right now.
"We'll be as patient as we possibly can be, but at the same time we want to be great," Griffin said. "That comes with a lot of responsibility. It's going out to practice every day ready to go. We know it's not going to start clicking right away, but once again we still want to make sure it is. As long as we're working toward that we'll get there and put up some big numbers and do some great things."