Friday, April 6, 2012
More thoughts on RG3 and Gruden camp
By Dan Graziano
The Robert Griffin III episode of Gruden's QB Camp, which aired Monday night, was generally well received. People were impressed with Griffin, who came off as cool and smart and completely composed during the half-hour special. The Washington Redskins fans from whom I heard came out of the thing even more excited than they already were at the idea of Griffin as their team's new quarterback.
But there was one minor issue a few people raised, more as question than as criticism. More than one person has asked me why Griffin's show was so focused on Griffin's personality while Andrew Luck's, which aired three days earlier, was so much more focused on Xs and Os. If you watched Luck's, you'll remember a lot of film study, a lot of chalkboard time and a lot of repetition of the phrase "Spider 3 Y banana." We saw very little X-and-O stuff during Griffin's show.
So, in an attempt to get this question answered for you, I reached out to Monday Night Football producer Jay Rothman, who was happy to explain that they collect more than five hours of tape for each of these shows and must, of course, cut that down to the most compelling possible 22 or 23 minutes (to account for the commercials). Additionally, they've made 10 of these this year, with 10 different quarterbacks. The Luck and Griffin ones were just the first two to air. They don't want each of them to feel exactly the same.
"In the case of RG3, he had such a great personality, the stuff he was giving us was compelling," Rothman said. "Each of the shows has its own personality and feel, and I think at the end of the RG3 one, fans got a sense of what the kid was all about. In the body of the storytelling, you get a sense of the kid -- his personality, his smarts, all of that."
The important thing to remember is that Griffin was put through the same X-and-O paces by Gruden as Luck was. That stuff just didn't make it on-air. But if you really want to see it, you will get your chance.
Rothman told me that Gruden occasionally brings in a guest when he feels it's appropriate to the subject, and he invited former NFL quarterback (and Heisman Trophy winner and No. 1 pick) Vinny Testaverde in for the chalkboard portion of his time with Griffin. The producers are in the process of editing that portion of the session -- Griffin being grilled on Xs and Os by Gruden and Testaverde -- to air on a future edition of "NFL Live." So at some point in the future (I'll try my best to let you know when), you will be able to see that portion of Griffin's time with Gruden, if you're hungry for more.
Also, I'm going to take this chance to plug our programming some more. The Griffin show airs three more times this weekend and 29 more times total over the next month and a half. This is the full schedule of Gruden's QB camp programming, which will also feature eight more quarterbacks before it's all said and done. I'm enjoying them very much, and I hope you will too.