Sunday, August 3, 2014
RG III report: Learning from Tom Brady
By John Keim
RICHMOND, Va. -- Robert Griffin III already has played against elite quarterbacks, ones with Super Bowls in their past and Hall of Fame speeches in their future. He hasn’t spent three days practicing against one, however. That is why he’s looking forward to this week’s workouts with the New England Patriots.
They will practice with the Redskins Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday in Richmond. The teams will meet in the preseason opener Thursday night.
“To tell you I won’t be looking at Tom Brady and seeing what he’s doing would be a lie,” Griffin said. “I’ll be looking at him. He won’t be the focus of my attention the entire time he’s here. But he’s been a great quarterback in the league for a long time, so you want to soak up whatever knowledge from him.
“But at the end of the day I have to practice against the New England Patriots’ defense. I’m past the googoo gaga eyes over players that you see on the field.”
In his first two years, Griffin has faced Super Bowl winning quarterbacks such as Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Ben Roethlisberger, Eli Manning and Joe Flacco. He also went up against Philip Rivers and Tony Romo.
But this week provides Griffin a unique opportunity to watch a future Hall of Famer up close.
“If I get a chance to sit down and talk to him, I’d love to, just to pick his brain,” Griffin said. “But he’s also still playing quarterback in the NFL. It’s a competitive position, a competitive sport. So I don’t expect him to give me any groundbreaking secrets.”
It’s not as if Griffin and Brady play the same style. Brady is a pocket passer; Griffin obviously uses his legs more to extend plays. But he still wants to see how Brady handles being in the pocket; it’s a part of his game that Griffin wants to -- and needs to -- improve.
“You always want to take things from other quarterbacks,” Griffin said. “Growing up, watching John Elway. The command in the pocket that Tom Brady has, being able to step up and maneuver and move around even though he might not be the fleetest afoot. You want to control the line like Peyton Manning does. You want to make athletic throws like Aaron Rodgers. Those guys have amazing attributes and you take that from their game and add to your own. I’ll never mimic anybody else. You just have to make it your own.”