Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Redskins minicamp: RG3 speaks
By Dan Graziano
ASHBURN, Va. -- Yes, I watched practice in the new bubble. And yes, I spoke with several different players on the roster. But Washington Redskins rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III gave a news conference at the end of the day, and they told us it was his final interview before training camp. So, while there will be a lot more Redskins topics addressed on this blog in the coming days, right now you're getting RG3...
Robert Griffin III, No. 10, said he's enjoying learning from Redskins veterans, including Rex Grossman.
...on getting to know his receivers:
"You kind of know which guys are good at which routes. Of course, they're all good at all of them and they're all always open. But as a quarterback, you can kind of pick out and see what guys can really do great things. Pierre [Garcon] had a great catch today, just showing that skill he has.
(Note: It was an incredible one-handed catch in the corner of the end zone on a ball that appeared to have been overthrown and destined for the arms of a defensive back.)
...on plans to work with the receivers off-site in the down period between minicamp and training camp:
"We're all going to get together. We haven't planned it yet, but we are going to get together and throw. It's important for us to be successful as a team, and working together like that is what you have to do. It's not to a massive scale or anything, but I've talked to a couple of the receivers to try to see if we can hook up and throw together just to stay in tune. But it's not official yet."
"It's been great. Little tips like, 'Let guys get set on motion,' and 'This is what you need to look for versus this defense' is what Rex is a big help with. That's what you need. You need guys that are on your side, guys that aren't looking to stab you in the back, guys who are looking to build the whole franchise up. Santana's definitely one of those guys. It's a dream to play with guys like him and Cooley, so I'm just going to try and make the most of it."
...on measuring risk when taking off and running past the line of scrimmage as a quarterback:
"One thing I won't do is play with fear. You have to play fearless. That doesn't mean I'm going to go try and run over linebackers and safeties, but I'll be smart. If I need to slide, I'll slide. If I need to run out of bounds, I'll run out of bounds. But if it's third-and-3 and a crucial point in the game, don't expect me to be sliding. If it's at the end of the game, I won't slide. Don't expect that. But if it's early in the game, I don't have a problem with it. It's not a shot at my manhood. I've slid before. I've run out of bounds before too. I've been laid into out of bounds before too. That's 15 yards. Keep them coming."
I like listening to Griffin talk. He's confident without being overly arrogant. He's genuine. He's good and he knows it, but he's got just the right amount of humility about the whole thing. You believe him that he'll know when to slide. His coach believes it, too.
"In college, he carried the ball close to 700 times," coach Mike Shanahan said. "And when you carry the ball close to 700 times, you get a feel for when to slide and when to run out of bounds. I think he's got a natural feel for that. But he's very quick and he'll make some plays that are off-schedule, and that should be a big advantage for us."
That is the idea, of course. What these next few months are about is learning and preparing. It sounds as though Griffin doesn't plan to take a break from any of that.
"I live a blessed life," Griffin said. "And I'm going to go out there and make sure I continue to live that blessed life."