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While the Washington Redskins have gone from first to worst, quarterback Robert Griffin III has experienced a slide that is directly proportionate to his team's.
He has cost the Redskins games and could cost people their jobs -- and that won't turn out to be the biggest cost of all to Washington.
The St. Louis Rams have the Redskins' 2014 first-round draft pick, which is, as of now, the fifth overall choice. And that cost still could rise. Washington finishes the season with games against the Giants, Kansas City, at Atlanta, Dallas, and at the Giants. That first-round pick could turn out to be even higher, which would only add to the Rams' take in return for RG III.
So far, the Rams have turned Washington's picks into a bushel of players. They took the Redskins' first-round pick in 2012, traded back with Dallas and picked up an extra second-round pick, slid back a few more spots with Chicago for an extra fifth-round pick, and used those three picks on defensive tackle Michael Brockers, running back Isaiah Pead and guard Rokevious Watkins. They also used the Redskins' 2012 second-round pick on cornerback Janoris Jenkins.
Then, in the 2013 draft, the Rams traded Washington's first-round pick to Atlanta for an extra third-round pick and wound up with linebacker Alec Ogletree and wide receiver Stedman Bailey.
So there's the Rams haul: Brockers, Jenkins, Pead, Watkins, Ogletree, Bailey. So far.
Now the Rams are looking at potentially the highest pick yet from the deal. Then the book on the blockbuster RG III trade finally can be closed, with its cost calculated.
And during a season in which the Redskins' record keeps dropping, there's more bad news for Washington.
The price of RG III keeps going up.
|San Diego's Ladarius Green could be the next great NFL tight end.|
San Diego's Ladarius Green, a 2012 fourth-round pick from Louisiana-Lafayette, has begun to blossom and is only going to get better and make more plays.
The 6-foot-6, 240-pound Green has had 80 receiving yards in each of San Diego's past two games. Last Sunday against Kansas City, Green registered the first touchdown of his career, a 60-yard catch that was the longest play from scrimmage for the Chargers this season.
Green is too big for defensive backs to cover and too fast for linebackers to cover, some of the same reasons that Graham and Thomas are effective.
As San Diego tries to make its playoff push to somehow capture the elusive last wild-card spot in the AFC, Green could be a player who helps the Chargers get there. Green will be a factor for the Chargers in their stretch run this season and, more significantly, a bigger factor in future seasons.
The NFL experiences a year unlike any other: Exactly one year ago Sunday, former Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher fatally shot his girlfriend, drove to Arrowhead Stadium and committed suicide in front of his then-coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli.
Since then, the NFL has experienced a year's worth of events that are unprecedented, unimaginable and, frankly, unbelievable.
• On Dec. 8, 2012, one week after Belcher murdered his girlfriend and took his own life, Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent was charged with intoxication manslaughter after he flipped his car in an accident that killed teammate Jerry Brown in Irving, Texas.
• On Jan. 17, 2013, Bengals offensive tackle Andre Smith was arrested on a charge of carrying a loaded gun at Atlanta's airport.
• On Jan. 22, despite witnessing what happened on his team just a month earlier, then-Cowboys defensive tackle Jay Ratliff was charged with DWI after his pickup truck struck an 18-wheeler in Grapevine, Texas.
• On February 18, 2013, Buccaneers defensive end Da'Quan Bowers was arrested after a .40-caliber handgun was found in his luggage at New York's LaGuardia Airport.
• On May 3, Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington was arrested for assault after an argument with an ex-girlfriend in her Phoenix apartment.
• On May 17, newly signed Jets running back Mike Goodson was arrested in New Jersey on handgun and marijuana possession charges after he passed out in the front seat of a car on a state highway.
• On May 26, Buccaneers safety Cody Grimm was arrested in Leesburg, Va., and charged with public intoxication -- 2½ months after he had been arrested in Christiansburg, Va., on March 10, and charged with public intoxication.
• On June 26, then-Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez was arrested and charged with murder and five weapons counts in the shooting death of Odin Lloyd.
• On Aug. 11, Broncos linebacker Von Miller was arrested in a Denver suburb on a warrant because he failed to appear in court on misdemeanor traffic charges -- at a time the league considering extending his four-game suspension to a one-year suspension or even possibly a lifetime ban.
• On Sept. 20, 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith was arrested for suspicion of DUI before agreeing to go to rehab and then, on Oct. 29, turning himself in on felony weapons charges.
• On Nov. 10, one week before the then-unbeaten Chiefs were to play the Broncos, Kansas City wide receiver Dwayne Bowe was arrested for speeding and marijuana possession.
All this happened in the span of one year. There were plenty of other arrests as well, players charged with a potpourri of assaults, DWIs, drug possession, weapon possession -- a multitude of bads. But a handful of aforementioned events were the headliners, SportsCenter-worthy.
Maybe the league has had other years like this, and it's just that there never has been so much attention on the NFL. But it sure feels like the NFL never has had a 12-month stretch quite like this. Maybe it's just the day and age of social media, in which each civilian can be transformed into a reporter, photographing and videotaping incidents that might have been missed in previous years. Or maybe, just maybe, the league has just experienced the worst year it has had in a long time, if not ever.
At a time when our country celebrates Thanksgiving, the NFL should be thankful this year is almost behind it, while hoping never to have another one like it.
The Schef's specialties
Game of the Week: Saints at Seahawks -- A Monday night battle for what could be the the NFC's top seed.
Upset of the Week: Jacksonville over Cleveland -- Browns not the same team with Brandon Weeden at the helm.
Player of the Week: Bills running back C.J. Spiller -- Coming off a bye, Spiller could have some spring in his step.