RG3: Compare me to Aaron Rodgers

Robert GriffinGiven the precocious play of Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, which mirrors the precocious play of Panthers quarterback Cam Newton a year ago, the comparisons are natural this week since they play each other.

But setting aside the lazy and frankly insulting implication that they’re similar, based on one obvious factor (not Heisman Trophies), Griffin said he’s aiming a little higher.

“I’d rather be compared to an Aaron Rodgers or a guy like that,” Griffin said, via Rich Campbell of the Washington Times, “someone who has won Super Bowls.”

While it’s easy to perceive that as a slam on Newton, it’s more about Griffin’s own goals. He’s exceeded every expectation this season, but the struggles of Newton make him mindful that he needs to keep working.

Newton called the season “humbling,” and Griffin said he doesn’t want to have the same thing happen.

“You try to appreciate everything and try not to weigh too much on your personal success so that you don’t have to be humbled,” Griffin said. “I don’t want to ever need to be humbled because I always appreciate things and make sure I continue to forward and try to do better.” Read more…

Violating injury report will cost teams draft picks

Mario WilliamsWith thee teams being fined $20,000 each in recent weeks for failing to disclose injuries in compliance with league rules, the penalty for the first offense isn’t much more than, given the value of NFL franchises, a parking ticket.

If teams become repeat offenders, however, the price will go up.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello tells PFT that, if the Bills (as to defensive end Mario Williams), Redskins (as to quarterback Robert Griffin III), or Ravens (as to safety Ed Reed) commit further violations, the fines will increase.  Aiello also didn’t rule out the possibility of draft picks being stripped.

Aiello called it “unlikely,” but “multiple offenses of a very serious nature” could result in a team losing draft picks.

In the end, only the threat of lost draft picks will prompt teams to completely comply with the rules.  Fines will be viewed simply as a cost of doing business the way the teams want to do business — especially when the January 2012 comments from former Saints defensive coordinator Greg Williams make clear the fact that teams will target injured players for further injury. Read more…

NFL to investigate RG3’s injury

Robert Griffin III went to the locker room during Sunday’s 24-17 loss to the Atlanta Falcons to take concussion tests. So how did the Washington Redskins announce his injury?

They officially said their rookie quarterback was “shaken up” and questionable to return to the game. They never updated his status. That characterization could land the Redskins in hot water.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello confirmed to NFL.com and NFL Network that the league is looking into if the Redskins followed league rules that require teams be accurate and timely in reporting injury information.
We also have an issue with how Redskins coach Mike Shanahan characterized Griffin’s injury after the game.
“When he really wasn’t sure what quarter it was, what score it was, we knew he had a mild concussion, at least according to the doctors,” Shanahan said. “(He) feels good right now, a lot better right now. But that was the situation why he didn’t go back into the game.” Read more…

Did the Rams play dirty against the Redskins?

Robert GriffinIf you ask James Laurinaitis, Jo-Lonn Dunbar, or Cortland Finnegan odds are they will say they were just playing football.

According to the Redskins quarterback these players were playing “unprofessional” and “dirty.”

“I don’t want to tip-toe the lines of anything that’s happened with bounties or anything like that, but they were definitely going after me,” Griffin told reporters. “They made it a point, obviously, all week to hit me. Some of the shots were cheap of that nature.”

Griffin said that when he played in St. Louis on Sunday, he thought the Rams were going far beyond what’s acceptable on a football field, not just playing physical football but playing dirty football.

“They were doing a lot of dirty things,” Griffin said. “I still think they have an extremely good team. That doesn’t take anything away from them. But the game was unprofessional. Who am I to talk? I’ve barely been a pro for very long, but from what I experienced against the Saints to that game, it was definitely unprofessional, and it does need to be cleaned up.”
Griffin said the Rams were telling him they were going to target him, and he said he’s fine with that. But he thought they were targeting him with shots that should have drawn penalty flags.
“They made it a point, obviously all week, to hit me,” he said. “Some of the shots were cheap and of that nature. It’s nothing I could control.
“Teams are going to try to hit me because they don’t think I can take a hit. I think I proved that over my career that I can, so it’s football. I remember one play, after the play, the guy said: ‘We’re going to hit you every play.’ I said, ‘Isn’t this football?’ It’s nothing that I’m not used to. It was extremely weird the way they went about it, though.” Read more…

Top first-year starting quarterbacks in 2012

Where do Andrew Luck and RGIII Rank on My Top 1st Year Quarterbacks?

Aaron Rodgers? Tom Brady? Drew Brees? Who cares about them? We know what we have in them, but if you’re like me, you care about the future.  With potentially 10 starting quarterbacks coming out of the past two draft classes, and now with six as new starters this year, who will do the best this year.  I know that’s a burning question to all of my dozen loyal readers, but you came to the right place.

1. Jake Locker – Tennessee Titans.  Locker was named the starting quarterback of the Titans earlier in the week, taking over for incumbent 37 year-old Matt Hasselbeck.  Locker has shown flashes of big play ability with his strong-arm and his legs, but accuracy has been his main problem.  After mostly sitting for a year, it is Locker’s time to show if he was worth of the #8 pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.  What he does have going for him, other than said arm and legs, is a strong receiver corp highlighted by the troubled Kenny Britt — who will serve a short suspension and is coming back from knee injury — 1st round pick and RGIII’s #1 target at Baylor, Kendall Wright, and an up-and-down tight end in Jared Cook.  If Chris Johnson can rebound off a terrible 2011, Locker will have weapons all around him in a weak division that plays the Jaguars and Colts twice each.

2. Robert Griffin III – Washington Redskins.  Known to many by RGIII, the #2 pick in this years draft, he has a lot of talent around him and a playoff caliber defense to help him through his rookie struggles.  Last year’s Heisman winner, now has Mike Shanahan, former coach of Hall-of-Famer John Elway, to guide him through his career, and upgrades at wide receiver with the signing of the speedy Pierre Garcon, the reliable Joshua Morgan (former 49er) and an improving Fred Davis at tight end.  You can’t forget that in Shanahan’s offense he could put me at running back and I could gain 1,000 yards — a solid run game is huge for any young starting quarterback. The only reason I don’t have RGIII as my top 1st year starter?  The schedule.  The NFC East goes three deep, maybe four depending on how good RGIII really is, and having to play the defending Super Bowl Champion New York Giants, the Dallas Cowboys, and the Philadelphia Eagles six times a year makes this division one of the deepest, if not the deepest, in the NFL. Read more…

10 Fantasy Football rookies to consider drafting

The question of whether to steal precious picks away from more established players on draft day arises every year. They might have been college standouts but how will they perform on a professional level? Will they receive enough playing time? Will they live up to their expectations and in some cases, their hype? I don’t suggest that you base your team around them, but certainly there are several, that you may consider grabbing in the mid to later rounds.

1. Trent Richardson– RB-Browns- We begin with the obligatory and prohibitive favorite to be the first rookie off the boards in your draft. The Browns made Richardson their third overall pick for a reason. They needed a boost in their lackluster offense and this beast of a back has scouts saying that he is the best back to come out of college since Adrian Peterson! Trent will be the Browns’ every-down back and we think he should be the 10th to 15th RB selected in drafts. Barring injury, he will be a top-tier back by season’s end.

2. Doug Martin-RB-Buccaneers- Some scouts have compared the Boise State three-down back to Ray Rice, which is quite a compliment in and of itself! The Bucs O Line has improved given the signing of All-Pro guard Carl Nicks and because of LeGarrette Blount’s ineffectiveness last season, Martin is the overwhelming favorite to become the Bucs starter this year. Remember the Bucs traded up to land Martin in the first round so we can’t see them yielding the starting slot to Blount. We think he’ll be the 15-20th back selected in most drafts.

3. Robert Griffin III-QB-Redskins- Although I rarely, if ever draft a rookie QB, I did so last year when I corralled Cam Newton on a hunch for my QB2 slot. And that’s what you may want to consider doing with RGIII. He has a great arm and like Newton, will keep the ball often and therefore should put up some decent fantasy numbers for a rookie. With good protection we can see him scamper in for several TDs if passing options are limited in the Red Zone.  Clearly one to consider. Read more here…

 

Top offensive NFC rookie prospects for 2012

The NFC is home to some of the NFL’s most explosive offenses, including the Packers and Saints. With the league being so geared towards passing attacks, it’s no surprise that the teams drafting early looked to quarterbacks and wide receivers to try to narrow the gap between their teams and the established offenses in the conference. Two of the top prospects were taken in the first five overall picks, and it didn’t take long for the third to fall off the draft board, either.

1. Robert Griffin III, Redskins QB
There were no surprises here, as Washington gave up a king’s ransom to move up to number two and draft either RG3 or Andrew Luck. With Luck off the board, the Redskins were more than happy to take RG3 and make him their QB of the future. In an organization that has run through a laundry list of quarterbacks in recent years, Redskins fans are confident that their team has finally solved that part of the equation.

As far as ability goes, there are few questions about what Griffin can do. The Heisman winner has an NFL arm and pairs that with the mobility to evade nearly any NFL defender. He will have to adjust to playing in an NFL-style offense, but many recognize that Griffin is an intelligent player who should be able to adapt over time. Read more here…

Griffin is blowing the Redskins away with his arm strength

Robert Griffin III Pic

Robert Griffin III may be known to many for his elusive skills to avoid a rush inside the pocket, but for the Washington Redskins they are blown away by his arm strength.
The Washington Redskins have held nine days of offseason practice so far — a three-day rookie camp and six OTAs — so they’ve gotten a chance to formulate early impressions of rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III. While Griffin has a reputation is some circles as a running quarterback, Les Carpenter of Yahoo! Sports suggests it is instead Griffin’s arm strength generating the most buzz around club headquarters.
Per Carpenter, members of the Redskins’ organization have nicknamed Griffin’s arm strength, simply, “The Arm.”
“It’s more of running to your left and flicking your wrist and throwing the ball 70 yards,” described backup quarterback Rex Grossman, comparing Griffin’s arm action to Michael Vick’s. “His arm almost comes off like a whip.”
Redskins tight end Logan Paulsen says Griffin’s throws are made on a beeline because they “come so hard they don’t have time to rise or fall.” Read more here…