Washington Redskins: Is Robert Griffin III Primed For A Blockbuster Season?

By Jason Bailey
Robert Griffin III
Larry French-Getty Images

QB Robert Griffin III dazzled the NFL during his freshman season. He then tried to replicate more of the same during his highly-publicized sophomore season, and left quite an impression. The decorated gunslinger had some kind of a sophomore season, yes — the kind in which he threw nearly as many picks as touchdowns (12), while his all-world speed and elusiveness were nowhere to be found. His electrifying 102.4 passer rating stumbled to a humbling 82.2.

Does the man need a Band-Aid for that smarting ego? It’s a crying shame that Griffin III couldn’t diagnose himself with a real bad case of terminal amnesia. There are no mulligans in football. The best-case scenario for the third-year gunslinger? Walk it off and reload. Get back in the huddle and act like he’s somebody — you have to earn your stripes in the NFL.

As it stands, the third-year pro is staring down the barrel of a make-or-break season with little to no room for error. He is anointed with the paramount responsibility of leading the Redskins’ offense as the team vies for another NFC East division title. Can he deliver? That’s entirely up to him and nobody else.

The decorated signal caller is on his way. The Washington Redskins have stacked its receiving corps with standout wideouts DeSean Jackson and Andre Roberts, all the while retaining Pierre Garcon. The Redskins didn’t stop there. Freshman skipper Jay Gruden also promoted TE coach Sean McVay to offensive coordinator.

McVay endorsed Griffin’s current status, saying there’s no question that the signal caller looks explosive. After seasoned quarterback guru Terry Shea worked extensively with the erstwhile Baylor standout in April, he determined that the third-year passer reminded him of the old RG3, while taking the next step as a pocket passer this offseason.

Gruden also retooled the Redskins’ offensive line, anchoring last season’s glaring pass protection defects with a monstrous splash in free agency by acquiring guard Shawn Lauvao and tackle Morgan Moses. On top of that, he also drafted third-round prospect Spencer Long. The Redskins then cut ties with Will Montgomery, extracting the incompetent center from the offensive line’s depth chart.

It was a commendable personnel maneuver. Montgomery might as well have lined up in the backfield on pass plays — he usually ended up there.

Blossoming into an elite gunslinger in the NFL takes a progression. It’s not exactly an overnight occurrence — just ask gridiron magician Peyton Manning. But after further review, it would seem that Griffin III is, in fact, primed for a blockbuster season.

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