Despite expressing his desire to play, RG3 benched, reportedly also will be inactive Sunday
Whatever the reason Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan had for deciding Kirk Cousins would start on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, the decision came without Robert Griffin III’s blessing or support.
To further complicate matters in an already delicate situation, Robert Griffin III has more than likely seen the football field for the last time this season.
Whether or not RG3 is dressed or not, not surprisingly, he’s not thrilled with the decision.
RG3 met with the media for the first time since the decision was handed down, and it’s clear he prefers his benching had not happened.
“I’m sure everybody knows by now that coach decided to shut me down for the rest of the season. We talked, I talked to coach, he talked to me about it. I expressed my desire to play,” Griffin told reporters, according to a Pro Football Talk report. “He explained to me his reasoning. At the end of the day, coach’s decision is what we go with.”
Some have speculated that Shanahan is playing a game of chicken with team owner Dan Snyder in an effort to get canned, but that does little to explain the reports that not only is RG3 not starting on Sunday, he will be inactive for the game.
According to NFL Network’s Jeff Darlington, Rex Grossman will be backing up Kirk Couins on Sunday, not RG3 (via Eye on Football):
Darlington was told by one Redskins player that the “prevention of franchise [quarterback] getting hurt was [the] explanation in [the] team meeting” when Griffin being benched was discussed.
That doesn’t necessarily explain why Griffin’s inactive, though, but it’s about the only way that Shanahan can go with this decision, provided he wants to.
Another player was asked by Darlington if he thought Griffin’s health was the real reason behind the quarterback’s benching and replied, “I believe that’s the best way to sell it.”
What a white-hot mess of a clusterbang. Granted, there is some semblance of logic to sitting RG3 to avoid risk of injury — a notion the quarterback scoffed at last week before he and the team were blown out by the Kansas City Chiefs — Shanahan is either overplaying his hand or seriously trying to get fired. Either way, his mishandling of the quarterback situation certainly appears to be causing a certain level of dissent and disbelief in the locker room, something that likely won’t be tolerated by Snyder and in all likelihood will end up with Shanahan being pink-slipped at season’s end.