Wednesday on SiriusXM NFL Radio, NFL analyst and former tight end Shannon Sharpe, who played for Mike Shanahan during his time with the Denver Broncos, spoke about the Robert Griffin III fiasco in Washington.
A lot of people don’t know that for the first couple of years that I played for Mike, he and I have a very contentious relationship. Let me start by saying this: It’s not easy to coach for Mike, it’s not easy to coach with Mike, and it’s definitely not easy to play for Mike. He has an expectation level that he expects you to practice great, meet great and play great every single week. He doesn’t buy into the excuse that you got a hurt ankle; he says if you’re out on the field, I expect you to be great.
Sharpe continued to criticize Griffin III’s decision to rehab last offseason with the goal of being ready for Week 1.
To start, he never should’ve started the season. But that’s on him. Because his whole offseason was based on one game. He didn’t look at the big picture. He wanted to race back, and although he said, ‘My injury is different than Adrian Peterson,’ he tried to trump Adrian Peterson. He tried to come back and be the RGIII of old, and he couldn’t do it. All he thought about: I’m all in for Week 1. But what about Weeks 2-17? What are we gonna do about that? Robert Griffin used to run away from defensive back. Robert Griffin can’t get away from defensive tackles now. Now he’s gonna have to change, he’s gonna have to adjust. And I tell people all the time, quarterbacks constantly have to reinvent themselves, whether it’s through age or through injury. Some of them have to reinvent themselves later – Peyton Manning had to reinvent himself late in his career – well Robert Griffin, yours just got bumped up by about 13 years. And if you can’t reinvent yourself, you’re gonna be just a guy.
The blame for the mishandling of Griffin III’s injury and the Redskins’ season isn’t on just one guy though, Sharpe said.
Look, Mike Shanahan isn’t without fault here. The way this mess, the way it’s constructed right now, I’m gonna put 33 1/3 on everybody. Daniel Snyder you get 33 1/3, Mike Shanahan you get 33 1/3, RGIII you get 33 1/3. Now I don’t think Mike’s gonna be back next year. And I don’t wanna get into, ‘Well, he’s doing this to get fired,’ because if you wanna get fired you can go park in the owner’s spot. I think that would speed the process up, as opposed to benching the quarterback.
Sharpe also shared the advice he’d give Griffin III if the two shared a locker room.
I’m gonna say, ‘Griff, you get an opportunity to sit back and reevaluate. Now you’ve tried it your way for a year and a half, a year and three quarters, and you see where it got you. The first thing you have to understand, when things go wrong, be it your fault or not, be it good, bad or indifferent, or not, accept responsibility … Griff, I understand you want your brand. It’s OK to be selfish, as long as your goals, your aspirations don’t supersede that of the team. If being RGIII the brand is more important than leading this team to the Super Bowl, we’re gonna have problems. You’re always gonna find yourself in this situation. Now Mike Shanahan is probably not gonna be back next year, and everybody’s gonna place that at the feet of RGIII. The worst thing that you can have happen; be known as a coach killer. That’s one thing a quarterback does not want to get labeled as … Two years into a career and you got a coach canned. Now it’s on you.’
Movin’ the Chains with Jim Miller, Pat Kirwan and Jason Horowitz airs weekdays at 3 pm ET on SiriusXM NFL Radio, channel 88.
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