The anticipation for Robert Griffin's second NFL season has been ridiculous yet understandable.
As a rookie, Griffin led the Redskins to their first NFC East title in 13 years, thanks to a seven-game winning streak that was capped with a win against the Cowboys. There were injuries along the way with heaps of second-guessing on whether the team took unnecessary gambles after his knee gave out on him in the playoff game against Seattle.
And that was just the on-the-field stuff.
The intrigue has continued during training camp as Griffin prepares to be ready for Week 1 despite having offseason surgery to repair both his LCL and ACL. And Griffin's style of play and flair for the dramatic only add more wrinkles to the debate.
Or as GQ's Brendan Vaughn puts it about Griffin in an in-depth feature in the magazine's September issue ...
This leads to the debate of how much the Redskins should allow Griffin to run. Griffin's dad, Robert Griffin II, says he won't tell coach Mike Shanahan how to do his job. But the elder Griffin definitely has strong thoughts on the topic.
"You tell a kid that you want him to be there for fourteen years, guess what?" Griffin II says to GQ. "Historical data will tell you that the more he runs, the more subject he is to career injury. You name one quarterback out there that would rather run the football than throw the football and I’ll show you a loser."
This leaves RGIII in a bit of an awkward situation having to navigate through his father's commentary and Shanahan's approach.
"He's not just a dad, he is my coach," he tells GQ. "My dad is my coach, okay? He's coached me in basketball, track, football, everything. So even though I give credit where credit is due to the coaches who have helped me through the years, my dad has been my coach. So when he says, 'Hey, my son can throw,' he knows that. That's not just him saying that as some father who knows nothing about football. That's what he’s supposed to say. He doesn’t want me running when there are 260-pound guys trying to tackle me.
"That's just his view, and that's why I can't just say, 'Dad, don't say that.' I can say, 'Dad, I understand why you said that. You know, maybe you don’t need to talk to the media anymore,' but I'm also not going to throw my dad under the bus to the media just because someone wants me to do that. I would never do that. So I understand why my dad said it, and I think Coach [Shanahan] understands why my dad said it, and you just move on from it."
There was plenty of off-the-field controversy last season, notably the comments for ESPN First Take commentator Rob Parker that questioned Griffin's "blackness.” It ultimately led to Parker being fired at ESPN.
“There’s some wrong is what he said, but there's some wrong in him losing his job as well," Griffin says. "And I don't want people to think that I, you know, that I'm trying to stick it to Rob Parker, or that I'm happy he lost his job. But I was very unhappy with the things he said. I mean, why did he say that?"
And as one of Baylor's most prominent alums, Griffin was asked for reaction when the school's basketball star Brittney Griner confirmed that she was gay in Sports Illustrated in April.
"I was lost when they said, 'Brittney Griner came out today,'" Griffin tells GQ. "I know Brittney. I'm close to Brittney. Griner was never in. Everyone knew that."
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