It was with great discomfort that I watched Robert Griffin III limp his way through the Redskins – Seahawks game at FedEx Field on Sunday night. The Washington Redskins quarterback had injured the same knee earlier in the season (and in college) and had obviously aggravated it during the first quarter of the game. As the clock ticked down, I was shocked every time Griffin came off the field…only to return immediately.
Yes, it was a playoff game. But RGIII was obviously hurt. And he wasn’t helping his team at that point either. And the Redskins had a competent backup quarterback in Kirk Cousins. Competent and healthy.
As discomfort turned to anger in the fourth quarter, I fired off the following tweet at 6:51 PM:
Alright…get Griffin out of there. Before he hurts his team and hurts himself more. Come on, Shanahan!
— Pigskin ‘N Pearls™ (@PigskinNPearls) January 6, 2013
At 7:08 I followed it up with this one:
See? Damn it…that pisses me off. Shanahan should be ashamed of himself! Disgusting. #Redskins
— Pigskin ‘N Pearls™ (@PigskinNPearls) January 7, 2013
It was a matter of seventeen minutes. That’s all the time it took for RGIII to go from hopping to hobbled. And the fans were hopping mad. #RGKnee was trending on Twitter immediately. And the Redskins did themselves no favors with the conflicting stories between Head Coach Mike Shanahan and Dr. James Andrews, the renowned knee expert who is treating Griffin.
We could go back and forth placing blame and pointing fingers, but that’s already been done. Here’s what we do know…Dr. Andrews released the following statement on Wednesday:
“Robert Griffin III had successful knee surgery early this morning. He had a direct repair of his LCL and a re-do of his previous ACL reconstruction. We expect a full recovery and it is everybody’s hope and belief that due to Robert’s high motivation, he will be ready for the 2013 season.”
We will likely never know exactly how or when the injury was sustained. Whether the turf was to blame or the impact of the game. And if the doctor or the team know, good luck getting it out of them. But this was not the rookie quarterback’s only controversial injury this season. RGIII suffered a concussion during week five that went unreported by the team. They were later fined $20,000 for it.
If the NFL is going to put an emphasis on player safety, the Washington Redskins have now raised enough red flags to warrant an investigation into its reporting and handling of injured players (and specifically injuries to Griffin; their top draft pick, starting quarterback, and the future of their team).
On a side note…am I the only one who wants to know what happens in that little red shed on the Redskins’ sideline? Or, maybe I don’t.
But if the NFL does investigate…that’s probably a good place to start.