Robert Griffin III jokes with head coach Mike Shanahan during pregame warm ups prior to playing the St. Louis Rams Sept. 16.
With each passing week, rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III's legend grows, and what happened in Sunday's victory over the Buccaneers only adds to that legend. On the game's final series that started on Washington's 20-yard line with 1:42 on the clock, RGIII led the offense on a seven-play, 56-yard drive that set up Billy Cundiff's game-winning field goal.
Impressive for any rookie playing in only his fourth game but even more so when you consider this: Griffin pulled it off without being able to communicate with offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. According to the Washington Post, RGIII's headset malfunctioned on that fateful drive, but you wouldn't have known it.
“Every week, we always practice me calling the plays [as if] the headset has gone out. The funny thing is, the headset did go out on that drive,” Griffin said, via the Post's Dave Sheinin. “So it was neat how that practice scenario played out in the game.”
Fans and media were understandably blown away by what Griffin was able to do, but they weren't alone. RGIII's teammates were arguably more impressed.
“That kid is special," cornerback Josh Wilson said according to the Post. "He is the real deal. He’s stepped up, and I’ve never had so much confidence in a two-minute drive. Let’s just leave some time on the clock. It doesn’t matter if they get this field goal or not, we know he’s going to get this ball down there and put us in position to win.”
It's an interesting dynamic. In years past, fans preferred not to dwell on the sorry state of the quarterback situation. Now, not only is it something they embrace, it's a reason for optimism. In fact, the worst thing you can say about Griffin is that he's young. The long line of would-be franchise QBs to precede RGIII would've loved to have such problems.
“You put him in a game-time situation, that critical, game on the line, it makes it a little more, ‘Wow,’” Santana Moss said Monday. “But other than that, as a player you know that that’s what he’s there for …. I’m glad we have a guy that, even though we’re dealing with his youth of him not being here, he doesn’t play like his age or his coming into the league this young. He doesn’t approach the game that way. He approaches the game like he’s been here before.”