A year ago, Robert Griffin III was thought to be part of the solution. Even when the Redskins were 3-6, it had little to do with the rookie quarterback, who most people considered to be every bit as good as Andrew Luck. Now, as Luck continues to make his case for one of the league's best young passers, RG3 finds himself the target of criticism.
Against the Eagles Sunday, Griffin had 26 first-half passing yards, and completed fewer than 50 percent of his throws for the game. With 35 seconds to go and the Redskins trailing by eight, he heaved this off-balance arm punt into the back of the end zone with predictable results:
Afterwards, Griffin hinted that the Eagles knew what plays the Redskins were running, and that the "hope and a prayer" interception to end the game was because wide receivers couldn't get open. Coach Mike Shanahan refuted the former and veteran wide receiver Santana Moss addressed the latter Tuesday in a radio interview.
“At the end of the day, I was seen with the ball in my hand last. As a quarterback I'm saying [that] if it didn't get done then I'm going to let you know it was me,” Moss said on the Lavar and Dukes Show on 106.7 The Fan, after being apprised of Griffin's remarks.
What RG3 actually said was something much different than that.
“We had a certain concept we were running, and nobody got open,” he said after the game. “So I was backing up, and in a situation where if you get a sack there it ends the game, trying to throw the ball out of the back of the end zone. Didn't get to where I wanted it to go. Obviously I was on my heels, and it's something I can definitely learn from."
Moss also defended Shanahan, who most media folks consider to be on the hot seat:
“To be honest with you, [Shanahan's] far from [having] lost us,” the wide receiver said. “I mean we're nowhere near, you know, what he says, we listen loud and clear. And like I said before, I've said this numerous times. When it comes down to coaching the team, I think he's one of the best that's done it. I've been around a lot of coaches and he prepares us well.”
Moss, who thought Pierre Garcon was wrong to publicly criticize the passing game last month, added that he'd rather not have to answer questions about something his teammates may or may not have said.
“I don't need to be going back and forth in the media about who didn't do this and who didn't do what. At the end of the day, I was seen with the ball in my hand last, as a quarterback I'm saying, and if it didn't get done then I'm going to let you know it was me. Whether it was me or not. It was me. And I'm going to get better. And we're going to get better together.”
If the Redskins don't get better -- and they've given little reason to think they will -- we'll continue to talk about RG3, Shanahan, their relationship and what it means for this team's future.