In a situation that gets more awkward by the moment, benched Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III met with the media Wednesday, moments after the man who replaced him, Kirk Cousins, spoke about what it meant to start Sunday against the Falcons.
Griffin, the team's 2012 first-round pick and franchise quarterback, appears to be caught in the middle of a power struggle between coach Mike Shanahan and owner Dan Snyder. While Shanahan has stated publicly that he has RG3's health in mind, the speculation is that Shanahan wants out of Washington and this is how he's decided to go about it.
Griffin reiterated the former Wednesday: "Coach decided to shut me down for the rest of the season," he said. "I expressed my desire to play."
By the way, if Shanahan truly was concerned with Griffin's well being, why didn't he bench him in last January's playoff game against the Seahawks after Griffin reaggravated a knee injury and spent the second half limping around the field? Or more recently, why did Shanny let RG3 play in Week 1 against the Eagles when he was clearly less than 100 percent?
Griffin was asked about the possibility that Shanahan had ulterior motives.
RG3 on if he believes he's being shut down to protect his health: I just have to listen to the coaches. Have to "respect authority."— Grant Paulsen (@granthpaulsen) December 11, 2013
"[Shanahan] just wanted to make sure that I got to the offseason free of injury so that I can have a good offseason," Griffin continued. ... "I'm going to take what coach has decided and roll with it and just try to find ways to help this team win."
That includes supporting Cousins.
"He'll do a good job," RG3 said. "I'll be there for him every step of the way," although he acknowledged that the benching has been "tough."
"God's testing me," he said. "I still feel blessed to be in the NFL, be with the guys in that locker room."
We wouldn't be surprised if Snyder sticks with Shanahan for the next three weeks before sending him on his way if for no other reason than Shanahan might want to get fired sooner than that. Put another way: RG3 remains the Redskins' future while we're guessing Shanahan will now have until late December to pack up his two notebooks and that iPad before he's kindly asked to get the hell out of Redskins Park and never come back.