For the first time in four seasons, Robert Griffin III got a taste of what it was like to be a starting quarterback in the NFL once again. Griffin went through plenty of failure and rehab to even get to the point of becoming a reliable No. 2 quarterback, but that's far from what he wants to accomplish in the second stage of his NFL career.
"I want to be a starter again. I'm 30 years old, and quarterbacks are playing into their 40s now," Griffin said on "The Matt Mosley Show" on 1660 ESPN Central Texas. "There's a lot of time left to still go achieve all the dreams and goals I set for myself."
There's still time for Griffin to become a starting quarterback in the NFL again. Griffin started his first game in four years in Week 17 of the 2019 season, after the Baltimore Ravens clinched home-field advantage in the AFC playoffs and decided to rest Lamar Jackson the final week. Griffin finished 11 of 21 and threw for 96 yards with an interception in the Ravens' win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, while also rushing eight times for 50 yards.
Griffin finished the 2019 season 23 of 38 for 225 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions, but his lone start showed he still had the mobility that made him the league's offensive rookie of the year in 2012.
A series of injuries have derailed a once-promising career for Griffin, starting with a torn ACL in 2012 followed by a dislocated left ankle in 2014 and a concussion in 2015 that kept him inactive as the Washington Redskins' third-string quarterback. A shoulder injury in 2016 limited Griffin to five games with the Cleveland Browns, which led to his release and jobless in the 2017 season.
Griffin returned to the NFL with the Ravens in 2018 and suffered a fractured thumb in training camp of 2019, but failed to miss any regular season games. Griffin has one more season as the Ravens backup quarterback before he becomes a free agent, but won't get any starting opportunities in Baltimore unless Jackson goes down with an injury.
In seven NFL seasons, Griffin has a 16-25 record as a starting quarterback and completed 63.1% of his passes for 9,229 yards, 43 touchdowns and 28 interceptions. He hasn't been a regular starter since the final four games of the 2016 season with the Browns, but the 30-year-old Griffin is still hoping that chance comes again.
If Griffin were to earn a starting quarterback job again, his story would trump other quarterback comebacks like Randall Cunningham and Earl Morrall, two players who had career resurgences into their 30s. Griffin should look at those two quarterbacks for inspiration he still can become a productive starter in this league.