ESPN Kirk Cousins will replace Robert Griffin III as the Washington Redskins’ quarterback Sunday when they face the Atlanta Falcons, a high-ranking team official confirmed to ESPN.com.NFL Network had earlier reported that Cousins would start at quarterback. Coach Mike Shanahan had said Monday that if he decided to sit Griffin this week, the quarterback also would stay on the sidelines for the remainder of the season for the last-place Redskins (3-10). Shanahan raised the possibility Monday of benching Griffin for the last three games, citing 24 sacks in the past five games and the desire to keep him healthy for the offseason. A team source on Tuesday had said owner Dan Snyder would not intervene if Shanahan decided to make the switch at quarterback. Shanahan, whose job security has been a topic of widespread scrutiny, said Monday he spoke with Snyder that morning, and that if he does switch quarterbacks, he’d discuss it first with the owner. As for Shanahan’s future with the Redskins, team sources said Tuesday that everything is “status quo.” His status for next season entering last weekend was questionable. It was downgraded to doubtful after an ESPN.com report Sunday detailing his displeasure over the nature of the Griffin-Snyder relationship. Washington was trounced 45-10 by the Kansas City Chiefs later Sunday, a loss which followed a number of stories in recent weeks discussing the nature of Shanahan’s relationship with Griffin as well as that of his son, offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, and Griffin. Sunday’s events led to Snyder contemplating his options regarding Shanahan. One team source described Snyder as bewildered by the original report. And it was clear that Snyder had no intention before this point of firing Shanahan before the end of the season. Shanahan has one year and $7 million left on his contract. The Redskins are 24-37 under Shanahan and clinched their third double-digit loss season in his four years as coach.
I think that this is a smart move for the Washington Redskins (3-10) have had a terrible season, and a big factor (but not the only one) has been quarterback Robert Griffin III struggle to gain confidence as he returns from a knee injury suffered in last season’s playoffs. Griffin showed flashes of his former greatness this season, but he was very tentative about re-injuring that knee, which cost him to lose a lot of accuracy due to not stepping into throws. RGIII also did not extend plays with his scrambling ability or take off running, which were two things that made him so dangerous, because it left him open to a lot oh contact.
Griffin got his repetitions in this season, he gained confidence in his knee as the season wore on, and he should come back more season much more healthy and resembling the way he played in 2012. If Griffin took a shot to his knee which cost him the 2014 season during these final three meaningless games, the franchise, and the whole District of Colombia would be devastated.
There were a lot more wrong with the a Washington Redskins than RGIII this season, they were terrible defensively need to improve the offensive line, and they have been unable to get younger due to a lack of draft picks. They gave up so many draft picks to trade up to select RGIII that 2014 will be the third year in a row that the Washington Redskins have no first round pick in the NFL Draft. The St. Louis Rams get the Redskins first round pick again, which currently would be the second overall pick in the draft, and it’s tough to get better without first round draft picks.
What’s the worst that can happen by playing Kirk Cousins? He plays really well, the Redskins go (3-0), and the St. Louis Rams get a slightly worse first round pick for the Redskins. Maybe Cousins plays so well that he increases his trade value, the Redskins get offered a first or second round draft pick for him, and they regain the ability to improve the team this offseason. Plus RGIII stays healthy, gets a full offseason of work in, and returns in 2014 fully healthy. All upside.