I’m not sure anymore what the appropriate adjectives are for what’s going down in Washington, though I’m still siding with the range that falls in line with selfish, confusing, reckless, and destructive. After a day to absorb the goings on around the good ship Snyder and to hear the various press conference babbling, there are still opposing and clashing thoughts everywhere, and there’s no way anything Mike Shanahan is doing will lead to happy returns upon his inevitable exit.
Let’s pretend for a moment that we believe the primary message in his nearly half hour press conference diatribe yesterday, and that Robert Griffin III is being benched solely to protect his health. Where was that concern, say, two months ago, or even beyond that? Though he’s improved lately, it’s been clear to even the most casual eye that Griffin isn’t at all the Griffin we saw in 2012, and expecting him to be was always foolish. Ignoring that for 13 games and then using it at your convenience speaks to a far larger motive at play.
Following the aforementioned day of sober reflection, that’s what bothers me the most here. Despite what John Madden says, the act of shutting a reasonably healthy player down isn’t unorthodox. If the Packers were out of contention there’s little doubt in my mind that Aaron Rodgers would have been given a more permanent seat, and although he’s out of his walking boot and says he’s fine, few would begrudge the Vikings for a similar move with Adrian Peterson. But with Griffin, there’s been over three months of ignorance.
Then there’s the lost snaps and development time for Griffin, and the very real possibility that if Kirk Cousins plays well, the Shanahans will leave Washington with a quarterback kerfuffle of sorts, though all involved still say Griffin is the starter, and there’s far too much invested in him through draft picks for any other future outcome. The ingredients for a quarterback death fight are aligned, though, and the potential for one in the never silent court of public opinion is plenty distracting.
But enough about that. Soon the offseason of Griffin will be upon us, and this dumpster fire will overtake our lives. I want to deal with the here and the now, and the possibility that as you prepare for fantasy football semi-final matchups which begin tonight, Cousins could be your hero and/or dark knight.
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