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Griffin vows: ‘We’ll figure it out’

Sep 15, 2013, 5:45 PM EDT

As Yogi Berra once said, it was like déjà vu all over again.

Just like last Monday against the Eagles, Robert Griffin III had a nice game if all you did was look at his final stat line. He was 26 for 40 for 320 yards and 3 touchdowns, a passer rating of 104.2. But once again the numbers were empty as the Redskins got way behind early and piled up yards in extended garbage time.

The Redskins fell to 0-2 as they lost to the Packers 38-20 in another game that was not as close as the final score would indicate. The Eagles led 33-7 before the Redskins were able to get on the board.

After the game Griffin again waved off concerns about his surgically repaired right knee and vowed to make things better.

“We’ll make it happen,” he said. “We’ll figure it out, we’ll figure out what’s missing right now and we’ll make it happen.”

Griffin has been the team’s leader almost from the moment he set foot in the Redskins’ locker room last year. By all accounts he has been the encouraging/enthusiastic type of leader. But, at the request of some teammates, that may change.

“If those guys want me to go out there and be the stern leader then I can do that,” he said. “I got some of that from some of my teammates on the sideline asking me to do some more things. Not necessarily change who I am as a person but if they want me to be hard on them, I’ll be hard on them.”

Whether it was a change of leadership style or something else, Griffin said that the losing would stop. “We’ll be better, period,” he said. “We’ll make it happen. We’ll figure it out, we’ll figure out what’s missing right now and we’ll make it happen.”

Griffin was asked what type of leadership changes he would make.

“I just not, you know, I’m not an a-hole. I believe in positive reinforcement,” he said. “If something happens, I know he’ll make it up the next time he gets that chance. And that’s just the way I lead. If they want me to do that, you know, I’m fine with doing that . . . If that’s what we need to get over this hump, to move forward and start winning games I’m definitely going to do it.”

If Griffin is successful in getting the offense turned around, perhaps he or someone else can do something to help the Redskins’ defense. The loss certainly wasn’t all Griffin’s side of the ball.

Aaron Rodgers has a field day for the Packers, completing 34 of 42 passes for 480 yards and four touchdowns. Even if Griffin had been razor sharp all day the Redskins would have had trouble winning this one.

Through two games the Redskins have allowed 1,023 yards of total offense. In NFL history, only the 1967 Atlanta Falcons (1,025) have allowed more through two games.

At halftime it was 24-0 and Griffin was six for 13 for 107 yards with an interception that comes to a passer rating of 42.8.

At that point the Redskins were 0-5 on third down. They failed on two more in the second half before the Packers scored to make it 31-0.

The Redskins finally converted a third down with 4:15 left in the third quarter. It came on a third-down touchdown pass to Pierre Garçon that covered six yards.

Griffin would go on to throw two more touchdown passes, one of three yards to Jordan Reed and another one to Santana Moss that covered six yards. But it was the proverbial too little, too late.

Griffin ran just four times for one yard. A year ago the dynamic threat of his legs helped the whole offense click. Many are wondering if there are reasons beyond the knee injury that Griffin is not running with the ball.

“If teams are going to give us the QB run we’ll take it,” he said. “If they’re not we can’t just run those plays.”

“I’m not just going to run to show people that I’m back. I think that’s stupid.”

In the end, Griffin said that the solution is to keep on fighting.

“You can’t just totally jump ship,” he said. “It’s not that time and I don’t think this team will ever do that.”

  1. internetcareer - Sep 16, 2013 at 12:40 AM

    I guess we can expect another week of softball questions from Rich Tandler. Nobody seems to want to ask the OBVIOUS questions in Washington. Jim Haslett has never produced a winning defense. His defenses are always ranks in the 20’s and sometimes in the 30’s in pass defense. When will a real reporter get some rocks and ask Shanahan face to face: “why is Jim Haslett still the defensive coordinator after failing and failing repeatedly” or how about this one: “WHY DOES HASLETT TELL HIS DB’s to play 10 yards off receivers and give them first downs on 3rd and 7?” Such OBVIOUS questions but instead look for softball questions like “Hey coach, how good does it make you feel that Robert is able to stay healthy”.

    • Rich Tandler - Sep 16, 2013 at 4:51 AM

      Tell you what, tough guy. I’ll continue to do my job as I see fit and you can choose to read or not. You may continue your career as amateur NFL coach and/or sportswriter and see how successful you are.

      • httrsince1978 - Sep 16, 2013 at 10:53 AM

        You tell him, Rich. I read everything you write, including your tweets, and your knowledge of the team and what is taking place there is second to none. Keep up the good work!

      • clp5150clp5150 - Sep 16, 2013 at 11:02 AM

        Rich – love your site. Don’t worry about that jackass. He’s mad about the loss, as we all are, and can’t find anyone to blame. He’s an “armchair” critic.

        • clp5150 - Sep 16, 2013 at 11:04 AM

          And Wow, what happened to my user name…that’s better.

    • iudoin - Sep 16, 2013 at 9:10 PM

      Agreed. Nothing worse than schmoozing reporters trying to be buds with players and coaches. Im waiting for one of the panzie Washington area reporters to go for the jugular and get to business instead of the slow dance of questions. Im still laughing at “Tell you what tough guy” it hit home with him. lol.

      • Rich Tandler - Sep 16, 2013 at 9:13 PM

        Well, maybe other than fans who have no idea of what the job entails. Hey, how about if you invite me into your job and I’ll critique what you do?

        • iudoin - Sep 16, 2013 at 9:42 PM

          Your pretty good though Rich, keep up the good work.

  2. internetcareer - Sep 16, 2013 at 12:59 AM

    Griffin’s problem is not his running. The problem is he targets his first read and doesn’t go through his progressions and doesn’t know how to move in the pocket like Russell Wilson and Tony Romo. He can run fast but he cannot yet MOVE in the pocket and buy time while continuing to go through his reads. The young man has a long long way to go if he is going to develop as just a pure passer. Fine. Don’t run. But you are going to lose a lot of games while you develop Robert.

    • marc - Sep 16, 2013 at 10:11 AM

      Agree to an extent but the team isnt developing him as a pocket passer they are being too careful with his knee and not trusting that he is in fact fully healed therefore limiting our offense to predetermined read options and drop backs he proved last year he can work with in the pocket even with the sprained knee…but 8 months of rehab and no preseason work then get thrown into a real game and you expect his pocket awareness to be where it was last year….as far as his reads which go hand in hand with pocket work as he gets more comfortable with his knee and starts to trust it his pocket awareness will improve….the main problem is him and coaches not trusting his knee which is affecting every aspect of his game…case and point….his release point of his throws….hes throwing off the front foot and not planting fully…hes got to work through it and trust him self to be “RG3” again the dynamic one and he shall improve greatly watch him practice and warm up and see him doing his footwork right but hes not translating it to the game because imo hes not trusting himself or his knee just give hime time he will be fine

      • httrsince1978 - Sep 16, 2013 at 10:51 AM

        It’d be a lot easier to read if you spread your periods out a little instead of bunching them all up together where they don’t belong.

        • marc - Sep 16, 2013 at 3:38 PM

          Really dude? You worried about the periods if you cant read that then thats your problem try speaking on the point of my post not the periods….thanks buddy

    • jrh0 - Sep 18, 2013 at 11:34 AM

      What pocket? We don’t have an Oline built for protecting a traditional pocket. We have an Oline that works with last year’s offense. Without the threat of the run, D’s can just kill us with a pass rush that guys the likes of Polumbus just aren’t going to stop. Without our full playbook this personnel group is put at a severe disadvantage.

  3. Sam. Almond - Sep 16, 2013 at 8:28 PM

    No improvement on defense. I thought we were going to fix that this yr.
    Haslett is problem.

  4. Michael - Sep 16, 2013 at 8:52 PM

    Rich, I very much agree with a lot of your analysis of the Redskins and enjoy this site. However, I do think it is important to ask the question, “Is Jim Haslett the best option for the team as a defensive coordinator in the long run?” It does not appear that the defense has improved (possibly worse) since he has been given the time to adapt and adjust personnel over the last few years. I would like to known your thoughts.

    • Rich Tandler - Sep 16, 2013 at 8:55 PM

      I’m not convinced that a different DC would do a better job with the talent that he has had. By the way, defenses all around the NFL stink. It’s an offensive league.

      • Josh - Sep 16, 2013 at 10:18 PM

        Not all the defenses suck just majority but its hard to have a great defense like Seattle or San Fran. It’s no longer a ground and pound league it’s pretty obvious that everyone wants to put the ball in the air so if u don’t have that true lock down corner u could be in trouble. But honestly though I believe Washington could benefit from a 4-3 defense with orakpo at RE and Kerrigan at LE and Cofield and Bowen at DT then put London at MLB and Riley as a strong side backer but that could leave a weakness for the weak side backer cause idk who could fill that role. But imma trust Jim’s judgment with what he should do with the talent he’s got cause he’s in the NFL and I’ve only coached one powder puff game. Wonder who knows more? lol but forreal they’ll figure out dont stop believing in them cause they’re starting off slow shit happens 14 more games to go! HTTR

      • Michael - Sep 16, 2013 at 10:51 PM

        You are correct, it is an offensive league and the current rules in the NFL work in favor of the offensive players. That being said, it does appear that the Redskins have gotten worse defensively and as far as talent is concerned, wouldn’t Haslett be somewhat at fault (M. Shanahan and B. Allen as well) as he is supposed to be one of the main people evaluating talent? It is understandable that the Redskins would not be the most talented on defense given the cap penalty and the trading away of draft picks for RG3 (not blaming RG3); however, it seems like there are a lot of excuses for Haslett not putting together a competitive defense, and not a lot of positives from what he has done. Now as far as it being “an offensive league”, it kind of sounds like you are putting a lot of blame on the Redskins offense for the losses. While I agree that the offense is at least part of the problem, an offense shouldn’t have to put up 40+ points in a game to win, and that is what it seems like currently for the Redskins. I am not trying to put all of the blame on Haslett (when it is all said and done it is Shanahan’s team) as he is not the ultimate decision maker, but I do question the direction he has taken the defense (3-4 vs 4-3) and the inabilty of the defense to make open field tackles (talking is a part of defense).

        • clp5150 - Sep 17, 2013 at 8:42 AM


          I definitely share your views. We went from a top 10 defense a few years ago and just have never made it back. I think the players just don’t match the scheme. There have been bright spots and some flashes of greatness, but never able to reach the next level. How can it get worse when we got people like Orakpo back?

        • Michael - Sep 17, 2013 at 1:39 PM

          When I said that it feels like they are getting worse, I meant year over year, since Haslett arrived. However, I imagine it could get worse-even with someone like Orakbo- if the secondary can’t handle passing situations as the season goes on. Haslett may have to sacrifice a pass rush or run defense to help with the coverage for receivers, tight ends, and running backs on screen plays and other dump off passing plays. That being said, perhaps there will be some improvement with the return of R. Jackson, J. Jenkins, and A. Carriker (not so sure about is return). When they return, the Redskins could see a better rush/run defense upfront and better rotations to keep players fresh as the game goes on. This could help the secondary, but they still need to make tackles in order to be a good defense. I would give Haslett at least to the middle of the season, if not the whole season. This way you can see if things improve when players return from suspension and as the rookies develop (developmentally you may want to keep Haslett the whole season to prevent the rookies from having to take steps backwards).

  5. mike - Sep 17, 2013 at 7:57 PM

    Anything would be better than reading the trash your producing! He is right stop talking about RG3 and start talking about how bad the D is and why! Archives

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