PALM BEACH, Fla. | Houston Texans coach Gary Kubiak knows the Washington Redskins’ offense as well as anyone outside the Redskins’ organization. He was coach Mike Shanahan’s offensive coordinator in Denver, and he was offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan’s head coach in Houston. And considering Kubiak has watched Baylor’s Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Robert Griffin close up in Texas, he has a good feel for how productive Griffin could be in Washington.
“Mike likes to run the ball – everything starts with the run – and likes to move his quarterback,” Kubiak said at the AFC coaches’ breakfast here Tuesday. “I don’t know that I’ve seen one move like this guy in a while. He’s very smart. This guy is going to fit perfect with what they want to do – if they take him, of course.”
Kubiak has seen Griffin play several times and said he closely followed Griffin’s college career. He expects Mike and Kyle to tweak their offense to suit Griffin’s athleticism, similarly to how he and Mike adjusted when quarterback Jake Plummer joined the Broncos in 2003. That could mean adding elements of the zone-read running game in which Griffin excelled at Baylor.
“I worked for Mike all those years, and whatever we have, we’re going to find a way to make him successful,” Kubiak said. “Mike is very capable of being flexible and doing what a player does best. I’m sure if he ends up taking him, he’s going to study that portion of the offense he has run.”
With Plummer under center, Shanahan and Kubiak emphasized misdirection and having Plummer throw from various points behind the line of scrimmage more than usual. Plummer threw for only 2,182 yards in 11 games during his first season in Denver. That increased to 4,089 yards, 27 touchdowns and 20 interceptions in a full 2004 campaign. He made the Pro Bowl in 2005.
“We probably moved Jake more than we’ve moved any quarterback in football,” Kubiak said. “We actually isolated some of the things we did in dropback. We didn’t want to drop back much, and we booted probably more than I ever have in my career. He did it damn well.”
Whether the Redskins draft Griffin or Andrew Luck, it’s important for him to learn the concept behind the bootlegs and keepers, Kubiak said, and Griffin appears to be the ideal candidate.
“This kid sure looks like he can do it, Kubiak said.