RICHMOND — Despite an up-and-down training camp that has revealed plenty of struggles among all three of the Redskins’ quarterbacks, offensive coordinator Sean McVay emphatically insisted Monday that Robert Griffin III is and will be the team’s starter.
“Robert’s our starting quarterback,” McVay said. “He’s done a great job of making good decisions – and so have Colt [McCoy] and Kirk [Cousins], for that matter. We’re really pleased with where we’re at as a quarterback room right now, but Robert’s our starting quarterback.”
Jay Gruden made the same assertion when he was introduced as the Redskins’ new coach in January, and nothing has changed. Griffin and Cousins, entering their third season in the league and with the Redskins, are continuing to adjust to the new wrinkles posed by Gruden’s playbook.
Griffin’s development, in particular, has been under the spotlight as Gruden and McVay try to help him make the transition from a dual-threat quarterback to one who runs only when needed.
“I expect a lot out of myself,” Griffin said. “I know Jay expects a lot out of me. Sean expects a lot out of me. This organization expects a lot out of me. My team expects a lot out of me. That’s something that I’ll always have to deal with. It’s not necessarily patience. It’s just about knowing that greater things are coming, and I’m excited about what the future holds.”
Gruden said after Sunday’s practice that the execution of the two-minute offense “hasn’t been that great,” and that the team would likely continue to work on it each day until the season opener at Houston on Sept. 7.
It moved slightly more crisply on Monday, with Griffin leading the offense on a 12-play touchdown drive from his own 30-yard line with 1:51 remaining. On one play – the second from scrimmage – Griffin threw the ball away after failing to find an open receiver.
Making those types of decisions have been difficult for Griffin, who acknowledged Monday that he hates to throw the ball away primarily for competitive reasons. On the following play, he found wide receiver Santana Moss for a 9-yard gain to convert on third down and keep the drive alive.
“It takes repetition,” Griffin said. “It takes guys being on their stuff, and you know, when you come to training camp, it can be hard going all these straight days, being in the same place, doing the same routine. It gets monotonous, so you have to lock in as a football team – as one of the leaders of the team – and we locked in a lot better today, I felt like, than we did yesterday. That’s a good sign. We’re going to have those days. You just have to make sure they’re not on game day.”