- The Washington Times - Friday, August 21, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Here is the problem for Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III when he comes out and says what he did in an interview with WJLA-Ch. 7 earlier this week.

“I don’t feel like I have to come out here and show anybody anything or why I’m better than this guy or better than that guy,” Griffin said then. “It’s more about going out and affirming that for me, I go out and I play, I know I’m the best quarterback on this team.”

Then they actually play a game. Not even a real game. A pretend game, a preseason game. You go 2-for-5 for eight yards, with three sacks like Griffin did, ending with a mysterious fall under pressure that led to a fumble and then a concussion while he was on the ground

Then one of the other guys on that team who is not the best quarterback goes out and leads the offense down the field for two touchdowns, as Colt McCoy, who went 5-for-6 for 80 yards, with 17 yards rushing, did Thursday night against the Detroit Lions before a sparse, wet, numb, hometown (we assume) crowd at FedEx Field in a 21-17 victory.

This follows a performance the week before by the other guy on that team who is also not the best quarterback — Kirk Cousins, who completed 12 of 14 passes for 154 yards and ran for one touchdown against the Cleveland Browns. Cousins followed that up Thursday night by completing eight of 12 passes for 91 yards and a touchdown.

Yet it is clear it wouldn’t matter if Griffin went 0-for-20 with five sacks in any of these preseason games, and McCoy and Cousins played like the second coming of Johnny Unitas. If healthy, Griffin will remain the starting quarterback.

“I would imagine, depending on how long he is out, that he is still going to be our starter,” Redskins coach Jay Gruden said after the game.

That is hard to believe.

The Redskins have handed the starting quarterback job to the one who so far has looked the worst of the three in two preseason games.

Griffin’s appearance on the field against Detroit was a category five disaster. He was pummeled by the Lions pass rush, with no help from his new offensive line (without Trent Williams) created by the latest guru to join the Redskins, offensive line coach Bill Callahan.

But when Griffin wasn’t a tackling dummy, he looked awkward and ineffective and not even like the best quarterback in the stands, let alone on the Redskins.

We’re beyond hollow declarations now.

Griffin’s performances so far are a repeat of his preseason struggles last year, which followed him into the regular season, when was benched in favor of McCoy — one of those other quarterbacks that he is better than on the roster.

If Griffin is still standing when the Redskins open the season on Sept. 13 at FedEx Field against the Miami Dolphins, he will be facing Ndamukong Suh.

It may not matter then who the best quarterback on this team is.

• Thom Loverro is co-host of “The Sports Fix,” noon to 2 p.m. daily on ESPN 980 and espn980.com.


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