Ten plays, 20 plays, whatever: Thursday night will be the first preseason game of Robert Griffin III’s career. You never get a second chance to make a first fake-game impression, and all that.
So I figured it was my holy duty to bring you highlights from the WaPo coverage of Heath Shuler’s first (home) preseason game, in August of 1994.
* The crowd of 40,778 at RFK Stadium gave Washington Redskins rookie quarterback Heath Shuler three series. And then they booed.
* Kansas City’s Joe Montana was there to remind folks of his greatness. Shuler and John Friesz were there to figure out who will be the starting quarterback for the Redskins when this season begins Sept. 4.
* Asked about the booing, Shuler said: “I thought it was pretty funny. I went to a great high school with great fans. In college, we had the best fans in America. I assumed coming here we would have the same thing. But they were just disappointed. We’ll find out about the real fans when we start winning and everyone jumps on the bandwagon.”
* “It’s not like he was horrible,” [Norv] Turner said of Shuler, who was 9-of-22 for 61 yards. “He was just a little bit off. That is the big question. Can we take him from being just a little bit off to being on? And how long does it take?”
Holy Hankerson. Those were bad, bad days. It’s literally impossible to imagine Mike Shanahan saying, “It’s not like he was horrible” late Thursday night. I don’t like to make predictions, but I’m here to predict that Friday’s game story will not be nearly this horrific to read 20 years from now.
(Note: I later realized the story I highlighted was from Shuler’s first game at RFK, but his second preseason game overall. In his first, he was 4-10 for 47 yards with an interception.)
BECAUSE YOU DON’T READ THE PAPER...
Jason Reid on RGIII: “There’s no need for him to be flawless, or even particularly good, against the Bills. Just a few encouraging signs would suffice.”
Gio Gonzalez homered and pitched a complete game, no big deal.
I wrote another A1 story about Nats fans being excited.
On D.C. United’s Nick DeLeon and his father.
TWEET OF THE NIGHT I
Just Drew Storen, tweeting about Shark attacks.
People still on edge here after last nights shark attack. Officials advise refraining from hitting baseballs to prevent attacks.— Drew Storen (@DrewStoren) August 8, 2012
TWEET OF THE NIGHT II
Just Drew Storen’s dad, tweeting about Wednesday night’s umpiring.
Angel Hernandez evidently views himself as a contender for the gold in the Clown Bro Olympics.— Mark Patrick (@mpos) August 9, 2012
TWEET OF THE NIGHT III
Just Andrea Mitchell, tweeting about Wednesday night’s umpiring.
How many more bad calls by this home plate ump before Davey Johnson loses his cool?— Andrea Mitchell (@mitchellreports) August 9, 2012
QUOTE OF THE NIGHT
Adam LaRoche talked to Angel Hernandez about his run-in with Bryce Harper.
“He assured me that they were good pitches. He said he would never do that to Bryce, he loves him, he loves the way he plays and that there’s no kind of initiation there. He called it the way he would call it to anybody.”
PHOTO OF THE DAY
WHAT TO WATCH TODAY
The Nats are in Houston on MASN2 at 8. The Orioles host the Royals at 7 on MASN. The Redskins play the Bills at 7 in HD on ComcastSportsNet, and in SD on NBC Nonstop. The Ravens host Atlanta at 7:30 on WJLA. All TV/Radio listings are here.
Two kids traded Gio’s home run ball for Bryce Harper autographed baseballs.
George W. Bush used to listen to Charlie and Dave’s Nats broadcasts.
Mark Lerner on this month: “Friends, we are in the midst of a real pennant race....Honestly, my early impression is that it is equal parts pleasure and agony.”
John Feinstein once got a Patriot League basketball game delayed to help his schedule.
Josh Morgan says RGIII’s ball “is like toilet paper.”
McKayla Maroney is not impressed by the Redskins.
There are cool launch events for the new 3 Stars Brewing Company Thursday and Friday at Churchkey and The Big Hunt.
A report from the 2012 National Texting Championships, which come with a $50,000 prize.