The Redskins traded for the No. 2 pick that likely will become Robert Griffin III late on a Friday night. Redskins fans who were still awake and sober — or at least, still awake — jumped on the Internet and had a virtual celebration, filled with lots of virtual high-fives and virtual hugs and virtual hosannas.
Lifelong Redskins fan Firoze Lafeer, who had advocated such a trade for weeks, leaped right into those pixels of joy.
“Oh God, this is amazing,” he wrote that night. “Twitter only needs 3 characters limit now. RG3. Don’t need to say nothing else.”
Lafeer, who is 40, even woke up his wife and 10-year old son, Zach, to share the good news. The latter quickly fell back asleep. But the next morning, after father and son reveled in the trade, they decided they needed a license plate to match their enthusiasm.
They had never gotten a vanity plate before, but they went on the Virginia Web site and fiddled around with some possibilities, including the obvious “RGIII.” Firoze didn’t have his license and registration, though, and the site had frozen out that choice when they logged back on.
So then Zach came up with a different suggestion: “RG32DC.”
“We wanted it to be something about RG3,” Zach told me, “and I decided it should be something about him coming to the Redskins.”
They planned to put the slogan on a plate bearing Virginia’s seal, but decided they might as well go the whole way and get a Redskins logo plate. Firoze — whom I first encountered as an enthusiastic critic during the Jim Zorn and Sherman Lewis Era — wrote about the new plate on Twitter, and then kept his enthusiasm going.
“Too early to drive over to Redskins Park for training camp practice?” he asked later that Saturday.
But his license plate didn’t become famous until last week, when someone else took a photo of it, which eventually landed on Burgundy Blog, and from there to Sports Illustrated’s Web site, under the headline “Jumping the Gun?”
I know it won't happen, but it would be fun to see what this Virginia native would do if the Colts threw everyone a curve ball and took Robert Griffin with the first pick of the NFL draft,” Jimmy Traina wrote for SI.
And so, what would he do?
“We have a big trunk,” Firoze immediately responded. “We’d go up to Indianapolis and go get him. That’s the plan, pretty much. We hope the plate wouldn’t tip the police off.”
(Note: he was joking.)
Firoze was about Zach’s age when the Redskins started winning Super Bowls. When Zach was born, he and his wife got three seats at FedEx Field, and Zach has missed only a handful of home games in his entire life. Zach’s grandmother is already making him a custom RGIII-inspired arm-sleeve for his youth football games, and Zach is already talking about naming his own son Zach, so that his grandson could be ZLIII. They’re kind of excited, in other words.
“It’s been a long time since we’ve had a good quarterback around here, and that’s probably the most important thing in sports,” Firoze told me.
“He’s one of the best athletes, he’s smart, he runs really fast and he has a really good arm,” Zach added.
The license plates have earned appreciate honks daily, including a loud toot from an 18-wheeler on the Beltway the other day. Of course, the Lafeers didn’t actually need new plates, so they still have their old ones. And I had to ask yet again about the Andrew Luck possibility. If the Skins somehow wind up with the Stanford guy, then what?
“Zach actually asked me that a couple days ago: are we gonna make a Luck plate?” Firoze said. “He’s a good quarterback, but it’s not quite the same. RGIII is such a better fit for us, as a city, as a team.”