This is Grant Paulsen. He reports about the Redskins for 106.7 The Fan. Everyone who knows Grant thinks he’s a wonderful person and a terrific reporter and probably has hugged him at some point.
But no one — and I say this with all due respect — has ever confused him with an NFL kick returner.
Nevertheless, the hardy souls who cover the Redskins — and who spend way too much time in Ashburn, and with each other — recently got to talking hypotheticals, as they often do, and Paulsen somehow decided that he could make it back to the 16-yard line if he fielded an NFL kickoff at the goal line. Not based on his shifty moves or anything; just based on the pure physics of catching the ball and running straight ahead as fast as he could manage.
So then a spy from the media room told special teams standout Darrel Young about this debate. The fullback said Paulsen was incorrect.
Then the press corps brought this puzzle to Robert Griffin III, who asked London Fletcher, who looked at Paulsen, who said, “Nah, you ain’t getting there.”
Griffin chimed in with his own thoughts. If Paulsen were fearless, the QB speculated, he could maybe advance to the 14 or so, and then fall forward to the 16 if he were lucky.
Still later, Josh Wilson engaged the press corps on this issue, and explained in great detail why Paulsen wouldn’t have a chance at reaching the 16. So on Wednesday, the normally indefatigable Paulsen told Griffin that he had given up the fight, and agreed that he would not make it to his imaginary marker.
And so now we fast forward to Griffin’s weekly Wednesday press conference. At the very end, Paulsen asked a serious question, riffing off previous questions about Griffin hoping to reduce the number of hits he absorbs.
“You mentioned the play on the goal line as one of the plays maybe where you didn’t have to take the hit,” Paulsen began. “If that exact situation takes place in Philadelphia this weekend, are you not gonna take that hit? I mean, that seems like a play that you’ve been wired to try to make.”
“I can’t speak now, today, as if I was on the field in Philly,” RGIII said.
Then he started laughing.
“I know what you’re saying,” he continued. “It’s tough, man. You know, you’re a competitor, I’m a competitor. You know, you want to return kicks….”
Then he dissolved on the podium, and laughed for more than 20 seconds straight, as media members clapped and howled with joy.
See below. You can watch the full clip here, just before the 15:00 mark.