But the rookie quarterback said he doesn’t feel the need to make any grand team speeches before he and his teammates take the field for the first time in training camp Thursday.
Instead, Griffin said he will defer to the undisputed leader of the team: 37-year-old inside linebacker London Fletcher.
“Right now the speech duties are going to London Fletcher,” Griffin said. “So, I’m not going to try to trump him on those.”
Griffin wasn’t looking to shirk any responsibilities, but instead displayed his respect for Fletcher, whom he talks with often as he learns the ways of NFL life.
The quarterback said that he does have a message ready for his teammates if the right time comes for him to address them during training camp, however.
“If I ever had to just sit back and tell those guys anything, it’s ‘You want to be certified.’ One thing I’ve talked to the rookies about before is if you’re the baddest guy in your group, then you’ve got a problem. You don’t need to be hanging out with guys that aren’t as certified as you are, so we have got to make sure that everybody on this team is certified. . . . You have to be certified, and that lets everybody know that when you run up to the guy next to you, you’re going to take care of business. So, that’s what we have to do. It doesn’t have to be a one-man show, and I’m not going to try to make it a one-man show. It’s about all of us going out there — offense, defense and special teams — and executing football.”
Griffin said his ability to lead is the aspect of his game that sets him apart. He said leadership doesn’t always require outspoken behavior, however.
“I think [my teammates] see how hard I work, how hard a lot of these guys work,” Griffin explained. “I talk to these guys a lot just about little things, whether it’s picking up on what Fletch has done to conquer so long in the league. Sometimes people think it’s what you say when you’re in the huge group that makes you a leader, but sometimes it’s the one-on-one conversations you have with guys individually, just getting to know them. I think I’ve done a lot of that. Not intentionally, it just happens. Some people can do those types of things, some people can’t. The team might not have accepted me as their leader yet, but they definitely see me as a guy that can help.”