‘Getting crunk’ pregame doesn’t work for Robert Griffin III

September 6, 2012

Washington Redskins rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III admitted that despite his laid-back manner, he’ll feel some pre-game nerves before his team’s season opener against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday. But Griffin intends to maintain an even keel rather than let emotions run high.

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins 2012, Redskins wins
Robert Griffin III tends to get into a relaxed frame of mind rather than pumping himself up pre-game. (Nick Wass/Associated Press)

 “Everybody gets nervous, everyone gets antsy, anxious, any word you want to use to put on that, and it happens,” Griffin said. “But you do try to stay calm. I have to. I can’t go in there and stumble over my words and be too excited in the huddle with those guys. … I do get excited when we do good things because that’s what guys need to see. But for the most part, I do try to stay calm.”

 To control his emotions, Griffin will go through his usual pre-game rituals, which include slipping on his headphones and listening to some R&B tunes.

 “It’s in my music selection at the beginning of the game. I try to stay real cool, calm and collective,” Griffin said. “I throw a little Michael Jackson in there to spice it up. But other than that, you just try to clear your mind and don’t think about it too much.”

 While some players prefer to get pumped up before games, Griffin has learned that the times he took that approach, he failed miserably.

 “I’ve learned a lesson,” he said. “I was that way all the way through high school and my freshman year of college. I think my sophomore year, I tried to get a little too – as they say in college – crunk, and I didn’t play well for about three games doing that getting crunk stuff. It’s just not who I am. So I just try to make sure I stay calm, stay cool, calm and collective, and I don’t worry about what other guys do. Everyone has a different way of getting ready, and it just happens to be my way and I know that.”

Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.
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