Despite ongoing scrutiny and little success to silence it, Robert Griffin III said that he and his teammates remain focused and have the capability to dig their way out of the hole that they have created with their 1-4 start.
The Redskins entered the season with high expectations because of last year’s playoff run and his historic rookie season. But this offseason, the quarterback, his coach, team officials and questions have had to answer questions on a variety of topics, which could prove distracting.
Griffin didn’t blame the 1-4 start on any of them, and said that everyone within the organization had prepared themselves to deal with expectations. The key to preventing those expectations from turning into added pressure, is focus and character, Griffin said.
“It’s not pressure. It was just the expectation,” he said on Wednesday. “Whenever you play the way we played as an offense in general — not just myself — moving the ball, making big plays, putting points on the board. Whenever you play like that and the next year you come back and you don’t, and your quarterback has a significant knee injury in the offseason, the scrutiny is going to be there. But I think for a lot of guys in this locker room, nothing’s ever been easy for us as far as in life. It’s never been given to us. Some guys want to see us get a break, and some guys don’t.
Griffin continued, “With all the scrutiny going on with our team as far as the name, my knee injury, the way we started the season — all that stuff can pile up. And the good thing about the locker room is we do have a strong locker room, and coach said we have too much character on this team to fold. And [London] Fletcher said it today. I saw he said how we have the guys in the locker room and we have the ability to dig ourselves out of this hole, and I think we will.”
Wide receiver Santana Moss said that of all the members of the team, Griffin naturally bears the brunt of the pressure because of his profile. He thinks that the second-year quarterback has done a decent job of dealing with those expectations and the scrutiny. But Moss’s advice is to block everything out as much as possible.
“It would be pressure on anybody who gets talked about every day, all day, 24-7. When he wakes up in the morning, see his face on TV. When he goes to bed at night, he sees his face,” Moss said. “That’d be hard for anybody who’s in those shoes. But the advice I’d give to anybody in those shoes: just don’t listen to it whether it’s good or bad. Do you, play your kind of football, do what got you here. All that stuff they say on TV, let them talk. Mute the channel, change the channel. That’s what I do because half the stuff is not positive and if you let that stuff leak in, it’s going to get you caught up, so that’s how I look.”
● Shanahan on Niles Paul’s comments.
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