Robert Griffin III welcomes roster improvements, increased responsibility


Robert Griffin III will play behind a revamped line this season. (Johnathan Newton/The Washington Post)

Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III praised the offseason work of Coach Jay Gruden and General Manager Bruce Allen as they have worked to fortify the offense around him, wide receiver Pierre Garcon, running back Alfred Morris and left tackle Trent Williams.

In free agency, the Redskins added two talented wide receivers in DeSean Jackson and Andre Roberts, a new starting left guard in Shawn Lauvao, a backup guard-center in Mike McGlynn, and are expected to look to the draft to help improve at right tackle and running back while also possibly adding a big-target wide receiver.

“It’s on me to make everything work, and that’s what I’m going to do,” Griffin said. “Coach is giving me all the proper tools, and he’s putting the tools in the shed.”

● Related: Griffin: Trying season is added fuel | QB says he rediscovered identity

But despite saying that it’s all on him now, Griffin insists that he doesn’t feel added pressure to perform.

“There’s no pressure at all,” he said. “My job as the quarterback is to allow everybody else to do their jobs. Alfred is going to run the rock. [Roy] Helu, [Chris] Thompson, [Evan] Royster, whoever it might be. They’re going to run the rock. DeSean, Pierre, Andre, Santana, David Gettis, Aldrick Robinson, everybody at receiver, their job is to make plays. My job is to distribute that, to lead this team, to get everybody in the right position. So, that’s no pressure on me at all.”

Gruden and offensive coordinator Sean McVay also plan to give Griffin more freedom to change plays at the line. (Kyle Shanahan tended to opt against installing a lot of audibles in his system, regardless of whether it was Donovan McNabb, Rex Grossman, John Beck, Griffin or Kirk Cousins at quarterback).

Griffin expressed excitement about that change and increase in responsibility as well.

“If you’re going to give me more opportunities and allow me to control the offense more, that’s all a quarterback can ever ask for,” he said. “So, I’m excited for the opportunity to do everything, and I think Jay is going to allow me to do that. That’s no pressure. That’s what you want. When you believe in yourself, you trust in yourself, and you trust the guys around you, that’s what you want and all you can ask for.”

Griffin said although their relationship remains in the early stages, he feels a strong sense of support from Gruden, who has stressed the importance of everyone within the organization sharing ownership in their mission. The message of unity encourages the quarterback.

“It’s always a constant building of a relationship,” Griffin said. “We haven’t played any games. We haven’t been through any tests or any trials, but just the way it’s started, it’s let me know that we’re in this together, and that’s what it’s all about – being in this together: coaches, players, administration … everybody. It’s all about us in this together to win. We know the only way to have everybody happy is to win football games. It’s not about ego, it’s not about who’s fault it was, it’s not about finger pointing. It’s all about winning. Having that conversation with him really put me in a good place, and having that conversation with the team put us all in a good place, and that’s what’s necessary and that’s what it comes down to.”

Have a question about the Redskins? Send an e-mail to mike.jones@washpost.com with the subject line “Mailbag question,” and it might be answered on Tuesday in The Mailbag.

More Redskins and NFL from The Post:

Robert Griffin III interview: “In a better place this upcoming season”

Jones’s thoughts on the 2014 schedule | Video analysis | The schedule, game by game

Predict the Redskins’ record | Other NFC East schedules | Preseason slate

Early Lead: Nat’l TV games | Top story lines | New flex rules | Skeds by division

D.C. Sports Bog: Ranking the games on the Redskins’ schedule | More Bog

Follow: @MikeJonesWaPo | @MarkMaske | @Insider | Insider on Facebook

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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Mike Jones · April 24

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