If healthy, Griffin will be the starting quarterback as Washington travels to take on Baltimore on Saturday evening. The fourth-year veteran will remain the starter despite having completed just 46.2 percent of his passes (6 for 13 for 44 yards), getting sacked three times, fumbling twice (one lost) and posting a passer rating of 54.6. Griffin didn’t play in the 2013 preseason because he was still working his way back from knee surgery. He last led the first-team offense to a preseason touchdown in 2012.
Meanwhile, backup Kirk Cousins has completed 76.9 percent of his passes (20 for 26) for 245 yards and a touchdown while posting a 118.3 quarterback rating. Cousins also rushed for a touchdown. Colt McCoy, who is competing with Cousins for No. 2 duties, has competed 9 of 12 passes (75 percent) for a touchdown and a 131.6 passer rating.
Gruden on Sunday praised both backups for their effectiveness, and said that unlike Griffin with the starters, each had given play-callers a chance to settle into a rhythm.
Gruden and his coaches have preached competition, telling players that the most productive players will land starting jobs. However, the coach said he hasn’t considered experimenting to see how the offense does with one of the other quarterbacks under center.
“That’s just how we decided to do it,” he said.
The coach also said he will not consider demoting Griffin because of a lack of effectiveness.
“We just have to make sure we do our best to put Robert in a good place, with play calls and and getting things going offensively,” Gruden said. “Hats off to Kirk and Colt. They’ve taken advantage of their opportunities in the second, third and fourth quarters and done some great things out here in practice every day. Robert’s done some good things out here in practice, and we’re judging — not just three drives in preseason games, but the performance through OTAs, training camp, and that’s why we’re going the way we’re going.”
Last week, McCoy ran the second-team offense and Cousins the third unit. The week before, Cousins led the second team and McCoy the third. Gruden said the plan is for Cousins to resume control of the second unit against Baltimore.
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