Time For Washington To Cut RG3

Most of you no doubt know that Kirk Cousins will be the starting quarterback for the Washington pro football franchise this season. Jeff Darlington wrote a column suggesting that it’s best for Washington to cut Robert Griffin III now and get it over with.

For now, the quarterback can participate in non-contact drills, which was the case at Monday’s 11 a.m. practice. But the moment Griffin is cleared by neurologist Robert Kurtzke to resume full activities, the Redskins will have a $16.1 million liability on their hands. That’s the figure that Griffin would be owed next season through the fifth-year option on his rookie contract — a figure that is fully guaranteed for injury in 2015.

The Redskins would be indecisive and financially irresponsible to bench Griffin and still allow him to practice, but they would also be na├»ve to think this will end quietly if that’s the path they choose. Which is why cutting Griffin, sooner rather than later, is the only diplomatic choice.

What we all must remember is that it’s possible for somebody to get injured in practice as much as it could happen in a game. If RG3 did get injured during practice, then yes, Washington is on the hook for $16M next season.

There will be those who argue that RG3 gives Washington a good fallback option in case Cousins gets hurt, but the instance you put RG3 on the field, you again risk that he will be guaranteed a massive sum if he gets injured.

While we’re talking about the Washington pro football franchise, ESPN had an interesting tidbit about the Daniel Snyder era.

Just be thankful, Bronco fans, that Pat Bowlen had stability at the QB position for most of his tenure as owner. Consider that the Broncos have four QBs who have had more starts (regular season and playoffs) under Bowlen than Jason Campbell did for Snyder: John Elway, Jake Plummer, Peyton Manning and Brian Griese. Additionally, Jay Cutler had more starts under Bowlen than RG3 did under Snyder. Heck, Kyle Orton had more starts under Bowlen than all but two QBS who have played for Snyder!

That says a lot about how fortunate the Broncos have been under Bowlen and how terrible things have been for Washington ever since Snyder took over.

Published by

Bob Morris

I'm a sports writer in real life, though I've always focused on smaller communities, but that hasn't stopped me from learning more about some of the ins and outs of the NFL. You can follow me on Twitter @BobMorrisSports if you can put up with updates on the high school sports teams I cover.

  • Rhett Rothberg

    I’m in the DC area. The Washington football team is a disaster… Snyder is the Monfort of the NFL, but probably worse because he’s a jerk…

    • Nick

      Maybe you can add some ancedotal evidence, but I’d love for someone to do a generational study of NFL fandom. If it were done, I would bet that the Redskins would have one of (if not the) oldest fanbases in the NFL. Compound their continued incompetence with the constant success of the Ravens just a stone’s throw away, and I have to think that there are relatively few fans under the age of about 25 that chose the Redskins as their team.

      That’s the kind of thing that can be a ticking time bomb down the road when those fans grow up and become more lucrative fans for the NFL. I’d hope that the Raiders could suffer from a similar generational problem, but unfortunately: 1) the 49ers have also had bad stretches when the Raiders have sucked, and; 2) like it our not, the Raiders still cater well to a “rough” section of fans out there.

      • ohiobronco

        The Raiders fanbase has an average (mental) age of 4.7.

      • Rhett Rothberg

        FWIW – Washington scores low in a metric done in one study called “Social Media Equity”. https://scholarblogs.emory.edu/esma/2014/07/28/nfl-fan-base-analysis-2014-the-best-fan-base-belongs-to-the-cowboys-or-perhaps-the-steelers/

        This might be related to fan demographics.

        I will say that there are tons of problems w/ the franchise… The stadium is out in the middle of nowhere and not easily accessible. Also, the area has a highly transient culture, at least in the younger demos due to the military component. But, as you note, the folks who would tend to remain, such as the military/govt retirees will tend to be older…

        Either way, a mess… Oddly enough, I dont see a huge Baltimore following in DC proper. There are definitely hard and fast allegiances, probably due to strong NFC East rivalries (such as with Dallas).

      • cjfarls

        Success breeds fandom, but I don’t think WAS has any bigger problems than that. Their biggest problem is Snyder so consistently tanking the franchise’s ability on the field, to the point of making them a joke. But it’s the same problem Jax, Bills, Tenn, etc have.

        Washington metro is about 5m people… Baltimore is another 2, but there is plenty of folks to easily support 2 teams in the region.

        From where I lived in northern VA, the Panthers were scavenging as many fans as was Baltimore… But my nephew(age10) is still a WAS fan.

  • Nick

    The moral of the RGIII story is that you just don’t fete a player as being bigger than proven. Dan Snyder has repeatedly failed to learn this lesson, and he just ends up making sunk costs even worse.

  • RSH, Esq.

    I agree. The RG III era is clearly over in Washington, which is shocking given how well he played his rookie season.

    • T. Jensen

      It’s sad I think the combination of costing so much (way too many picks for any player), playing really well, becoming the owner’s pet and then getting hurt have become a perfect storm for him. Huge head/ego and never really recovered fully from the injury.

  • Lance Baxter

    There’s not a QB in existence, nor will there ever be, who could succeed under Jay Gruden and Snyder. The absolute best thing that could happen to RGIII is for Snyder to left him off the crazy train.

    • T. Jensen

      but Jay is John’s brother and can of course work QB magic!!!

  • Yahmule

    For Robert Griffin to live, RGIII must die.

  • Jeremy

    What constitutes as an “injury” for an injury guarantee. This is something I often wonder about when discussing contracts, and I couldn’t find anything when I googled it. If RGIII tears his ACL tomorrow in practice, he in theory should be able to play next year, does his injury guarantee kick in? If he plays every game this year, but gets roughed up and is fighting a bad knee all year can his agent claim they are only cutting him for injury and get the guarantee? If he gets a concussion in week 17 does his injury guarantee kick in? What’s the protocol?

  • pubkeeper

    It’s stories like this that make me worried about the day we lose Pat Bowlen.

    Man, I wanna hear kubes and Elway say “this one’s for Pat!”

    • ohiobronco

      We already have, the 2009-2010 Broncos were every bit as dysfunctional as the messes in Washington and Cleveland now. Let’s just hope the eventual next owner isn’t too eager to mess with a good thing.

      • Hercules_Rockefeller

        Sure, Bowlen’s not running the team anymore. But he left in place enough structure and leadership that the team can carry on without him as long as someone else doesn’t come in and screw things up. Whoever the next owner is probably won’t leave things alone but for now Elway and Ellis are doing a pretty good job IMO. So even though he’s not running the team, he’s still having a positive effect just by being alive.

      • pubkeeper

        While it’s true he’s not in the gym every day like he used to be, his shadow is still very clearly seen at dove valley. They still do what he would want them to do. It’s when the team officially switches hands that the trepidation begins.

  • ohiobronco

    RG3 does share some blame but most of his struggles are do to organizational dysfunction and the talent drain due to The Trade. Make me the GM of one of the QB-less teams (Buffalo, NYJ, Cleveland) and I would consider sending a 2nd for him. Cut the drama and make him the starter, get a solid backup and sit him when he’s hurt and he could be a top 16 guy you can win with. Ask him to carry the team and there will be more fail.

  • Royalwithcheese

    So the Broncos wanted Tyrod Taylor. Would they dare take on this mess if he’s released? This is the right offense for RG. Just putting it out there. I know there will be virtual unanimity against it.

    • Orange_and_Blue

      Would love for him to compete with brock when thever time comes. I feel we’ll be surprised.

    • Rhett Rothberg

      Problem is he’s damaged goods…. Literally… He’s done… He has to be a read option guy to be successful…and in that option he get’s destroyed health wise.

  • I think now would be a good chance to lose the racist name, completely rebrand. New everything.

    • Nick

      New everything.

      Like an owner?