Whitlock: RGIII Needs to Grow Up or He’s ‘Gonna Blow This’
WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – The problem of D.C. sports media has become synonymous with that of national sports media, in trying to gauge where Robert Griffin III and Mike Shanahan stand, as the specter of Griffin’s knee continues to thicken and hang over the future of the Washington Redskins.
But national columnist Jason Whitlock, who seems to think RGIII is looking over his shoulder at backup quarterback Kirk Cousins, believes the solution lies squarely on Griffin’s shoulders.
He even went as far as to say RGIII is insecure about his future as the Redskins’ starter, with Cousins looming in the shadows:
“RGIII exposed himself Monday afternoon,” Whitlock said in his column. “Just beneath the tough-guy, ultimate-warrior bravado he trumpets to the media lurks some major, Kirk Cousins-fueled insecurity.
“Griffin doesn’t like the way he’s being handled by the Washington coaching staff because he doesn’t want Mike Shanahan, his teammates or Redskins fans to think the backup QB is a viable option as the starting QB.”
“RGIII, talented, a good person, ego out of control,” Whitlock told Lavar and Dukes on 106.7 The Fan Thursday.
“And I think he had Mike Shanahan boxed in, in terms of keeping him in the game way too long, fearful of the leverage RGIII knows he has, and now it’s continued to play out into the offseason and now into training camp,” Whitlock said.
“We’ve all played football. You’ve obviously played at the highest level, Lavar. You just don’t come out and question your head coach in that fashion, in front of the media,” Whitlock defended his case. “And everybody, ‘Oh, he just answered the question honestly.’ Do you know how many times coaches, players, everybody sidesteps the truth and an honest answer, for the good of the team? And he’s not willing to do that.”
Whitlock believes RGIII’s been more calculated with his posturing to return to the field than his million-dollar smile lets on.
“And now, he has this built-in excuse if he plays poorly to start the season, well, Mike Shanahan didn’t handle him properly,” Whitlock said. “RGIII complained and he should have been playing in the preseason. He’s created a controversy for this team that’s unnecessary.”
“The guy’s got to grow up or he’s gonna blow this,” Whitlock would later say.
Whitlock would set off more fireworks by saying Kyle Shanahan shouldn’t be the offensive coordinator in Washington, because he’s “too young” and too connected to his father.
“He connected with Rex Grossman better than he did Donovan McNabb,” Whitlock said. “Perhaps RGIII is saying he’s connecting with Kirk Cousins better than he is with Robert Griffin. Mike needs to get his son out of that situation. Let him go make his bones someplace else.”
“I’m a huge RGIII fan,” Whitlock insisted. “I want this guy to terrorize the league and be the greatest quarterback, but he’s not doing the right things right now to make that happen, and I’m gonna call him on it.”
He even saved a little for RGIII’s father, RGII.
“And someone needs to tell him, tell your daddy he’s done his job very, very well and now it’s time for RGIII to stand on those two feet that his father gave him, and made sturdy,” he said. “His father needs to talk less publicly.”
Whitlock would wrap up the conversation by comparing RGIII to Jeff George, warning the Redskins’ quarterback that his family’s involvement in his life could have a similar effect on his career.
Hear the full interview below.