Why RGIII Won’t Be Cleveland’s Savior

Written By: Christopher Thomas

March 24, 2016

To disrupt the tranquility of another Thursday morning, Robert Griffin III signed a 2 year deal worth up to $15 million with $6.75 million guaranteed. This is the most important move the entirely revamped Browns front office has made. An office featuring popular new head coach and offensive guru Hue Jackson. This signing will be accompanied by many 2012 rookie year highlights like this:

RG3 Cleveland Browns QBAn absolutely electric RGIII out of Baylor who beat Andrew Luck for Rookie of the Year. I cannot deny that he was exciting and kept opposing defenses on their heels, allowing him to do this..

RG3 touchdown cleveland browns qb

His tremendous athleticism and throw first mentality give him an advantage over a traditional QB. When he executes a play fake, the linebackers and safeties not only have to consider the handoff but also the QB himself running. However all that running led to..

rg3 blows out knee

Everyone will remember Mike Shanahan leaving RGIII in the game after initially coming up lame on his right leg. It was truly saddening to watch such a great athlete break. That is exactly what we witnessed though, mentally and physically RGIII was damaged. After he rehabbed the knee and came back to the starting QB job for the Redskins, he was not the same player. In his sensational rookie season Robert had a 75.63 QBR (Quarterback Rating). The following two years he had QBR’s of 42.16, and 33.49 respectively. In games he started over that time the team went 5-15. He had some injury issues during that time, but he has not recovered from the shattered confidence from his injury. He hesitates, and does not show the same explosiveness, leading to plays like this:

rg3 browns qb big hit

From the Brown’s perspective, I get it. You’ve done the rookie QB thing too many times (see: Brandon WeedenJohnny Manziel, and those are just recent we could keep going). So you want to bring in a veteran QB with a high upside, sure it’s been done. Look at Bruce Arians in Arizona, brings in Carson Palmer and they take over the NFC west. The issue here is, RGIII is no longer the same player we saw in 2012. The 2016 Robert Griffin will hesitate and lose advantage of his athleticism, or he will continue to play recklessly and injure himself yet again; otherwise he will learn a new way to play QB. Anyway you look at it, you’re getting a tarnished good that is no less of a risk than a fresh QB prospect who doesn’t have the same ware.