Sometimes we hear Mike Shanahan talk about the situation surrounding the knee injury suffered by Robert Griffin III and then we hear RG3 talk about it, we wonder if they are on the same page.
You don’t even have to get into close parsing of words sometimes when Griffin is asked about the situation in the Seattle playoff game. "With what happened and how everything was running -- you take me out,” he said recently in an ESPN Magazine article. That statement was largely interpreted as a finger pointed straight at the chest of Shanahan.
That quote came from a short excerpt from the article by J. R. Moehringer. The entire 5,000 words were released online today and it leaves no doubt that the situation has been fully hashed out between coach and quarterback.
Here is the relevant excerpt:
As for blame, guilt, accountability, all the things DC fans want to know about -- Didn't they realize what was at stake? -- the buck stops with Griffin, he says Trumanesquely . . . Griffin isn't throwing anyone or anything under any manner of moving vehicle. "One thing [Shanahan] stressed to me," Griffin says, "is we have to be a close group. We can't let people outside penetrate that and create a rift. Have we talked about the season, the sequence of events that happened over the last four games and the playoffs? Yes. We have. That's something you handle internally."
So we have two things here. One is that they have communicated about the situation using means other than text messages to ESPN personalities or interviews on the NFL Network. They have hashed it out man to man.
The other thing is that we will never know what was said and how Shanahan and Griffin ultimately determined what went wrong in the process and who was to blame for it. We are the “people outside” who could “create a rift”.
And note how Griffin talks about the outsiders creating a rift. One could conclude that one does not currently exist between Griffin and Shanahan. They may not have been happy with how things unfolded from the moment that Haloti Ngata bent Griffin’s knee sideways until the quarterback had to be helped off of the field in the fourth quarter against Seattle. But it appears that they have talked it out, have settled their difference, and are ready to move on with a united front.
Elsewhere in the article, Griffin reaffirms his faith in the Redskins organization. When he awoke after having his knee repaired on January 9, in addition to his real family he saw Dan Snyder, Bruce Allen and team PR director Tony Wyllie at his bedside.
"It's tough for professional athletes to trust anyone in this business," he told Moehringer. "When the owner of the team, the general manager of the team, the PR director of the team, they're all there, that's how you know: I can trust these guys."
We will have to see how things go but for right now, with the exception of the still-healing right knee of RG3, it looks like all is well at Redskins Park.