Robert Griffin III: Rookie Quarterback Continues Dominance Despite Loss

Ian Hanford@Ian_HanfordFeatured ColumnistSeptember 23, 2012

LANDOVER, MD - SEPTEMBER 23:   Robert Griffin III #10 of the Washington Redskins drops back to pass against the Cincinnati Bengals during a game at FedExField on September 23, 2012 in Landover, Maryland.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Robert Griffin III isn't playing like a rookie.

Griffin III had over 300 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns in the Washington Redskins' 38-31 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. He had one fumble, but he was electric once again.

The rookie signal-caller has made a seamless transition to the next level. Washington has a safe system for him to play in, and his versatility makes their attack all that more dangerous.

Through three games, he has three passing yards and just one interception. Mike Shanahan likes leaning on the ground game slightly, but he's also giving his first-year quarterback a chance to shine. Griffin III is 39-of-55, completing 70.9 percent of his passes.

He's also carried the ball 20 times for 124 yards. Throw in two touchdowns, and we've seen flashes of his world-class speed. He's choosing his spots wisely and hitting the defense with a dazzling run at opportune times.

The help of another rookie has helped. Alfred Morris has dashed for 185 yards and two touchdowns. He's given Griffin III someone to lean on, and he's kept Shanahan's run-first mentality happy.

Coming into this season his size was a concern. It doesn't take long to notice his superior offensive skills, but he has made sound decisions as well. Understanding of the offense is apparent; knowing his limits is even more obvious.

He has run the ball, but he's also preserving himself.

Griffin III has answered the call in every way, despite Washington's 1-2 record. Let's not forget that this team lost two key defensive players. They beat the New Orleans Saints in Week 1, then lost the next two games by a combined 10 points. Washington is not a Super Bowl contender, but this team is heading in the right direction.

Griffin III is worth watching. Even if the Redskins lose their next 13 games, the rookie is one of the league's most intriguing athletes. He's passed every test with flying colors, and the future looks extremely bright for him behind center.

Washington would like to see a larger number in the win column, but watching their prized QB make plays reassures them for the future.