Robert Griffin III gave fans quite a scare this past Sunday.
According to Stephen Whyno and Rich Campbell of The Washington Times, the Washington Redskins rookie QB stayed on the ground for a few extra moments after a failed attempt to dive into the end zone against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Here’s RGIII describing the play in which trainers thought he suffered a concussion:
I was just a little dizzy. When I dove, I got the ball inside the pylon, I thought it was a touchdown. I got up to celebrate and everything on the left was on the right and everything on the right was on the left. So I just fell back down and took a second, stood up and I was fine. They tried to check me and see if I had a concussion, but I didn’t have a concussion. I was just a little bit dizzy. Nothing to worry about.
RB Alfred Morris scored a TD shortly after and trainers came to the young QB on the sideline to check him for a concussion. Fortunately, he turned out to be just fine and didn’t show any signs of being concussed.
However, the ‘Skins need to be cautious about RGIII’s playing style or he will almost certainly start suffering from injuries and even concussions.
Per Campbell and Whyno’s report, the signal-caller was forcefully taken to the turf on 28 different occasions against the Bengals. Sustaining that gaudy number of hits is simply unacceptable for someone listed at 6’2” and 217 pounds.
While running is certainly part of RGIII’s unique skill set, and a large reason why he was drafted No. 2 overall this past April, he must learn to slide and take the ball out of bounds.
By trying to eek out an extra couple of feet, with the tradeoff being contact on most possessions, the QB is just putting himself at risk and his team in unnecessary danger (due to the higher chance of a fumble).
Will RGIII change his style?
Michael Vick is one player that Griffin should be cautiously watching tape of, as he is one of the most renowned scramblers in the NFL. However, he’s also been reckless with his body—especially during his youth—and injuries have mounted as a result.
RGIII needs to worry about his body and care for it now at the age of 22, so he can continue to be an elite and mobile signal-caller in 10 years.
While that extra yard here and there might seem worth it in the short term, the ‘Skins QB is going to wish he just slid or went out of bounds in a decade.
It could get especially bad if Griffin III suffers a concussion, or—and we hope this never happens—multiple head injuries, and has his career and future after the NFL impacted.
Coach Mike Shanahan, the training staff and the Redskins roster all need to get on the same page and encourage RGIII to avoid contact whenever possible, especially when on the run.