Robert Griffin III isn’t a clone of Cam Newton.
Believe it or not, just because they’re black, athletic, Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks who have an arm just as dangerous as their legs, that doesn’t mean they’re the same person.
After taking the NFL by storm as a rookie—exactly like Griffin is doing now—Newton is suffering a sophomore slump. But don’t expect RGIII to experience a similar drop-off next season.
The Washington Redskins QB is light years ahead of the Carolina Panthers QB in the maturity department. With his head on straight, he, unlike Newton, won’t take a step backwards.
While actions speak louder than words, words are still thunderous. Griffin is aware of this and—with his walk and talk—he’s already taken control of the locker room in D.C.
Dave Sheinin of the Washington Post reported that, after the 'Skins lost their second straight game last week—a 27-12 letdown in which Pittsburgh Steelers held a two-score lead for the majority of the contest, no less—Griffin proudly said:
Effort has never been an issue with this team. We played hard every play. I tell people I’m never going to quit. It’s not in my DNA to step on the field and not go 100 percent. I never felt we were out of the game, even up to [the point where] we went for it on fourth down with four minutes left.
Ladies and gentlemen, that is a leader.
Now, according to Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports, following the Panthers’ fourth straight loss two weeks ago, Newton said, “The past couple of games have been the same script, by the same director. It's kind of getting boring.”
That isn’t a leader.
But hold on, Carolina’s supposed savior wasn’t finished. He ranted (via Yahoo! Sports):
This taste, this vibe—I'm not buying it, man. And I don't know what it is, but something's going to have to change. Something's going to have to change real fast. … We just find a way to keep the game close just to see what happens at the end. I'm getting tired of it, and that's not a formula to win. Domination is a formula to win.
And that’s the same guy who told ESPN his teammates need to get on his level.
Sorry, Warren Moon, but saying that Newton’s collapse was foreseeable isn’t racist. It doesn’t take a wise, old Oxford professor to notice that the Panthers' passer is immature.
There’s no such worry with Griffin, however. That, combined with the fact that his 8-to-3 touchdown-to-interception ratio is superior to Newton’s as a rookie, and Washington should expect nothing less than to be on the rise in 2013.
David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.
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