The Washington Redskins aren't saying who will be the starting quarterback against the Cleveland Browns in Week 15. Both head coach Mike Shanahan and QB Robert Griffin III didn't want to give the Browns' coaching staff or players a competitive advantage and kept answers vague in their separate addresses to the media Wednesday, as seen on Redskins.com.
"I feel good," RG3 stated several times during the regularly scheduled press conference with the Washington media. He appeared in practice mid-week without a protective brace on his right knee and performed some routine drills in preparation for this Sunday's away game against the Cleveland Browns.
Coach Mike Shanahan was careful in his use of adjectives in describing the rookie QB's playing status, saying he was "limited." Shanahan added that if RG3's "ready to go and at full speed, he'll play." Despite each attempt by the media present, Shanahan wouldn't be any more specific.
There is much on the line for the 7-6 'Skins as they continue to advance toward a shot at postseason play. They have won the last four games and cannot afford a loss this late in the regular season if they hope to keep their drive to the playoffs alive. The 'Skins last playoff appearance came in January 2007 in a wild-card loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
As the Redskins prepare this week for the Browns, much has been said regarding the role backup QB Kirk Cousins will play if needed. Many in the media have voiced or written opinions on whether to bench RG3 and err on the side of caution, allowing the rookie-of-the-year candidate an extra week to heal. Others argue if you are healthy enough to play, then play.
Regardless of which QB starts Sunday against the Browns, Redskins fans should have a bit of confidence in the team's ability as they go for their fifth straight win. The Browns have won three straight games, but they are still the same team that was winless until Week 6.
Statistically, Washington leads Cleveland in many significant NFL per-game categories on offense, which include:
Total Offense—Redskins rank fifth, Browns rank 26th.
Points—Redskins seventh, Browns 24th.
First downs—Redskins ninth, Browns 27th.
Rushing yards—Redskins first, Browns 24th.
Passing yards—Redskins 21st, Browns 20th.
Redskins' QB Griffin is among the top players for the NFL's 2012 Rookie of the Year award as the season enters the final few weeks. With the added media exposure this week regarding his injury, Sunday's game will be under added scrutiny if he has a sub-par performance against the Browns.
Other Redskins players and statistics worth noting include:
RB Alfred Morris enters Week 15 with a 4.8-yards-per-carry rushing average and a 109-yards-per-game average in the 'Skins four-game winning streak.
Kicker Kai Forbath has not missed a field goal all season.
The Redskins have not allowed a punt or kickoff return for a touchdown all season.
The 'Skins have a plus-12 turnover differential.
With either a healthy RG3 starting Sunday or backup QB Kirk Cousins at the helm, the Redskins should continue their winning streak, which dates back to Week 11. The teams meet in Cleveland Sunday, Dec. 16 at 1 p.m. ET on FOX.
Statistical information provided by NFL.com.
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