RG3 Injury: Rushing Washington Redskins QB Back Is Worst Move Team Can Make

Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent IDecember 15, 2012

LANDOVER, MD - DECEMBER 09:  Robert Griffin III #10 of the Washington Redskins reacts on the sideline in the fourth quarter during a game against the Baltimore Ravens at FedExField on December 9, 2012 in Landover, Maryland.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Even if the Washington Redskins emerge victorious this weekend in Cleveland, they could potentially come away losers.

It all depends on how they handle their current quarterback situation. Sensational rookie starter Robert Griffin III is suffering from a sprained right knee, while rookie backup Kirk Cousins hasn't yet been named the starter for Week 15's showdown with the Browns.

While some see it as the Redskins simply keeping their options open, others, including myself, view it as flirting with disaster.

Rushing the franchise's heart and soul back from a scary-looking injury just 13 games into his first NFL season is foolish. Never mind that Washington is three wins away from a potential playoff berth. Playing RG3 in order to win on Sunday may result in next season being lost, and future ones to come.

Sure, the NFL might as well stand for "not for long," but there must be someone within Washington's front office concerned with RG3's and the franchise's long-term health and success. The risk greatly outweighs the reward in this case. Plus, the reward can still be had with Cousins under center. 

Griffin may give the Redskins the best chance to claim their eighth victory of the season and extend their winning streak on the road this weekend, but that doesn't mean starting him is the right move. In fact, it's the worst move the team can make.

And why wouldn't Mike Shanahan be willing to go with Kirk Cousins, the man he and the Redskins drafted in the fourth round last spring?

While everyone else was ripping the front office for drafting the former Michigan State signal-caller, the Redskins, who were under the impression that they had their next solid backup quarterback,
were defending their decision.

Cousins even played phenomenally down the stretch last week against Baltimore, tying the game late to send it into overtime, where the Redskins won on a field goal.

Now, one week later, Washington has another opportunity to capitalize on their fourth-round selection. If this isn't the scenario that the Redskins had in mind when they drafted their second rookie quarterback last April, then what is?

Starting RG3 back in Week 6 after he suffered a concussion the previous week seemed somewhat irresponsible, but a second situation in which Washington rushes the franchise's savior back from a frightening hit would be absolutely careless.

I understand Washington is hungry for some success. But hurrying RG3 back from the second serious injury of his rookie year is not the answer. 

The answer is Cousins. This why the Redskins drafted him just three rounds after Griffin, isn't it?


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