NFL Rookie of the Year 2012: RGIII Deserves to Win Award Despite Injury

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIDecember 17, 2012

CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 16:  Quarterback Robert Griffin III #10 walks onto the field against the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on December 16, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

Robert Griffin III has played himself into the position to contend for MVP—Rookie of the Year should be a given. If RGIII makes it back in time for the final two games of the season and the Washington Redskins make the playoffs, he deserves to be in the MVP conversation.

His injury was an unfortunate occurrence, but it doesn't appear to be a season-ender, according to USA Today. In fact, head coach Mike Shanahan wouldn't even admit his star rookie was out for the game until later in the week.

Andrew Luck and Russell Wilson have had nice years, but RGIII has been special.

Wilson has been a game-manager for the Seattle Seahawks, and Andrew Luck has shown flashes of the greatness that is surely on tap for him, but RGIII has still been the best of the three.

All three players have their teams in the playoff hunt, but the individual numbers clearly separate RGIII from his peers.

He leads the NFL—not just rookies—in QB Rating at 104.2. He's thrown just as many touchdown passes as Luck (18), but 14 fewer interceptions. His completion percentage of 66.4 is higher than both Wilson and Luck's. 

It's impossible to think about RGIII's impact without considering his rushing ability. He has already run for 748 yards and six touchdowns through 13 games. That's more rushing yards and touchdowns than Luck and Wilson combined.

This proves he's getting the job done with his arm and legs.

Beyond the statistical supremacy, the intangible impact for RGIII has been significant. There is no doubting Luck's impact in Indianapolis, but the Redskins are one of the most dangerous teams in the NFC this year—and most of that has to do with RGIII's impact.

He has brought a winning attitude to the locker room and on the field.

As much as his numbers prove his worthiness of the Rookie of the Year, his presence as a 22-year-old is what general managers around the league hope for when they draft a quarterback high in the first round.

It began early when he had veteran players come to Waco, Texas, per Pro Football Talk, to work out with him before the season, and the leadership qualities have continued to show throughout the season.

RGIII's season has been stellar.


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