Mike Shanahan's Exploitation of RGIII Is a Complete Disgrace

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Mike Shanahan's Exploitation of RGIII Is a Complete Disgrace
USA TODAY Sports

Watching a franchise quarterback hobble around in a wild-card playoff game that some thought he shouldn't have even started is enough to make any fan furious.

But when it's a Giants writer, like yours truly, pulling his hair out in disgust over the Washington Redskins' Robert Griffin III limping around for four quarters before leaving the game after his knee buckled trying to recover a botched snap, you know it's serious.

I am a native New Yorker, a Giants fan since the '70s, a Giants columnist here at Bleacher Report since last February. Thus, it is my birthright to hate the Redskins.

But yet on Sunday, as I watched RGIII limp around and put his career at risk for a team that, in my opinion, clearly was not going to win the Super Bowl this year, I was dumbfounded, taken aback—hell, I was angry.

I was, and still am, fuming mad at Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan and the entire organization for being so short-sighted in their handling of RGIII since we saw his leg flip back and forth like a Twizzler on Dec. 9 against Baltimore.

Now, you can't call a playoff game a "meaningless game," and I'm not even going to suggest that. But, what do the Redskins have to gain by putting their rookie signal-caller's future at risk against the Seattle Seahawks?

If the Redskins got blown out with Kirk Cousins lining up behind center, is Shanahan out of a job? Of course not.

If Washington loses a nail-biter to Seattle, do Redskins fans end the season with a bad taste in their mouth? Hell no.

Are season ticket sales going to suffer because the Redskins went one-and-done in their first playoff venture with RGIII? Duh. That would be a no.

I can't even begin to find the appropriate word, or phrase, to describe the absolute idiocy of Shanahan and the Redskins for risking their future—their franchise quarterback's future—for a lousy wild-card win.

If RGIII sustains further injury to his knee, if, God forbid, his career is cut short, if he can't play the style of game that suits him perfectly because his coach threw caution to the wind and threw him out on the field in about as meaningless a playoff game as one can play, then I can't begin to imagine the repercussions for a team, for a franchise, for a coach that has done virtually nothing right the other side of Robert Griffin III for the past decade.

You can say I'm going overboard. You can say this is hyperbole. You can say I'm just another Redskins hater.

But I'm simply speaking from my gut here, shooting from the hip.

And I'll tell you, when I saw RGIII go down in the fourth quarter, and lie motionless for some time, I literally felt sick to my stomach.

Sick to my stomach and mad as hell at Shanahan for putting this kid's career at risk.

It is probably the dumbest thing I have seen in the 30-plus years I've been watching football. It is, to be blunt, unforgivable.

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