Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III has a lot on his plate between rehabbing his injured knee and preparing for his wedding.
In a kind gesture, many of his fans have given back to the dynamic signal-caller, who almost single-handedly changed the fortunes of the struggling franchise in the nation's capital.
Griffin tweeted an appreciative shoutout to many of his fans, who have pitched in to help buy all the items from his wedding registry at Bed Bath & Beyond:
Thank you to the Fans who are helping buy ALL the items from our wedding registry at Bed Bath & Beyond … say.ly/MLw5Rbg— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) May 19, 2013
UPDATE: Sunday, May 26, at 7:42 a.m. ET by Brandon Galvin
Robert Griffin III and Rebecca Liddicoat are sending thank-you letters to fans who sent them wedding gifts, according to Washington Post's Sarah Kogod.
Reader Keith Elgin sends along this pic of a thank-you note he got from Robert Griffin III and Rebecca Liddicoat. You may remember Elgin from Dan’s fan story last week, whose wedding gift to the happy couple was a welcome mat.
The note was handwritten, and included an autograph.
---End of update---
Unfortunately, some responded to the situation with disapproval, which Griffin also addressed:
I didn't ask the fans to buy me anything. They found it on their own and decided to get what they could. SMH at all these Debbie downers— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) May 19, 2013
Because you are rich you are not allowed to receive gifts and any gifts you receive should be donated to charity???? #WOW Smh...— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) May 20, 2013
Haters gon hate. Theme of the day. They always say more money more problems. Or mo' money mo' problems. Yea I'm cultured #DealWithIt— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) May 20, 2013
Clearly, the generosity of his fans caught Griffin off guard, and he expressed his genuine gratitude toward those who graciously assisted him.
Is Robert Griffin III right to accept the generous gifts from fans?
Several who replied to Griffin's initial tweet suggested it wasn't proper for less fortunate fans to give gifts to a man drafted No. 2 overall in the 2012 NFL draft and signed to a four-year, $21 million contract.
Either way, Griffin is only 23 years old and undertaking marriage. Especially at such a young age, making that leap not easy by any means. He handled the circumstances the best he could on his own, but fans thrilled by his electric play and gutsy leadership on the field this past season felt compelled to give back to him.
Notions that this is bad for Griffin from a public relations standpoint seem ludicrous, and his response to one thread summarized why:
The Washington Post's Dan Steinberg chronicled fan's supporting their decision to send Griffin gifts:
'It’s not like that was money I’m not going to donate to charity; I’m just not going to go out to happy hour one time during the week,' Patrick Dibert told me on Monday. 'I mean, it’s just kind of funny to say I bought RGIII a present.'
'It was kind of a goof,' agreed Wes Taylor, a 30-year old from Anne Arundel County who bought RGIII and his fiancee a pair of spoon holders for $8. 'To be perfectly honest, I just saw something on there that wasn’t that expensive and was like ‘You know what, I might as well send that.’ It was off the wall, it was goofy and no one else had bought it.’'
'I’m only 24 years old, but he just gave me the most exciting Redskins season I’ve ever seen,' Danny Kolta explained. 'He’s a normal person. Just because he’s rich he shouldn’t be able to receive gifts? That’s kind of stupid….With all the bad quarterbacks we’ve had, now we actually have something to be excited about. I just wanted to thank him. That’s the least I could do.'
Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith also voiced his support of Griffin on Twitter:
Folks made RG3s registry that he didn't even put out there a big deal smh let the guy live— Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) May 20, 2013
Griffin, the Offensive Rookie of the Year this past season, tore his ACL and LCL in the divisional playoffs against the Seattle Seahawks. Thankfully for many football fans, his recovery is well ahead of schedule. According to his father (via Jim Corbett of USA Today), he has been throwing since late April.
As a rookie keying the league's No. 1 rushing attack, Griffin threw for 3,200 yards, 20 touchdowns and just five interceptions while scampering for 815 yards and seven more scores.