Robert Griffin III Says He Feels Like He's 'The Best Quarterback in the League'

Dan Carson@@DrCarson73Trending Lead WriterAugust 17, 2015

USA Today

Robert Griffin III closed out the Washington Redskins' final open practice of training camp Sunday in a sit-down interview with WJLA's Alex Parker (h/t the Washington Post's Clinton Yates).

In it, Griffin showed glimpses of old and new, remaining painfully optimistic while also showing flashes of a cynicism that two years ago he might've covered with grins and made-for-Instagram inspiration.

Let's start with what hasn't changed, which are Griffin's knee-jerk assertions of self-confidence.

Faced with a question about whether he thinks he has something to prove during training camp, Griffin laughed it off:

I don’t feel like I have to come out here and show anybody anything or why I’m better than this guy or better than that guy. It’s more about going out and affirming that for me, I go out and I play, I know I’m the best quarterback on this team. I feel like I’m the best quarterback in the league and I have to go out and show that."

Griffin elaborated on his "best quarterback" remark, saying that as a competitor, he has to have that attitude. 

Any athlete at any level, if they concede to someone else they're not the top competitor, they're not trying to be the best that they can be. There's guys in the league that have done way more than me. But I still view myself as the best because that's what I work toward every single day.

Even with this qualification, the truth remains that Griffin put himself in the same sentence as the words "best quarterback in the league."

A couple of people took issue with this idea:

David Richard/Associated Press

Update: August 18

Apparently the team didn’t love what RG3 had to say either, per Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post:

--End of update--

To be fair, Griffin's remarks are boilerplate among athletes struggling through slumps, particularly guys like himself, who seem to believe any admission of fear or frustration amounts to chumming the water for his enemies.

Griffin didn't point out these enemies by name, leaving their actions as a nebulous form of "backstabbing" he never expected to find in professional football:

It’s not the game you thought it was when you were a kid and you were dreaming of playing and being a professional athlete. There's more business that goes into it, there's more ruthlessness, backstabbing than you would expect.

Like a boxer sensing a misstep, Griffin quickly raised the guard of optimism again:

But at the end of the day when you put your helmet on, your shoulder pads and your pants, your cleats and you get to go out there and run around on the field, it's still that same game that you played as a kid.

It's hard to tell which came first for RG3: his optimism or sense of persecution.

One seems to feed the other. His "best quarterback" lines are mocked and torn down by precedent, causing Griffin to further insulate himself with more confidence, resulting in a never-ending cycle of self-mythologizing.

It's "chicken or the egg" stuff, really, and the only question is whether Griffin's paranoia will ever again translate into meaningful play on the football field.

Until it does, RG3's mind is just playing tricks on him.


Dan is on Twitter. He sits alone in his four-cornered room staring at preseason replays.

Related

    Which New Head Coaches Will Succeed? 🤔

    We rank the coaches who are best positioned to lead their teams this fall ➡️

    NFL logo
    NFL

    Which New Head Coaches Will Succeed? 🤔

    Brent Sobleski
    via Bleacher Report

    Fantasy Football Big Board 📋

    @GDavenport looks at which players to target and avoid in his latest position rankings

    NFL logo
    NFL

    Fantasy Football Big Board 📋

    Gary Davenport
    via Bleacher Report

    Ed Oliver Describes Arrest

    Bills DL says he ‘felt violated’ for DWI arrest with nothing in his system; Oliver blew 0.0 on breath test

    NFL logo
    NFL

    Ed Oliver Describes Arrest

    Rob Goldberg
    via Bleacher Report

    Watt 'Optimistic' About NFL Starting on Time: I Believe Week 1 Will Happen

    NFL logo
    NFL

    Watt 'Optimistic' About NFL Starting on Time: I Believe Week 1 Will Happen

    Tyler Conway
    via Bleacher Report