WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- It was about mid first half of the Skins-Raiders game, third down and seven yards to go.
Washington was backed up on its own 23 yard line when Robert Griffin took the snap from the shotgun, danced away from danger, reset his feet and delivered a strike to Pierre Garcon for a first down. Watching the game I thought to myself, "nice!" It was the kind of spontaneous, in-the-pocket matriculation that only a superior athlete with pocket poise and accurate passing skills could make.
Much has been made of RG3 or Rust-G-3 through the first quarter of the season.
When Griffin takes snaps, nothing much resembles the electrifying, game-changing, dual-threat signal caller of 2012. It's been a point of frustration for Redskins fans who desperately want their quarterback to author another one of those Minnesota Vikings-like 76 yard house calls along the sideline late in a game.
My opinion, burgandy and gold nation is getting exactly what it wanted even if they don't realize it. During the off-season, fans clamored for a safer, wiser, less risky Griffin. Well, you got it.
Griffin is not running as much and he is not as fast as he used to be. Truth is he may never run as fast as that December day against the Vikes. Deal with it.
Here's a question though, why does he have to run a 4.3 40-yard dash? As long as he doesn't require Tommy John surgery on his throwing arm, he'll be fine.
Quarterbacks who allow their legs to run them into harm's way don't live long in the NFL. They make highlight reels but eventually they land on the injury report. History tells us that.
Mike Vick, Colt McCoy, Vince Young, Mark Brunnell (more when he was with the Jags). From where I sit, Griffin is a pretty good package. A quarterback with passing skills, who is mobile enough to get out of the way of 300-pound heat seeking defenders. His ability to extend plays demoralizes defenses. Cats like him are difficult to capture on 3rd and long.
Washington fans just have to live with this reality, getting to the elite passing level takes time. Griffin is not there yet, but when he does, watch out league.
The road to getting there, however, is littered with bumps. The Redskins really do not have the weapons to be a consistently elite downfield passing team. They need better receivers and their offensive line could be stouter.
Maybe this is the time to give respect to the Shanahan's. I think they knew they did not have the weaponry and needed a system to maximize the talent of their special being at quarterback.
I also think they knew it would be risky and they would eventually have to scale back the running portion of the pistol to protect assist Griffin's longevity. Maybe they just weren't expecting to do it so soon.
Oh well, Operation Scale Back is here. No injury is good for any player. Maybe, however, what happened to Griffin last season, sped up a process that was bound to happen. To this point, Washington's offense has been like that ugly blackhead on your face. Tough to look at.
But it's the direction the team needs to go. Don't ask Griffin to run more, get him more weapons. That might take awhile but do it. If he runs more, he will get hurt again. Griffin has the skills to be a master surgeon in the pocket. Here's hoping he plants himself there and stays there.