Washington, D.C. – In a not surprising move, the Redskins are going to release quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Griffin wrote on Instagram on Monday: “After 4 years, my days as a part of this team have come to an end.”
Griffin’s departure would be the culmination of a sudden rise and stunning fall for the 2012 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, who didn’t play last season for the NFC East champions as Kirk Cousins took over as the starting quarterback.
RG3 arrived as a Heisman Trophy winner and the No. 2 overall draft choice – a pick that came from the Rams at the high price of three first-round selections plus a second-rounder – and immediately became a star and national sensation.
Working with a zone-read offense tailored to his sprinter’s speed and other skills, Griffin led the Redskins to a division title. But in a playoff game against Seattle, Griffin at first was hobbled by a clearly hurt right knee, then wound up face-down on the turf with torn ligaments.
He was never the same player for Washington.
Griffin returned quickly from reconstructive knee surgery, but Year 2 did not go well. He and then-coach Mike Shanahan clashed, and the QB was benched for the final three games. In 2014, with Shanahan gone and Jay Gruden in charge, Griffin dislocated his left ankle in Week 2 and missed about half the season.
In February 2015, Gruden declared Griffin would be the team’s starting quarterback. But by the end of the preseason, which included a bizarre back-and-forth over whether Griffin was ready to return from a concussion, Gruden announced that Cousins, a fourth-round pick the same year Griffin entered the league, would move from backup to the No. 1 QB spot.
Tumbling all the way to third-string duty, behind Cousins and Colt McCoy, Griffin never took a single snap all season.
(the Associated Press contributed to this post)