The Washington Redskins are rumored to be headed for yet another quarterback controversy, with reports that team owner Daniel Snyder may be pulling strings to get Robert Griffin III back in the game and send Kirk Cousins to the bench.
The Redskins paid an enormous sum to draft Griffin second overall in the 2012 draft, a move that appeared to pay off at first when he outplayed fellow rookie Andrew Luck to be named NFL Rookie of the Year. But the time since then has been marked with injury and inconsistency, and this offseason RGIII lost his starting job to Kirk Cousins.
But he may be earning it back. After three shaky games for Cousins as starter, there are rumors that Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder is pulling strings to get RGIII back on the field. Coach Jay Gruden said there is no quarterback controversy after Cousins had a bad game in a Thursday night loss to the New York Giants, but Bleacher Report’s Jason Cole said there could be a much different conflict brewing, one between coach and owner.
“Ultimately what owner Daniel Snyder prefers is that Robert Griffin III is the starter,” Cole reported.
Cole said that sources within the organization had told him that Snyder was ready to push for Griffin in the event that Cousins faltered as starter, and that appears to be happening now.
It is unclear if Jay Gruden would budge in the situation. He appears set with Cousins, and if the Redskins play RGIII, they run the risk of having to pay a huge bonus if he does end up playing and getting injured again.
Though Robert Griffin III has just a $3.269 million base salary in the fourth year of his rookie contract, there is a fifth-year option with an injury guarantee of $16.1 million.
As ProFootballTalk noted, that means he is likely to remain on the bench. The report even speculated that the Redskins may not have cleared him for the season at all, though that didn’t end up playing out.
“Washington can avoid the base salary only by trading Griffin. But who would trade for that contract, especially since the fifth-year option has an injury guarantee of $16.1 million?
“Indeed, Griffin still hasn’t been cleared to play. No one would consider trading for a guy who has yet to receive full clearance from an indepedent neurologist.
“And that’s where the concussion and the fifth-year option intersect. Until he’s cleared, Griffin is in theory eligible for the $16.1 million in 2016. And while it would be highly unusual for Griffin to have suffered a concussion that keeps him from playing in the 2016 season, Griffin suddenly has 16.1 million reasons to have a concussion that keeps him from playing in the 2016 season.”
While the quarterback controversy rumors around the Washington Redskins are mostly quiet for now, they could intensify if the team continues to lose under Kirk Cousins.
[Image via Instagram/Washington Redskins]