Robert Griffin III's career started off with a bang. Coming off a Heisman winning collegiate season, the no.2 overall pick in 2012 won Rookie of the Year (over Andrew Luck!) by throwing for 3,200 yards and 20 touchdowns and by rushing for another 815 yards and seven more scores. The Redskins went 10-6, winning seven in a row to finish the season, and clinched the NFC East for the first time in 13 years. It was one of, if not the best rookie season a quarterback has ever played with a record passer rating for a rookie. Dan Snyder, the owner who gave up a kings ransom to the Rams for the rights to draft RG3, looked like a genius. Then, the injury that forever derailed the rookie's career occurred.
Griffin suffered a torn LCL and ACL in his right knee during their first playoff game against the Seahawks (the same ACL was torn in 2009). After making a stunningly fast recovery, RG3 was deemed ready to play by the start of the 2013 season. However, in his second season, he threw for only 16 touchdowns and ran for half as many yards as he did as a rookie with no rushing scores, en route to a 3-13 season for the 'Skins. "Chalk that one up to his recovery," experts thought. "He'll be better next season," the faithful fans ranted. Oh, but how wrong everyone was, and now Dan Snyder has a big decision to make heading into the offseason.
With the subsequent benching of RG3 this season and head coach Jay Gruden proclaiming "he's done with him," Robert Griffin's future in Washington is in doubt. The team has until May 3, 2015 to extend his contract to a fifth season which would pay him roughly $18.4 million. If they do not pick up the option, they owe him about $3.3 million for 2015 only (but will take a cap hit of $6.7 million). It's likely at this point that the one time Washington Redskins savior could find himself starting over in a city other than D.C. next season. This is a list of the 10 most likely places he could end up. And while people around the sports world have made cases for the Giants, Cowboys, and especially the Eagles as possible destinations, it's unlikely that the proud Dan Snyder would trade with a divisional foe and risk having RG3 beat them up for the rest of his career, so they have been left out.
10 10. Cleveland Browns
9 9. St. Louis Rams
As previously mentioned, Dan Snyder is a proud man. In 2012, the Redskins traded three first round picks and a second round pick to the Rams for the 2nd overall pick in that year's draft, the same pick used to draft Robert Griffin III. The Rams turned those picks into six key players including: DT Michael Brokers, CB Janoris Jenkins, LB Alec Ogletree, WR Steadman Bailey, RB Zac Stacy, and OT Greg Robinson. In fact, the Rams sent all six of those players out for the coin toss in Washington this past Sunday.
8 8. Oakland Raiders
7 7. Houston Texans
6 6. Tennessee Titans
5 5. San Francisco 49ers
4 4. Washington Redskins
The world is down on Griffin right now and rumors out of Washington are that Dan Snyder is ready to give up on him. However, we know that Snyder is a strong-willed, proud, successful man, who could decide by the end of the season that Colt McCoy, or any other available quarterback isn't the answer. Or maybe he comes to the decision that Griffin hasn't had a fair go of it. Among the slew of injuries, he's had two head coaches in three years, and Snyder has already chosen Griffin over one of them. Reportedly, Jay Gruden is finished with RG3 now (much like Shanahan was) so again, Snyder will possibly have to choose between the two. With the haul Snyder gave up to get RG3, and the fact that Washington is at the bottom of the division yet again, there's a chance Griffin gets one more chance with the team that drafted him.
In fact Jason Reid of the Washington Post recently reported that if Gruden can't make it work with Griffin, that he could be the one sent packing. Reid writes:
3 3. New York Jets
2 2. Buffalo Bills
1 1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
On January 2 of this year, the Buccaneers hired Lovie Smith to be the head coach. On March 12, they signed QB Josh McCown and made him their starter. September 18, McCown got hurt after starting the season 0-3. Ten days later, Mike Glennon made his first start and won his only game before losing four straight. McCown then returned in week 10 and has only one victory since. It's been an unsettling and unspectacular season for both quarterbacks.
Clearly, McCown has proven he cannot be "the guy" just as he did as a starter in Arizona. Tampa Bay and Lovie Smith have a dire need for a franchise guy, and they are looking at the same two decisions most of the teams on this list have. Take a QB in the first round of the draft, make a trade or sign a free agent. After such a disappointing season, Lovie Smith may not be interested in developing a rookie and he has a track record of trading for QB's going back to Chicago. Griffin can come in, get a fresh start with a new team, and be the veteran guy Lovie can work with, having the greatest upside of any other quarterback on the roster.
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