Ethics are in short supply these days. In politics, in every day life and especially in sports. The Redskins and coach Jay Gruden are riding high after winning their division by beating the Eagles tonight. Kirk Cousins is dancing with joy, shouting “Do you like that?” But has he forgotten how he got to this point? Does anyone remember that he was given this chance only because Gruden decided to bench Robert Griffin III after a very weird incident in which it was claimed by the team doctor that Griffin had suffered a concussion and wasn’t ready to play? It was never really proven that there was a concussion but it was enough to keep Griffin on the sidelines when the season started. Gruden stated the Redskins were “Kirk Cousin’s team.”
People have short memories. They say things like, “Well, Griffin never proved he could play,” and “he didn’t fit in with the team.” But the truth is in his rookie year he played the kind of football that you only read about in history books or see in movies.And he didn’t just fit in, he was a superstar who not only united the team but inspired it. But an injury to his ACL near the end of that first season crippled him. Then-coach Mike Shanahan kept him in the game making his injury even worse. For the next two years he tried to come back, but the team gave him little support. There was no offensive line to protect him on the field and he suffered devastating hits in every game. Another injury to his ankle benched him again. Finally this year, with his injuries healed, and amidst rumors he wasn’t getting along with Gruden or the team, he was benched because of the spurious concussion.
I suppose winning games is everything in sports, no matter how you do it. Gruden put his man Cousins in the QB position, and humiliated RGIII by demoting him to basically a nonentity. A Heisman trophy winner with a fantastic rookie year! Through it all Griffin has maintained his composure and acted like a team player, but what happened to him had to hurt. Will he be able to recover from that?Will he regain his confidence after not playing after all this time? It’s already a sure thing he’ll never play for the Skins again. And if I were him I wouldn’t want to. He gave Shanahan, Gruden and the Redskins organization everything he had and look what it cost him. Couldn’t they have done a little better by him?
You can only hope that wherever RGIII is traded to, it will be a place where the people have some sense of ethics and fair play. He’s probably lucky he can leave Washington walking.