Steve Young likes the way that Robert Griffin III plays the game, but that doesn’t mean that he’s ready to invest in RGIII’s stock for the long-term just yet. Per NFL.com and the Los Angeles Times, Young thinks that RGIII and the Redskins are going to have to be more conventional on offense moving forward if RGIII is going to have a long career quarterbacking a perennial contender in Washington. Here’s some of what Young had to say about RGIII and the Redskins offense:
“If you’re playing for 10 or 15 years, you can’t every week run six option plays. It can be around. It can be a part of the game, but sooner or later you’ve got to deliver the ball from the pocket. That’s the game. Now, if the game changes, and it’s proven a championship can be won from the pistol spread, then I’m wrong.”
To those who would respond to Young’s comments by reminding him about the success that he had running the ball from the quarterback position in his Hall of Fame career, Young added:
“People always said to me, ‘You would have been a great running back.’ No, I wouldn’t. I’d be horrible. Because running backs actually line up and take the ball into the line … I ran when no one was around.”
You can read all of Young’s comments, along with opinions on RGIII from Hall of Fame quarterbacks John Elway and Jim Kelly here. There’s certainly no doubting the fact that RGIII cannot frequently subject himself to the kind of physical punishment that accompanies running a spread option attack in the NFL. Anyone who argues otherwise needs to pause and consider just how big and fast NFL defenders are.
However, I’d hate to see RGIII try and change too much of who he is to placate critics and fans who favor more traditional styles of play at quarterback. Yes, RGIII needs to protect himself, but at the end of the day he needs to do whatever it takes to win games, because Griffin’s win-loss record is what will ultimately define his career in D.C. given what the Redskins gave up to get him.