Lots of stuff coming out of the first day of Washington Redskins OTAs, including the apparently scary, inadvertent sideline takedown of head coach Mike Shanahan by defensive back Brandyn Thompson. But as I was reading through the player quotes that the team's media relations staff sent out, I was particularly struck by this one from London Fletcher, when asked whether the trade-up to draft quarterback Robert Griffin III was part of what convinced him to re-sign with the Redskins:
"Obviously, them being able to get into that second pick was something huge for me. I'm a guy, I'm in my 15th season, to go into another year with not having a quarterback was not very appealing to me, I'll tell you that. So, when they were able to make the trade, knowing we would be getting either Andrew Luck or him, that definitely made the situation a lot brighter as far as coming back here. So you know, I've had enough years of other stuff."
I guess he didn't add, "No offense, Rex Grossman, Donovan McNabb or Jason Campbell." But you have to love a guy who gives it to you straight, and the sense around the Redskins the past few years has indeed been one of, as Fletcher put it, "not having a quarterback." Now, they have Griffin, whom everyone loves and of whom great things are expected. Fletcher is impressed with the young man, per this quote:
"He's very humble, you know very respectful, you know not coming in feeling like he's entitled to anything. He's willing to work, he works hard, he's in here early, and he's in his playbook. There are some first-round draft picks, especially high guys, they come in and feel like things should be given to them. That's not the case with him. He has an aura about himself that people want to gravitate to him and just get to know him, talk to him, things like that. You can see why everybody spoke so highly about him."
The latest in a long line of glowing Griffin testimonials. The excited, enthusiastic Griffin honeymoon is in full swing in Washington, and right now Griffin can do no wrong. We're still four months away from games that count, and likely many more months away from Griffin doing anything that opens him up to grumbly criticism and concern.
The Redskins' 2012 quarterback may be a rookie, but it's clear he's got folks around the team feeling as though things are finally going to be okay at the most important position on the field, after a long time during which they've not been.