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Defense Throwing Everything At Griffin III


One of the most important facets of rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III's development will be how he weathers the NFL pass rush.

In his rookie season, Griffin III is scheduled to face five of the top-10 defenses from last year, six of the top-10 sack masters.

In order to prepare him for the backfield heat, the Redskins' coaching staff has had him practice against a steady dose of Redskins' pass rush.

"I think Coach [Mike Shanahan] is trying to get me the hardest looks possible so that I can be ready for those types of things," Griffin III explained after practice.  "Whether teams decide to blitz and bring a lot of pressure, sit back and drop everybody into coverage, or if they just play their normal defense, we're preparing for everything."

Last year, the Redskins had one of the top defensive front-sevens in the NFC, getting five or more sacks from four players.

Through the first four days of practice, Griffin III has shown an increased comfort in dropping back in the face of pressure, stepping up in the pocket to let it pass by, and rolling out to look downfield.

While there have been plays deemed 'sacks' during non-contact drills, Shanahan said he's impressed with Griffin III's adjustment so far.

"He's done a good job right from the beginning, taking pride in everything he does," Shanahan said.  "Even the first day of practice, he didn't have one missed assignment or one wrong called formation. That's pretty impressive, especially when you throw a lot at a rookie quarterback.

"I've been very impressed with the way he handles himself both on and off the football field. He's an overachiever with a lot of talent."

With nine days remaining until the first preseason game in Buffalo, Griffin III feels comfortable in a hostile backfield.  Regardless of how well he and his coaches prepare, he will need to be ready to react at game speed.

"You can try to prepare for everything and still go out there and get a curveball thrown at you," Griffin III said.  "But I think Coach is doing a great job of not only getting the defense better by getting them to show many looks, but also helping us offensively see many different things."




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