No “Luck” for RG III

No “Luck” for RG III

By: Sonya Chavez

Despite the stats, accomplishments and talent level of RGIII, the Colts decided this promising and prominent quarterback was not their #1 choice.

The 2011 Heisman Trophy winner and the #2 overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the talent and ability level of Robert Griffin III goes without question. However, many may ask with the numbers he put up in college, his physical ability and his accomplishments, why didn’t this quarterback go #1?

Standing at 6’2 and weighing in at 220 lbs, Griffin is built like an athlete. More than that, if one had to sum him up in two words they would say he is a CLASS ACT.

In his 2011 collegiate season at Baylor, Griffin threw for 4,293 passing yards, had 37 passing touchdowns, ran for 699 yards and scored 10 rushing touchdowns. These statistics alone put him above the overall #1 pick from Stanford Andrew Luck.

Griffin completed 2.4% more of his passes than did Luck, against a slate of defenses that allowed less than a 0.7% completion rate.  He had a passing rate of 61.5 which nearly doubled that of Luck at 31.8. As a player Griffin is smart, illusive, able to get away from the pass rush and has amazing arm talent when it comes to power, strength and speed.

With the ability to not only see down the field, Griffin’s ability to run the ball places him in the same heights as 2011 NFL breakout  rookie Cam Newton who had an amazing season with the Carolina Panthers and also was a Heisman winner in 2010.

Some may try to even compare Griffin to quarterbacks such as Vick and Young but in my opinion you just can’t lump him into the Young-Vick category. Vick and Young had the run-first pass-second QB mentality. Griffin is the exact opposite.

There is no question that Andrew Luck is a talented and promising quarterback. After all Luck was drafted #1 overall. He has been compared to the reigns of John Elway and Payton Manning. However, many analysts predict Griffin to be a better overall QB long-term and have a higher bust probability. His ceiling is much higher than that of Luck.

So, the question still remains as to why did Griffin not go #1 overall?

He has the ability, the talent, the structure, determination and work-ethic.  If you had a video game where you could max out every player attribute you would get RG III. Griffin has the big arm and electric legs to make him a prominent QB in the league.

When it comes to intelligence Griffin was just as much of a competitor in the classroom as he was on the field.  He graduated number seven in his high school class, finished his undergraduate degree in 3 years in political science, and was in the process of taking graduate classes toward a master’s degree in film and digital media. If the NFL didn’t work out, Griffin aspired to attend law school.

Could Griffin’s draft status at going #2 as oppose to #1 be due to the “black quarterback stereotype”? Or did Griffin simply not fit the Colts offensive style?

The Colts built their franchise around former quarterback Payton Manning. It seems like choosing Luck over Griffin may have just been a choice at keeping their traditional offensive style in place. In saying that though, the Colts have also never had a starting black QB.

I hate to throw the “race card” out there, but let’s get real someone’s got to talk about the elephant in the room. Yes, we have come leaps and bounds within the last 15 years when it comes to black quarterbacks in the league; however the fact that there is a negative stereotype associated with them cannot go unmentioned. Statistically RG III proved himself to be the better QB.

He was the 2011 Heisman winner as well as the Davey O’Brien National Quarterback of the year recipient. In both cases he beat out Andrew Luck.

As a disciplined and confident player, Griffin is a great fit for the Washington Redskins. Not only will he become the face of the franchise at 22-yeards-old, but he will be able to develop under a great coach in Mike Shanahan.

Griffin and Luck will both have high levels of expectations come this NFL season. They will forever be compared to one another on the field, but as RG III said in a recent interview with Coach John Gruden, “I don’t play against quarterbacks, I play against defenses.”

The first regular season game is scheduled for September 9th. Both Griffin and Luck will make their debuts as starting QB’s, the leaders of their franchise and will have the opportunity to allow their play to do the talking.

 

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