Just months removed from collegiate career, Griffin III carries the pressure of expectations from fans, his family, coaching staff--and his own worst critic: himself.
"I can’t go in there and stumble on my words or be too excited in the huddle with those guys. I try to make sure I keep an even keel. I do get excited when we do good things because that’s what the guys need to see."
Head coach Mike Shanahan has shown consistent confidence in his young signal-caller, naming his starter in rookie mini-camp and surrounding him with the right tools to succeed.
Not only does Shanahan expect Griffin III to have nerves in his first NFL game, he prefers it.
"You better feel a little bit antsy; it’s the NFL and it’s your first game," Shanahan explained. "I don’t think there is anybody that doesn’t have butterflies going into a game like this.
"But it’s pressure on everybody. We know we have to play well as a group--it’s not just Robert, it’s the whole offense.”
Griffin III said that he draws confidence from his supporting cast, who have vocally supported him as the leader on offense.
“It’s confidence in the guys around me,” he said. “I think the guys around me help me be confident and know that I’m ready. Then it’s my preparation. I do prepare and take care of what I’m supposed to, and that helps me come out here and make sure I can be confident.
“Guys are here getting paid to do their job. It’s my job to make sure they can go out and showcase their skills as well.”
Griffin III performed well in limited action this preseason, finishing up 21-for-30, for 194 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.
For as much as his coaches and fans are excited to see the playbook in action, Griffin III said he might be the most amped.
"I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how some of the stuff we do works out, and hopefully it will work out extremely well," he said. "It’s just a matter of going out and executing."