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Robert Griffin III Full Transcript: 10/16

Posted Oct 16, 2013

On Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013, Redskins QB Robert Griffin III addressed the media after afternoon practice at Redskins Park in Ashburn, VA.

On Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013, Redskins QB Robert Griffin III addressed the media after afternoon practice at Redskins Park in Ashburn, VA.

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On to what he attributes the difference in his completion percentage this season:
“It’s exactly what you said. It’s a matter of missed communications. There’s some missed throws in there. There’s some dropped passes. All of that accumulates into what the stats say, but it’s a long year and we’ve got a chance to make sure that those numbers do get back up and we’ll make sure it does.”
 
On miscommunications with his receivers:
“I’m not concerned by them. It is frustrating when you have a situation like we had there in the red zone, but you have to move on from those things. You can’t let those things linger in your head. For us, we do practice so hard at that kind of stuff. We’ve just got to be on it on game day.”
 
On if he and his receivers are on the same page:
“Yeah, I mean we all want to win. All of those guys know what they’re supposed to do. They know where they’re supposed to be. Sometimes, it just doesn’t happen that way, and we have to make sure we limit that.”
 
On his comment that he wants to go back to playing the way that got him here:
“It just means you can’t lose faith in who you are. You can’t lose confidence in what you’ve done to get to the level that you’re at. Countless the number of players, you never forget what got you to where you are. That’s all I’m saying. It’s not a shot at anything else or at the coaches or anybody or anything like that. It’s just saying, ‘Look, I’ve got to be the guy that I know that I am.’”
 
On how that comment relates to his rushing performance last Sunday:
“The yardage was different; it was one of the questions I got after the game. I was really just talking about running the ball. Everybody wants me to slide and get out of bounds and do that whole thing. For me, it’s just about I can’t really listen to that. It’s not that you ignore it. I understand that people are concerned, but at the end of the day, you have to go out there and play with your instincts. So when you say I was more instinctive, it’s just because I let my instincts take over as opposed to, ‘Let me run out of bounds so everyone doesn’t get mad at coach,’ or something like that, or mad at me or whatever they want to say – just more instinctive running the ball and just playing football.”
 
On if thinking about running out of bounds and sliding was hindering his ability to run the football through the first four games:
“I think it was. It’s not a bad thing. I could still get out there and play with instincts and slide and get out of bounds, but this team needs me to do more to help them win and help us win. That’s what I’ve got to do. I’ll still go out there and protect myself. It’s not that it was a bad thing the first couple of games. Maybe it was a good thing. Now I can move on from it.”
 
On if he feels pressure to be the same player he was last season:
“There’s just an expectation. Whenever you play the way we played as an offense in general – not just myself – moving the ball, making big plays, putting points on the board, whenever you play like that and you come back the next year and you don’t play like that and your quarterback has a significant knee injury in the offseason, the scrutiny is going to be there. But I think for a lot of guys in this locker room, nothing has ever been easy for us as far as in life. It’s never been given to us. Some guys in this league get a break and some guys don’t. With all the scrutiny going on with our team as far as the name, my knee injury, the way we started the season – all that stuff can pile up. The good thing about the locker room is that we do have a strong locker room. And Coach says it all the time – we have too much character on this team to fold. And Fletch [linebacker London Fletcher] said it today, I saw what he said. We have the guys in the locker room and we have the ability to dig ourselves out of this hole and I think we will.”
 
On if he needs to be the same player as last season or evolve with the league:
“I think the league does evolve, but at the same time, I have to be that guy. There’s no pressure, none whatsoever. You’ve still got to go out and play football, and that’s what I was talking about after the game – just getting back to being me. You know how to play the game. Listen to your coaches, go through that whole thing and just go out there and play and have fun, and that’s what it’s about. So it’s not that there’s pressure to be a certain guy or have a certain amount of numbers – I could care less about the numbers as long as we win. If we win games, all is good.”
 
On if having success rushing was the last hurdle before he could be satisfied with his recovery:
“I think that’s for everyone else to see. I’ve been fine. Like I said, I just ran with more instincts in the past game and it showed up with the numbers and just the big plays we were able to make with myself running and then [running back] Alfred [Morris] getting some big runs there, too. I think it’s good for everyone on the team to see that and feel like I’m back.”
 
On the offense’s struggles in the red zone:
“To put it quite simply, we’ve just got to score. We moved the ball really well on Sunday night – 400 yards of total offense – and you don’t ever really see that with just 16 points. We had a lot of field goals, and we just can’t do that. It’s just that simple. When we get down there, we have to execute and we have to make plays. So, just go score points. That’s what we’ve got to do.”
 
On how his knee feels now compared to Week 1:
“The farther you get away from surgery, the better you’ll feel. So I feel better every day.” 
 
On if teams will defend him differently after his success rushing on Sunday:
“I think teams will. Dallas did. They just put [Cowboys linebacker] Sean Lee in the middle and had him spy me the rest of the game. Teams will choose what they want to do. Dallas played a lot of man coverage there for most of the game – a lot of single-safety. They brought a lot of guys down in the box to stop Alfred [Morris] running the ball, and then when I started running the ball, they left Sean Lee in the middle of the field to spy me. That can open things up on the outside, so teams will have to pick their poison and pick what they want to take away. Whatever they take away, we have to go to the other thing and have to rely on that.”
 
On if the first four games influenced him to “cut loose” and run more:
“I know people will think that after the bye week I just felt better and that’s why I did it. It was just more of I feel like it’s what I have to do. That’s what I’ve always had to do. You have got to use every ability that you have. Break the pocket - we broke the pocket a couple times, hit some guys down the field with the defense collapsing on me. Then there’s a couple of times when you just take off and you go. It’s a healthy mix of that – a healthy mix of just executing the plays that are called, running the ball and then scoring touchdowns. You can’t – it’s just unacceptable to have [433] yards and not score as many touchdowns as we should have.”
 
On if having no preseason action is affecting his passing ability:
“No, I don’t feel that. We’ve had to throw the ball a lot more than we would like in dropback situation. At times we’ve executed and at times we haven’t. We’ve got to make sure that we don’t put ourselves in those situations where we have to throw the ball that many times – 40-50 times a game. That’s just not what we’re built to do. We’re built to do certain things and we can switch it up within that, but one of those is not dropping back 50 times a game.”
 
On if he is having fun despite the Redskins’ record:
“I think fans and people in general will sit there and say, ‘Well, you’re sitting there at 1-4.’ One of you guys asked me, ‘How’s life?’ And I say, ‘It’s great,’ because we get to come out here and play a game that we love. You can’t let anybody steal your joy. You can’t let your record steal your joy. The only way to get away from being 1-4 is to go out and win football games, and you do that by having fun. You come out to the practice field ready to go. You have a smile on your face. People say, ‘How can you smile when you’re sitting there at 1-4?’ Because that’s all you have to do. If I come out here with a frown on my face, no one’s going to want to be around me, no one is going to want to play hard for me. So I have to be that leader in that respect and put that smile on my face and get the energy up in practice so we can get ourselves out of this hole.”
 
On the impact a win against Chicago could have in turning turn the season around:
“It’s big. It’s big for us to get a win. There’s no doubt about it. We’ve got to go out there with the mindset that there’s no way we going to lose this game. Chicago’s going to come in here and try not to let us win that game, but it’s not even about them. They’re a great team. They’ve got a lot of great players. We’ve just got to go out there and accept the challenge, and not just go out there and compete. We’ve got to go out there to win.”
 
On tight end Jordan Reed’s emergence:
“I got to spend a lot of time with Jordan in the offseason. He was recovering from an injury as well, so he was a friendly target for me to get some reps in and he’s just done a great job of learning fast. He’s a dynamic player –
great after the catch, great hands – a guy that has a wide catch radius. The greatest thing he’s done is he just accepted his role early in the year and he took his catches here and there, took his plays here and there, and now that he’s becoming more of a starter for us, he can be dynamic. There’s definitely ways you can use him, not only in the pass game – he’s a good blocker too. That’s the great thing. He’s just not a guy you bring in in throwing situations and throw him the ball. He’s a guy you can put in there and keep teams off-balance because he’ll run block too.”
 
On the unnecessary roughness penalties called against opponents who hit him along the sidelines:
“I think I was trying to draw the penalty on [Lions defensive back] Rashean [Mathis] there and he’s a smart player. He didn’t hit me. Good for him, move on from that. In a rivalry game against the Cowboys, [safety] Barry Church is not going to pull off from that. I gave him a little move there before I went out of bounds, but I was clearly out of bounds. He hit me and it does suck, but some guys are going to take those penalties. It’s hard to walk that line and you’ve always got to try to protect yourself. I know I was going out of bounds another time and [Cowboys cornerback] Brandon Carr went low at my legs, not anything dirty, but I had to move out of the way and you’ve just got to be aware of those things. The sideline is your friend and you can get out of bounds at the sideline, but a lot of defensive players, they just really don’t care. Sometimes they’re going to still get that hit on you.”
 
On his relationship with Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman:
“Charles hates when I tell this story, but he came back to [Griffin and Tillman’s hometown of Copperas] Cove when I was in seventh grade and played basketball with us so it was pretty cool. I was a young kid. I was excited to meet Charles Tillman from Copperas Cove, Texas, and he’s always been a great guy. He came back a lot. [He] spent time with us, gave us a lot of advice. He’s a guy that I talk to, a big inspiration, and he’s a great player. I look forward to playing against him in a regular season game. He’s got great instincts. He’s one of their best players, but we can’t allow him to do what he does best just like they’re going to try to stop us from doing what we do best.”
 
On if there are opportunities to gain extra yards when defenders pull up along the sidelines:
“There is that opportunity sometimes, but the two situations that we’re talking about, I don’t think there was. With Rashean, I kind of stopped well inside inbounds to try to get him to hit me and he didn’t. He said, ‘I’m not taking that penalty, Griff,’ and I said, ‘I got you, man.’ With Barry, it was more I was out of bounds. I didn’t slow down at all. I kind of gave him a move and stepped out of bounds and he hit me. There will be situations and I think that is why guys don’t want to pull up. I think it’s happened in the past. I don’t know with Mike Vick or someone like that who has run to the sidelines, stopped, and then gotten 20 more yards because the guy runs out of bounds trying not to hit the quarterback, so that could be a reason.”
 
On the success his alma mater Baylor has had since he left in 2011:
“Coach [Art] Briles is a great coach. He talked to me when I was there and he told me some coaches can get you to play for them, and he’s a coach that can get you to play for him and with him. He’s a great motivator. He’s got a great staff there, and it was a foundation. When we got there, we went 4-8, and then we went 4-8 again. Then we went 7-6, 10-3, and they’re continuing to rise and continuing to do well. The foundation was built, a lot of the guys that I went to school with skill-position-wise and even offensive lineman are in the league today or were at one time. They get players, they develop them and it’s about a choice. You’ve got to make a choice if you want to be great and that’s what they teach there.”
 
On how the Bears’ defense has changed since the departure of former head coach Lovie Smith:
“I’ve only been in the league one year. I know Lovie. Lovie is a great coach and he definitely left them some players that can definitely ball out for the Bears. They’ve got a lot of great personnel. [Defensive end Julius] Peppers is still one of the best. [Linebacker] Lance Briggs can bring it. They’ve got guys all around the field. Tim Jennings, Charles Tillman, you know, their safeties, their other linebackers. They just have a lot of playmakers on the field on defense and we have to be able to rise up to the challenge and take advantage of it.”
 
On how much is on receivers to create separation in press coverage or on him to throw them open:
“It is up to us. We have to make the difference. They’re going to see that Dallas played us in man coverage and that we didn’t have the separation when we needed it and I didn’t make the throws when we needed it at times either. We have to be able to make that difference. I talked to the receivers about it already this week and we’ll do that. If they’re going to come up and press us or if they’re going to play off, whatever they decide to do, we have to be ready to take advantage of that, so it is on us.”
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