Is Robert Griffin III’s NFL Career On The Verge Of Being Over?
If we told you that Robert Griffin III’s NFL career was going to be over within five years of him being drafted in 2012, you would have called us crazy. And rightfully so. RGIII won the Heisman Trophy in 2011 during his junior season at Baylor before being selected with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. He then put together a spectacular rookie season with the Washington Redskins—setting records by recording the highest passer rating ever by a rookie quarterback at 102.4 and assembling the highest touchdown to interception ratio for a rookie at 4:1—and helped lead the team to its first postseason berth since 2007. And even though a severe knee injury knocked him out of the playoffs that year, the belief was that he still had a very bright future ahead of him.
But things didn’t go as planned for RGIII following his rookie campaign. After missing the entire 2013 NFL preseason, RGIII got thrown back into the mix during the regular season and looked like a shell of his former self. Then-Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan eventually pulled him from the starting lineup and replaced him with backup Kirk Cousins. RGIII then endured the same struggles through the 2014 and 2015 seasons, and by the end of his fourth year in the league, RGIII wasn’t even suiting up for games anymore. The Redskins eventually decided to part ways with him in March 2016, and it was suddenly unclear what the future held for the former star quarterback.
Fortunately for RGIII, he ended up getting another opportunity about two weeks after the Redskins released him when the Cleveland Browns signed him to a new deal. He inked a two-year contract with the team, and it appeared as though he would be able to start over again in a new city. But unfortunately, his stint with the Browns very well could be over before it even really started. On Sunday, during his first regular season game with Cleveland, he sustained a shoulder injury that will sideline for at least the next eight games. And because RGIII struggled in Sunday’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles and struggled in the preseason as well, he may never earn his starting QB job back with the Browns—and the Browns could choose to cut ties with him after this season.
If the Browns decide to do that, where does RGIII turn next? Outside of Cleveland, there was very little interest in RGIII in the offseason. So he could end up without a team and on the outside of the NFL looking in this winter. It seems crazy to think that that could happen to him less than five years after first joining the NFL, but it’s very possible that we may have just seen RGIII play in his final pro football game.