Shanahan: Redskins will take it slow with RG3

Shanahan: Redskins will take it slow with RG3
July 24, 2013, 6:30 pm
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RG3 lays out his training camp workout plan

RICHMOND – For the first time since having his knee reconstructed in January, Robert Griffin III will be an official participant in practice when training camp opens on Thursday. But it could be a while before he’s under center, directing the first team offense during the “team” portion of daily drills, Coach Mike Shanahan said in an exclusive interview with CSN Washington’s Chick Hernandez. 

“We’re going to be very cautious with him,” Shanahan told Hernandez on Wednesday afternoon at the Bon Secours training center. “We’re going to get him back into football shape. It will be day-by-day. But it makes you feel good that he’s worked as hard as he has to put himself in position [to be] where he’s at.”

Shanahan also said it’s far too early to begin speculating about Griffin’s availability for game action – preseason or regular season. 

“What we’re going to do first is make sure he’s in football shape,” the coach said. “You can’t talk about a preseason game, or a regular season game, until you watch him develop. We know that he’s in position now to do football-related drills, and he can do them with a lot more sense of urgency than he did when he was going through treatment." 

For now, though, Griffin will not participate in the 11-on-11 portion of practice. Too much can go wrong, Shanahan said.

“We aren’t going to put him in ‘team’ situations,” Shanahan said. “Initially, you just can’t. It’s going to take some time. People need to understand, when we practice, we practice at a game-type speed. So when you practice, it’s just like playing a game. …You don’t want to put him in that situation until he’s ready. There’s defensive ends, linebackers, blitzes, so many things that occur when you’re going through a team practice.”

Asked if Griffin has lobbied to play in the preseason, Shanahan seemed to indicate that he has.

“Everybody wants to play,” he told Hernandez. “That’s a problem you want.”

Asked about the controversy that enveloped the Redskins after a hobbled Griffin was knocked out of the playoff loss to Seattle, Shanahan said it was a learning experience for the player and the coach. 

“You’re always looking back, did you make the right decision?” he said. “If you did it again, would you make the same decision? …You talk to the player, you talk to the doctor, and at the end of the day, when it’s over it’s over. You get ready for the next year.”

Shanahan added: “I learn every year. …What you try to do is make sure that your communication with the players is as good as it can be. Players have got to be honest with you, and you have to be honest with your players. Players grow. Coaches grow. That’s what you’re looking for: you’re looking for honesty.”