Posted December 12, 2013

Kyle Shanahan disagrees with decision to bench Robert Griffin III for rest of season

NFC East, Washington Redskins
Kyle Shanahan and Robert Griffin III aren't on board with Mike Shanahan's latest decision.

Kyle Shanahan (left) and Robert Griffin III aren’t on board with Mike Shanahan’s latest decision. (Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

If you thought things couldn’t get any stranger with the Washington Redskins … well, think again. And if you were under the impression that offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan was on board with every decision made by head coach and father Mike … well, that would be wrong, too. Shanahan the Elder’s decision to bench quarterback Robert Griffin III for the rest of the season out of concern for his health was announced on Wednesday.

Not a huge surprise — Shanahan had been making noises about keeping Griffin out of harm’s way for the last three games of the 2013 regular season because he’d taken 24 sacks in his last five games, and the head coach wanted his quarterback to have the full offseason he didn’t have in 2013 due to knee surgery.

That Shanahan will most likely not be Griffin’s head coach in 2014 wasn’t relevant to the story, but Kyle Shanahan’s public response to the Griffin benching became a bigger story when he spoke with the media on Thursday afternoon.

“I’ve got zero involvement in that,” he said.  “I actually game-planned for both [Griffin and new starter Kirk Cousins] all Tuesday.  It was a little frustrating to game plan for both.  I was told the final decision Wednesday morning, then rolled with it.”

Leaving your own offensive coordinator in the lurch until just before the public is made aware adds to the cavalier way in which Mike Shanahan has seemed to handle this drama. Never mind holding such important news from your own son!

And if Kyle Shanahan was supposed to toe the party line about the decision, he certainly did anything but.

“I think if the decision was about football, you would have talked with your offensive coordinator,” he said. “But this doesn’t have to do with football — it has to do with the future of an organization. That’s out of my realm — it has to do with a GM and an owner. … In a game, the process of whether a player goes down or comes out for a play or not, you don’t know whether he’s hurt. The doctors come up and tell you whether you have him or not, and you don’t ask questions. You just keep calling plays. I’ve never seen a coach take a player out of a game when he says he’s healthy, and the doctor says he’s healthy, unless he wants to play the backup.

“I definitely made it clear I was disappointed in that …  I think it would be good for Robert to get the reps.”

It’s just another episode in what certainly seems to be the NFL’s weirdest miniseries in 2013.

20 comments
TChara
TChara

Will anyone have enough character to speak the obvious. In a league with over 80% player diversity this reveals another troubling dirty secret in the NFL. Compared to what RG3 received K.Cousins didn't even get his Jersey soiled. Coach &son sent a clear message to potential buyers. After setting up the shutdown with vicious media leaks from Incognito style locker room, coach called O line protections and plays that resulted in record sacks for RG3. Just as McNabb warned with media speak about QB being unable to Read because of his College! Coach doubled players practice after shutdown. Compared to what RG3 received K.Cousins didn't even get his Jersey soiled. Coach &son sent a clear message to potential owners for this coaching service in the league. This was not a players audition but a Coach & Son audition. All Cousins had to do was drop back with time to read a book read the open man & throw. It was shameful. The O line even blocked behind him at times, no chance of him being kicked in the groin. With more Afri.Amer. QB's coming out of college, perhaps another Heisman,into a system with less than 3% QB diversity, times are desperate to maintain shameful status quo. Coach advertised ideal system for weeding out the RG3,J Freeman's, T Pryors, V.Young, D McNabb, M Vick that we prayed would have the opportunities that B Favre & K Warner had. Bring back Christian coaches and players before all integrity is lost. Thanks M. Irvin J Madden K Warner for integrity.

godfather361
godfather361

The Washington DC football club drama is so fascinating.  This ranks right up there with Amanda Bynes, Lindsay Lohan, and the Dallas Cowboys.  The Eagles and Giants have such an advantage on so many teams in the NFL in that on any given year, it's a competition against at most 3 teams in the division as one of the two (DC or Cowboys) are bound to be a disgrace cause of their owners.

George
George

Watch a long-time franchise melt down into destruction.


SNYDER'S gotta' go.  Time for fan boycotts.  It's the only thing that will force Dan-the-midget to sell the team.

dandogwood
dandogwood

Kyle shanahan has no business coaching in the NFL. A joke unworthy of being in the NFL.

blacksaber79
blacksaber79

Ok...so we sit RGIII because he is getting pounded. Sounds fair. But I have a question for people who watch Washington on a regular basis. Is the O-line the reason RGIII has gotten pounded, the QB holding the ball too long, or a combination of both.


And IF its the O-line, is putting a high quality back up in the line of fire any better than the current situation?

Skins'Fan
Skins'Fan

WORST Offensive Co-ordinator in the league. FIRE THE SHANAHANS - or at least Kyle...

rentistoohigh
rentistoohigh

Clearly this is all a conspiracy to force a team name change...and bring in Tim Tebow


Alex Jones !!! get on this for me will you ? LOLOL

DougBeers
DougBeers

Sounds like Dad's written off his future with the organization and wants to get fired to keep his contract money, while telling son to go ahead and go public with a disagreement in order to keep his own job or maybe jockey for the replacement.  If Kyle is still getting along with RGIII wouldn't he automatically be in line to at least stay on with the new staff?

PhillyPenn
PhillyPenn

Wow, the dysfunction, lack of communication, and seeming bitter resentment emanating out of the Skins this year is epic.  God Bless Daniel Snyder (and old Leatherface Jones in Dallas :)

PaulKelly
PaulKelly

Today's reporters skew everything to make a headline sound like an exclusive, breathless, dark, admission. If the head coach is really making the decisions then the OC just has to live with it and make his adjustments. Sounds like this is what happened. If what the reporter says is true then Christmas will probably be tense at the Shanahan homesteads. Ha, that bag of coal is from me Dad, just so you know for sure, ha ha. We as readers, get tidbits of a five minute conversation, laced together to sound inflammatory.  There is no doubt there is a ton of tension surrounding the Redskins but the long term seems to be correct to sit RG3. He is getting pounded and it has been two years of it. Hopefully the Skins can assemble a reasonable front four that can block and in the off season they can teach Robert to get rid of the ball. Some of these sacks, Robert has walked right into even when the line has given nice protection. Hope the Skins peace out for the next three and Cousins plays so "dynomite" that they can trade him for some offensive studs.

ParishToni1
ParishToni1

From his comments, it makes you wonder if the call to bench (or save) Griffin was truly Shanahan's decision or owner Snyder's. Can't see Kyle calling out his dad on this decision.  But I can see it bothering him if Snyder made the suggestion.

champdailey24
champdailey24

Standing up to his father with minimal whining demonstrates that young Kyle is becoming a man.

John458
John458

It absolutely amazes me as to the mass of poisonous press that seem to pounce ALL over everything that is said by the coaches coming out of Redskins Park.  The total misrepresentation of the facts of the actual comments (in this case this Kyle) .. is disappointing and alarming as to the agenda that some in the press have against this organization.

Been a lifelong fan, it IS disappointing as to what has transpired this year, I am not happy as to many of the decisions that have been made... but even less happy with the lack of professional journalism 

Michael39
Michael39

This is far from shocking.  Daddy is going to get fired soon and Kyle has to convince other teams that he is an actual OC, not just nepotism run amok.

randomdeletion
randomdeletion

That is what you guys consider "blasts"?  What a joke. 

PhillyPenn
PhillyPenn

@champdailey24 sounds like he's doing a lot of whining to the media, not to his dad.  if he did it to his dad would demonstrate he's becoming a man.

Skins'Fan
Skins'Fan

@John458Couldn't agree more but the same can be said in Markets like New York and Los Angeles where they're torn apart. Skins' are a banner franchise for the league, same as Dallas for better or worse. Jerry takes care of the media side much better than Snyder though since he's the GM too. Everyone knows Snyder wants the same so he micro-manages and it's blown this season apart with a strong-minded head coach. 

Sitting him is the right call though. Plus we can showcase Cousins' talent and maybe get a 2nd round value out of him like Philly has down time-and-again.