For quite some time it has been obvious that Robert Griffin III would be ready to start the first game of the season. Tonight the obvious was confirmed by Dr. James Andrews.
"I did talk to Dr. Andrews,” said Mike Shanahan following the Redskins’ preseason game in Tampa. “He did talk to Robert and after talking to him. He did clear Robert to play."
But Shanahan did not confirm that Griffin would start against the Eagles on Sept. 9. He noted that Andrews had “a couple of concerns” and he said that he would talk to Griffin over the weekend and that he would “let you know on Monday where we’re at.”
Shanahan would not specify what Andrews’ “concerns” were, only saying that he would discuss them with Griffin before making a final decision on naming him the starter.
Last week Shanahan said that while he would certainly abide what Andrews recommended if the famed orthopedic surgeon said that Griffin couldn’t play. But he wouldn’t necessarily give Griffin the green light even if Andrews did.
“If Dr. Andrews said to me, ‘Hey, I don’t think Robert’s ready,’ I surely wouldn’t put Robert out there,” he said. “But Dr. Andrews could tell me that he is ready, and if I thought something was wrong with Robert through our practice, I wouldn’t put him out there.”
Before the game tonight, Griffin worked out running, cutting, and throwing passes under the watchful eye of Andrews. The those two and a small entourage trainers and other doctors went under the stadium after that, presumably for Andrews to administer a final “hands on” examination in the training room under the stands. Griffin emerged and watched the game from the sideline but there was no indication as to whether Andrews gave him the thumbs up or thumbs down. Andrews referred inquiries to the team.
That date of the season opener is exactly eight months after reconstructive surgery on Griffin’s right knee. The league’s offensive rookie of the year tore his ACL and had other ligament damage in the Redskins’ playoff loss to the Seahawks a few days before Dr. Andrews went in and performed the repair surgery.
- Rich Tandler, CSN Washington