An NFL locker room is a workplace. Players come off the field, have a chat with their coaches and each other, shower and talk to the media before going home. That's typically it.
Outside visitors are rare. This is not like backstage at a concert — you do not often see anyone but players, coaches, team employees and officials, and media members in locker rooms. Everyone is either working, or they just got through doing so.
[Photos: Athletes giving back for Thanksgiving]
That's why when Robert Griffin II, the father of Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, appeared in the Redskins' locker room after their 27-6 dismantling at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers, it created a mini-stir.
RGIII's dad came to check on his son in the locker room after the game. He sat in on the press conference too, but he's done that many times
— Mike Jones (@MikeJonesWaPo) November 26, 2013
Yes, I found it different as others did that Griffin's dad was at his locker after the game. Think I've seen him in pressers b4 after games — John Keim (@john_keim) November 26, 2013
I was quite surprised to see Robert Griffin's dad in the locker room post-game. Looked like QB was surprised his dad was in locker room too.
— Grant Paulsen (@granthpaulsen) November 26, 2013
With all the negative energy around RG3 past week, last thing was dad in locker room. Wait in the hall like everyone else out of sight. — Rick Snider (@Snide_Remarks) November 26, 2013
These are examples of the observations of four talented and experienced media members who cover the Redskins on a daily basis. Snider's last point — that everyone else waits in the hall — is worth noting. Family members, whether they are celebrities or the quarterback's dad or not, almost always wait outside.
It's rare to see exceptions. Occasionally celebrities find their way in. Teams have allowed certain children into locker rooms at times, but they often are whisked away after a short spell. There are probably other exceptions, though it's hardly common.
But to Snider's other point, this was no ordinary week. The white-hot glare on the team right now is impossible to miss, and the sight of an outsider hanging around the locker room after a brutal loss might have upset a few players.
Then again, it might not have. A few players have been critical of RG3, but there seems to be strong support otherwise in the locker room. This story probably doesn't get told if the Redskins win Monday night, or if they were 8-3 instead of 3-8. And there's no question that anything out of the ordinary surrounding Griffin right now is going to be blown up more than almost any other player right now.
[Watch: Shutdown Corner power rankings]
Beyond that, it's not going to change the way the Redskins are playing. This might be the least of their considerable list of current worries.
- - - - - - -
- American Football
- Sports & Recreation
- Robert Griffin III