NEW YORK – Robert Griffin III's dramatic rise to prominence might have raised the possibility of a draft-day shock that sees Andrew Luck toppled from the No.1 position that has long been considered his personal property. However, for Washington Redskins outside linebacker Brian Orakpo, any last-minute surprise that would take Luck to FedEx Field would only be a disappointment.
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Orakpo believes that while Luck enters the league as one of the most-hyped prospects in recent years, the Redskins, who pulled off a daring trade with the St. Louis Rams to land the second pick, would benefit far more from bringing Griffin into their organization.
"I would love to get Griffin," said Orakpo, speaking at a Nike event where the company unveiled new jersey designs for all 32 NFL teams. "Depending on what the Colts do."
The Redskins went a dismal 5-11 last season to finish at the bottom of the NFC East, and have not had a winning season since 2007. The club has blown through three quarterbacks under Mike Shanahan, with Donovan McNabb, Rex Grossman and John Beck all failing to shine.
While Orakpo has admiration for Luck and his skill set, he insisted that the Stanford man being chosen by the Indianapolis Colts with the top pick and Griffin then going to Washington would be the most beneficial outcome for all parties.
"It was all Andrew Luck but now the tide has turned," said Orakpo, who has 29 sacks in three NFL seasons. "It all depends on what the Colts want to do. It just seems like Luck sits with the Colts organization and scheme better and it seems that RG3 sits with our scheme better.
"That is because of the different offenses that we run, especially our offense. RG3 would fit perfectly with the bootleg action and all the different things we do. With the Colts and what they had with Payton [Manning] and the way they can just install Andrew Luck, they are going to get the same kind of guy. It seems more of a better fit all round."
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Colts owner Jim Irsay was widely assumed to have decided his franchise's future lay in Luck's hands when he bid farewell to Peyton Manning at a tearful news conference four weeks ago. However, Irsay has spoken positively at length about Griffin, who impressed scouts and front offices alike with both his explosive performance at the NFL scouting combine and his public persona and maturity.
Suddenly, Griffin is the new flavor of the month and Orakpo admits he is firmly on board the Griffin bandwagon.
"He is a guy on film that has shown flashes of the big arm, accurate passes, and he can move as well," Orakpo said. "He can scramble when he needs to. He is not looking to scramble, he is more of a pocket quarterback, but he can scramble if he needs to.
"Off the field, the guy is phenomenal. He is smart, intelligent, humble, every tool that it takes to be a great quarterback in this league. I am excited that we have the opportunity to get him. It is exciting times, especially for us. We have some great players in the locker room. We are a team that's on the rise and we can only get better.
"This could be it but we don't want to put too much pressure on one guy. We want to go in there, whoever it is, let him get better, let him run the system and take it from there. We pulled the trigger to make that move and we did it, and I am just ecstatic that we are going to get a phenomenal young guy come in to help us out."
Orakpo joined players from each NFL team in modeling the new team jerseys, which Nike has customized with revolutionary lightweight Flywire technology aimed at enhancing fit, comfort and moisture removal.
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