The Washington Redskins, Mike Shanahan and Robert Griffin III haven't won many games this season, but they've been incredibly productive in leaking stories to the media about each other.
The latest comes from Jason Cole at Bleacher Report. In this episode of the NFL's most melodramatic soap opera, multiple team sources want the world to know that Griffin is stubborn and his father is meddling.
The most startling revelation in the story is that Griffin's father has been telling owner Daniel Snyder to hire Baylor coach Art Briles. Griffin, the Redskins' quarterback, played for Briles in college.
"In recent weeks, according to two sources close to the situation, the elder Griffin has politicked Snyder to hire Baylor coach Art Briles, who coached the younger Griffin to a Heisman Trophy, to replace Shanahan," according to the Bleacher Report story.
Stories like this are harmful in a few ways, but that's probably the point.
It paints Griffin's father in a bad light. It makes the Redskins biggest superstar look bad, a complete turn from the glowing stories of 2012 when he was offensive rookie of the year. It also means that even if Briles was the best man to take over for Shanahan (assuming the coach will be fired, which seems like a foregone conclusion), hiring him would make it look like Snyder is giving in to Griffin's father's whims, and thereby letting his franchise quarterback call the shots in the organization. There are great reasons to hire Briles, a dynamic offensive coach who obviously knows how to get the most out of Griffin's talents. But now he would come to the Redskins with baggage.
Of course, the Bleacher Report brought about a round of denials, because the spin with the Redskins never ends.
— Mike Jones (@MikeJonesWaPo) December 18, 2013
What a mess.
There have also been stories about the Griffin family not being happy with Kyle Shanahan's play-calling in the playoff game against Seattle last year, when Griffin was gimpy and eventually blew out his knee. Griffin's father also got some headlines when he showed up in the Redskins locker room following a game against the 49ers in which his son got hit often.
The story also paints Griffin as not listening to coaches on things like poor footwork on throws this season. A source told Cole that Griffin "is not a bad kid," but that he "doesn’t listen right now."
The Redskins are a bad football team, that's clear. The constant anonymous bickering in the press makes it look like the worst organization in sports, too.
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