Although Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III has been medically cleared to play, coach Mike Shanahan was reluctant on Thursday to declare Griffin the starter for the regular season opener.
That may be because Dr. James Andrews has expressed concerns about how the team will use Griffin, a source told ESPN's Trey Wingo on Friday.
Andrews performed the reconstructive knee surgery on Griffin in January, and he cleared Griffin to resume playing after the Redskins' preseason finale Thursday at Tampa Bay.
But, according to the ESPN report, Andrews does not want the Redskins to expose Griffin's knee to excessive punishment during games. It's not clear which plays or type of plays concerned Andrews, but presumably it involves the read-option, which allows defenders to take a shot at Griffin.
In a text to ESPN 980's Chris Russell, Andrews didn't criticize the Redskins.
"He is in their hands," he said, referring to the Redskins. "They will take good care of him."
Neither of Griffin's injuries in 2012 occurred when he ran the read-option.
Shanahan and his son, offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, claim the zone read option protects Griffin. The Redskins adjusted their blocking schemes, using a fullback and tight end alongside Griffin in the pistol, with a running back behind him.
Shanahan said on Thursday he will wait until Monday to announce his starting quarterback.
"Dr. Andrews, after talking to him, he's going to approve Robert to play (Week 1)," Shanahan said on Thursday. "There's a couple of concerns that he has. I'll talk to Robert over the weekend, and I'll let you guys know on Monday."
Shanahan declined to provide specifics, saying he wants to speak with Griffin first. However, all signs continue to point toward Griffin being ready to play Week 1.
"Operation Patience....Complete. Cleared." Griffin tweeted Thursday.
Griffin called Shanahan's conservative plan to hold the quarterback out of preseason action "Operation Patience" during training camp.