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Sunday, November 5, 2017

OPINION:

Maybe the only thing worse than a fraud playing the victim is a fraud playing the victim with no one paying attention.

Former Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III couldn’t stand that. So he broke out his martyr act again in social media and followed it up with a lengthy interview last week with 106.7 The Fan.


His passive-aggressive drama played out in local media once more, while at the same time he begged to be left alone.

He said he was to blame for his fall here in Washington, then proceeded to blame everyone else — except the one man most responsible for RG3’s failure in Washington.

He never mentioned Dan Snyder.

“I was drafted to a team with a coach who didn’t want me, with an organization that wasn’t sold on me,” Griffin said. “And I think when you make that many trades and trade that many picks, you don’t do that for a guy that you’re not sold on.”


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He was right about that — Mike Shanahan didn’t really want to make the trade — three first-round draft choices and a second-round pick — to the then-St. Louis Rams for the second pick in the draft, which turned out to be Griffin. He went along with it, but he thought the cost was too much.

As it turned out, thanks to the ill-advised move Allen to get out of the Albert Haynesworth contract cap hit that cost the franchise $36 million in salary cap penalty, the cost was far greater than Shanahan believed.

The organization, part, though, was wrong — if you define the organization by Snyder and his NFL credibility stooge, current team president and then-general manager Bruce Allen. They were reportedly positively giddy about the deal. So if being brought here against the wishes of the head coach is one of the reasons Griffin believed he failed, then his problem should be with those who still made the deal to bring him to Washington — Snyder and Allen.

“I felt like my time there was cut short, partially due to injury, partially due to some other things,” he said, failing to mention on the day of that playoff game against Seattle in January 2013 at FedEx Field, Griffin was caught on a microphone telling teammate Trent Williams not to tell Shanahan how injured he really was.

Then, as if this would absolve Griffin of his mostly self-inflicted demise, he continued, “And just the fact that at the end of the day, a coach (Jay Gruden) was brought in that didn’t believe in me and I didn’t really fit his system.”

So let’s think about this for a minute — Griffin is using as a defense that not one, but two different coaches, didn’t want him.

He is so twisted in his own victimhood.

Griffin chose his words carefully about the “meeting” that took place between himself and Shanahan after knee surgery following his remarkable rookie season in 2012. First, he acknowledged there was a meeting, then he stated, “Not once in that meeting did I ever say that I didn’t want to run the zone-read. Not once in that meeting did I ever say that I want to be a pure drop-back passer.”

He didn’t deny going over specific plays that he would not longer run — plays that were “unacceptable.”

That was the word, according to a 2016 ESPN story, proved to Shanahan that Snyder was destroying Griffin.

“When Robert is standing there going through all of that, I know it’s coming from Dan,” Shanahan said. “When Robert talked about ‘unacceptable,’ that was a word Dan used all the time. He was using phrases Dan used all the time. There’s only one way a guy who’s going into his second year would do something like this: If he sat down with the owner and the owner believed that this is the way he should be used. He had to have the full support of the owner and, in my opinion, the general manager to even have a conversation like that.”

So Shanahan said he went to Snyder’s office and said to the owner, “Do you realize what you’re doing to this kid?”

He was ruining Griffin — and if Griffin is pointing fingers, the main one should be at Dan Snyder — the man who set Griffin up as king of Redskins Park, who created a different set of rules and privileges for one player over all the others, the owner whose bought and paid for “friendship” with Griffin, like so many other things Snyder touches, turned ugly.

Thom Loverro hosts his weekly podcast “Cigars & Curveballs” Wednesdays available on iTunes, Google Play and the reVolver podcast network.

• Thom Loverro can be reached at tloverro@washingtontimes.com.


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