Tony Dungy wants him benched and every NFL analyst and sports writer in the country insists that he is not healthy. What's the real issue, lets look a little deeper.
As we all have heard this week from various sources, Adrian Peterson didn't start transforming into his super-human self until week 6 or 8 last season. Tom Brady a few years ago was sluggish for the first 6 games or so in his comeback year. I think Rodney Harrison hit the nail on the head to one of Griffin's issues on his Sunday Night Football breakdown. Rodney said he himself had an ACL tear and the year he came back he was scared to death. Now, I'm not suggesting that RG3 is scared to death but it sounds like his knee feels and reacts different than last year and he is still learning how to play on it. However, he probably is scared to death with the d-line and his o-line guy go falling towards his knees, his 3rd ACL tear will most likely be a career-ender and he knows that. My gut feeling is Dr. Andrew's "concerns" Shannahan was talking about were the fact that Griffin needs to run out of bounds more often and if he does tear it again his career is over.
In short, I think a lot of Griffins issues are in his head but not all of them. He knows he isn't invincible anymore but now he just has to feel comfortable and confident playing on his knee, a la Adrian Peterson and Tom Brady. He spent the entire off-season rehabbing and if you watched the ESPN special like i did, you had to be blown away at his determination and will. In the special he proves that physically he is in great shape by exceeding any expectation they put on him. So we can only assume there is nothing physically wrong with him. I think he wants to be a more traditional type passer now (RG2 has said this and there has been some reports RG3 feels the same way) and there is nothing wrong with that. I think RG3 and his dad both realize he will be in the league a lot longer if he can play as a more traditional type quarterback and there is no reason why he shouldn't. So this aligns with the idea that It seems that the offense is shifting away from the read option stuff but in my opinion hasn't quite settled into the traditional bootleg type offense Shannahan is known for, they are stuck in the middle.
I just saw something NFL.com that said Pierre Garcon said RG3 is not as fast as he was last year. His reasoning is his knee brace, i think that is a very accurate statement. Last year when RG3 put on the brace everyone noticed a slower RG3 but i think most of us were assuming it was because his knee was hurt. There is no doubt in my mind that playing in that brace has to be awkward, it most likely limits his mobility and is uncomfortable but i don't see him not wearing it for the rest of the season.
Finally, its not all on him. The Redskins are struggling in all 3 aspects of the game. Part of the offensive issues are the running game hasn't gotten off the ground early in the game like last year. Griffin has been inaccurate at times but almost all of the receivers have dropped balls that hit them in their hands. Jon Gruden was blaming RG3's mechanics, i believe the awkward brace is playing apart in his mechanics but i also think he is shorting his stride at times to avoid the bodies that are flying at him because the offensive line isn't doing their job (except for Trent Williams).
I think the defense is struggling because for a few reasons, first they are on the field too long because the offense cant get anything going. Second, Amerson and Rambo have been abused early and often by both the Eagles and Packers. Every team knows the secondary is the Redskins weakness and they have inexperience in the backfield and they are paying for it. Lastly, they need to tackle! I have never seen that many miss-tackles in my life! I don't know what you do about that, they are Pro's they should know how to tackle.
As for special teams, Sav Rocca has had some really bad punts, really bad. I don't know what his issue is but he seems to be kicking us while we are down (no pun intended). Kai missing that field goal in the Eagles game was like adding insult to injury, he was so automatic last year. Now with him injured the John Potter's attempt in Green Bay was just laughable.
Then there is the personal fouls, i wont go there. We all know the Redskins have had an issue with personal fouls, they cost games (*cough*cough* Josh Morgan the rams game last year) and they need to be eliminated.
So what is the solution? I think RG3 needs some time to really get accustom to the speed of the game again and whatever version of the offense they want to run now and figure out a way to not let that brace slow him down too much. The offense needs to get into a rhythm at the beginning of the game and once that happens I believe the defense will start to look and play better. I don't think its time to hit the panic button on this season yet, if they come out of the bye and things have not improved then maybe it will be time for Shannahan to pull out the "its time to evaluate players for next year" from his back pocket.