Bruce Allen spoke to ESPN 950's Al Coleman in Richmond today on a variety of topics. The one quote that got everyone's attention was when he talked about Robert Griffin III's 2013 season. Michael Phillips of the Richmond Times-Dispatch was the first to report it. Host Big Al prompted the comment by talking about the mental and physical aspects of football working together, and the game being second nature to a player.
"What you saw last year was almost a little disrespectful to the game of football," Allen said. "It's impossible to ask a player to perform well during the regular season if you haven't practiced. Last year at this time, he was still rehabbing his knee, and he wasn't allowed to practice or work in team drills.
"We put him on the spot by trying to do that. And this year he's had a full offseason, his knee is 100 percent, knock on wood, and he's had all (the practices), and that's how you get ready to play a football season."
You can always debate when a player is ready to come back, whether they are healthy, and who's decision that should be. Griffin made it his goal to come back by Week 1, and fans were more than ready to see their star QB healthy and beating the division rival Philadelphia Eagles in Week 1. Coach Mike Shanahan seemed to try to temper expectations and defer the decision of whether he was ready to Dr. James Andrews and others. Griffin was not cleared for preseason games but would be in his full game uniform on the sidelines, presumably getting mentally prepared and sending a message that he was ready to play. It's easy for Bruce Allen to say RGIII wasn't ready last season, but he was a part of the Redskins front office last season who does have some influence with Dan Snyder. Hindsight is a beautiful thing.
[UPDATE: 1:50PM 7/30/14] RGIII responds to the Bruce Allen comments.
"I saw what Bruce said and I know where he's coming from," Griffin said. "That was the previous coach's prerogative. I can't do anything about that. All I can do is fly with the punches. Like I said on multiple times, I played the hand I was dealt last year and now we're all ready to move on and move forward with this year, with a new regime. I'm more than glad I'm able to practice all offseason and in camp with no stress and just get better with my guys."