With a fresh start in Cleveland, ex-Redskins QB Robert Griffin III said he won't bring any baggage to the Browns, but he will be playing this fall with extra incentive after sitting out the entire 2015 season in Washington.
"I'm not trying to let any baggage hold me down from the past but I do have a massive chip on my shoulder," Griffin told assembled media at the Browns complex.
The saga of RG3 in D.C. is well told by now: The fall from 2012 Offensive Rookie of the Year to healthy but inactive third-string QB in 2015. Once free agency hit last month, Griffin shopped himself around before signing with the Browns, mainly sold on the chance to play for head coach Hue Jackson and offensive assistant head coach Pep Hamilton.
"I trust what Hue and Pep are gonna do with this offense, it won’t just be about me," Griffin said. "I just wanna play ball man."
For a player like Griffin to go a season without playing - without being injured - must have been very difficult to accept. And it seems to have made Griffin ready to buy in to any role his new coaches require, even if that means running the ball from the QB position.
"I'm not afraid to sit in the pocket and throw the ball. I'm not afraid of zone read. I'm not afraid to do what’s best for this team."
The zone read became the source of much consternation with the Redskins after RG3 was hurt in 2012. It's interesting to hear Griffin acknowledge that his legs can be a weapon, just a few seasons removed from his second major knee surgery.
"I had a whole year off so I feel good health wise," Griffin said.
Throughout Griffin's comments one consistent thread came through: His excitement about the new opportunity in Cleveland and that he is a different player, and person, than he was with the 'Skins.
"I've grown a lot since 2012," RG3 said. "I'm not oblivious to that fact, I know there are things I could have done different."
Eventually, it's unlikely Griffin will continue to be a story in D.C. Regardless of press coverage, though, it seems RG3 has already moved on.