Washington Redskins

Ravens sign RGIII as Flacco's backup

Ravens sign RGIII as Flacco's backup

Robert Griffin III, the quarterback who was out of football last season after being cut by the Cleveland Browns, has signed a one-year contract with the Baltimore Ravens, the team announced.

Griffin, 28, a star at Baylor and the 2012 NFL offensive rookie of the year with the Washington Redskins, will be brought in as a backup to Joe Flacco. He last started an NFL game for the Browns in Week 17 of the 2016 season. 

The No. 2 pick of Washington in 2012, an ACL injury at the end of his rookie season led to injury struggles for the rest of his time with the Redskins. He was benched in favor of Kirk Cousins in 2015 and cut by Washington in 2016.

"He's a very talented quarterback who's had a lot of success in this league early on," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said, via NFL.com. "So we're excited about it. We felt like we needed a No. 2 quarterback. You look at the veteran quarterbacks out there ... I mean, where we're at right now, I'm pretty excited about this player. I'm really feeling like we got a steal."

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Chiefs reach agreement to trade Alex Smith to Washington

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File photo

Chiefs reach agreement to trade Alex Smith to Washington

WASHINGTON -- Kansas City has agreed to trade quarterback Alex Smith to Washington, a move that spells the end of Kirk Cousins' time with the Redskins and hands the Chiefs' job to Patrick Mahomes.

Two people with direct knowledge of the deal confirmed the move to The Associated Press on Tuesday night on condition of anonymity because the transaction can't be completed until the start of the new league year in March. One person told the AP the Redskins had agreed to a four-year extension with Smith, who had one year left on his contract.

Smith, who turns 34 in May, spent the past five seasons with the Chiefs, leading them to the playoffs four times while throwing for 102 touchdowns and 33 interceptions. He carries a $17 million salary-cap hit for 2018.

Kansas City saves cap space and can turn to Mahomes, the 10th pick in last year's draft out of Texas Tech, as its new starter.

Smith becomes Washington's new franchise quarterback after throwing for 31,888 yards and 183 touchdowns in 12 NFL seasons with the San Francisco 49ers and Chiefs.

Smith is "one of the best competitors and teammates I've ever been around," Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce posted on Twitter. "Someone who I owe a lot of my success to, and a guy that's been a class act through all the ups n downs."

The Redskins acquired Smith and signed him to the kind of long-term deal they balked at with Cousins, who became the first QB to play back-to-back seasons on the franchise tag. Cousins can become a free agent next month at age 29.

"Nothing really surprises me anymore," Redskins tight end Niles Paul tweeted . Former Redskins QB Robert Griffin III tweeted : "Some how...Some way...they will blame this on me. No doubt."

Cousins, drafted by the Redskins in the fourth round out of Michigan State in 2012 - the same year they traded up to Griffin with the No 2 pick - likely leaves Washington with the fourth-most passing yards in franchise history, more than 16,000.

Under coach Jay Gruden, Cousins became the first Redskins QB to start all 16 games for three consecutive seasons. He threw for at least 4,000 yards in each, while totaling 81 touchdowns and 36 interceptions. But Washington only played in one playoff game during that span, going 9-7, 8-7-1 and, most recently, 7-9 in Cousins' time as a starter.

Cousins has been the biggest question hovering over Washington's offseason - and, indeed, hovering over the whole organization for a couple of years as the team failed to sign him to a long-term deal.

According to ESPN, Washington is sending a third-round draft pick and cornerback Kendall Fuller to Kansas City in the trade, which cannot be finalized until March 14. The Kansas City Star first reported the deal.

This is the second time a team coached by Andy Reid has traded a 33-year-old QB to the Redskins. Reid's Philadelphia Eagles dealt Donovan McNabb to Washington in 2010 for second- and third-round picks.

Rivers leads Chargers to 4th straight win, 30-13 over Redskins

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Rivers leads Chargers to 4th straight win, 30-13 over Redskins

CARSON, Calif. - Although the Los Angeles Chargers' offense is constantly running over its opponents these days, Philip Rivers wasn't sure how he ended up as a lead blocker for receiver Travis Benjamin on a 22-yard reverse run .

"Gracious, I've never been this far down the field in my life since high school," Rivers thought to himself as he looked for somebody to hit - and his coaches cringed.

But just about everything the Chargers do is working out well lately. After a 30-13 rout of the Redskins on Sunday for their fourth straight victory, they're finding themselves in prime position to compete for a playoff spot.

After their 0-4 start, that's something that seemed even more unlikely than Rivers becoming a blocker.

Rivers passed for 319 yards and two touchdowns, and the Chargers continued their ferocious playoff push with their seventh win in nine games.

Tyrell Williams caught a 75-yard touchdown pass and Hunter Henry had another scoring grab for the Chargers (7-6), who have been largely outstanding ever since that rocky start to their relocation season. This one wasn't in much doubt for the Chargers as they took a 24-point lead and racked up 429 yards of offense midway through the third quarter.

"It's exactly where we want to be," said Williams, who had four catches for 132 yards. "We hold our own destiny."

While outscoring their opponents 131-53 during their winning streak, the Chargers also moved above .500 for the first time since September 2015 with a dominant offensive performance against Washington.

With their fourth straight home victory, the Chargers stayed atop the AFC West alongside the Chiefs (7-6), their opponents Saturday in Kansas City.

"I want players to always know what they're playing for, and right now, we're playing for our division," Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said.

Kirk Cousins hit Vernon Davis with an early TD pass for the Redskins (5-8), who have lost two straight and six of eight. Washington was officially eliminated from playoff contention with three games to go, and this effort rankled several veterans.

"There's no excuse why we're playing like this, because we've played good in the past," Washington safety D.J. Swearinger said. "You've got to prepare for when you step out on the field Sunday, or you're going to get embarrassed. We got embarrassed today, so guys didn't prepare. Guys didn't take it in. ... We've definitely taken steps back (on defense). We had 30 put on us today. Dallas put (38) on us last week. We've taken major steps back."

Although Bashaud Breeland returned an interception of Kellen Clemens' pass 96 yards for a touchdown with 2:36 to play, Washington's defense had few answers.

"I'm at a loss for words, quite honestly," Redskins coach Jay Gruden said. "I never thought we'd get beat like this two weeks in a row."

Melvin Gordon rushed for a third-quarter score before several Los Angeles regulars took most of the fourth quarter off, banking rest for Saturday.

They earned it: Rivers' offense played with confidence and flair, executing reverses and flea-flickers while thoroughly entertaining a crowd with distinctly fewer fans of the opposition than in the Chargers' first few games at StubHub Center.

Los Angeles jumped to a 13-0 lead while scoring on its first three drives and getting a first-quarter interception by Kyle Emanuel, but Washington kept it close by forcing two field goals.

But on the Chargers' first snap after Davis' TD catch, Rivers hit Williams deep downfield for an untouched, 75-yard score.

MISSED CHANCE

Los Angeles had a 23-6 lead when it drove 81 yards in the final 1:25 before halftime. The Chargers only missed out on even more points because Austin Ekeler was tackled on a 33-yard run at the Washington 4 as time ran out. Lynn blamed Ekeler for risking a run to end zone despite knowing he needed to get down.

KEENAN AGAIN

Keenan Allen had six catches for 111 yards in his quietest performance during the Bolts' four-game winning streak. He still set single-season career highs for receptions and yards during the first half for Los Angeles.

BIG PHIL

Rivers passed for 256 yards in the first half. He also moved ahead of Warren Moon for ninth place in NFL history in career yards passing. During the four-game winning streak, Rivers has passed for 1,348 yards with eight touchdowns and no interceptions.

INJURIES

Redskins: Kick returner Byron Marshall's leg buckled underneath him while he moved to field a kickoff in the first quarter. He injured his hamstring and didn't return. ... Key LB Zach Brown sprained his toe in the second half and left in a walking boot. He blamed the StubHub Center turf: "That field is crap. It's made for soccer." ... LB Chris Carter broke his leg in the second half.

Chargers: Left tackle Russell Okung went down heavily in the first quarter and limped off the field with a knee injury. He returned later in the first half, however.

UP NEXT

Redskins: Host the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.

Chargers: Travel to Kansas City on short rest for a first-place showdown with the Chiefs on Saturday.