Concern for the number of hits Robert Griffin III has absorbed over the first three weeks of the season reached a fever pitch Monday morning on sports talk radio, blogs and sports pages.But you know who insists hes not concerned about the seemingly inordinate number of times the Redskins quarterback has been forced to peel himself off the turf?Griffin.Rookie bravado? Perhaps. But his comments after Sundays 38-31 loss to the Bengals provided an interesting glimpse into his psyche.Ive never played scared in my life and it doesnt matter how many times I get hit, he said. Im going to continue to get back up. Even if they have to cart me off the field, Im going to get off the cart and walk away.On Sunday, the hits Griffin absorbed were a combination of game planning and poor protection. Griffin was sacked six times, and according to NFL stats, the Bengals laid 13 hits on him during pass attempts. Griffin also received a number of hits on the 12 times he carried the football, particularly on option plays.Through three games, Griffin has rushed 32 times, which puts him tied for 26thin the league. Hes the only quarterback on that list. Next, in fact, is Carolinas Cam Newton at No. 39 with 24.Coach Mike Shanahan pointed out after the game that just because a quarterback carries the ball it doesnt mean the run ends with a tackle or even a hit. But what cant be argued is that exposing Griffin so often drives up the probability that the franchises most important player will eventually absorb a blow resulting in injury.A lot of people outside of Redskins Park are worried.Griffin, however, is not.One is too many, to be honest, he said, asked how many hits constitutes too many. Im not trying to be funny. As a quarterback, youre a stationary target most of the time. When youre a mobile QB, the teams are still going to come after you even more because they feel like if they get a sack on a mobile quarterback, it counts as more. Thats just their mindset when they go into the game. Like I said, one is too many, but the one thing I wont do personally is quit of play scared.
Alex Smith in, Kirk Cousins out.
That's certainly the headline, but there are plenty of other questions for the Redskins, particularly on the offensive side of the ball.
For the last two seasons, most of the questions going into OTAs for Washington came from the defensive side of the ball. After consecutive drafts with a first-round defensive lineman selection, the defense should be much improved.
On offense, however, there are a lot of new parts.
- The headliner - No position in sports is as important as NFL quarterback. This will be Alex Smith's first action in a Redskins uniform with media present. The 34-year-old veteran is coming off the best season of his career, and if he can continue that level of accuracy and play-making, the Redskins could be poised for an explosive year.
- The speedster - Washington's wideouts lacked separation in 2017. It was apparent through much of the year, and likely played a roll in some of Kirk Cousins' reluctance to make tough throws. Free agent addition Paul Richardson is supposed to help, immediately. He has elite deep speed and the 'Skins brass hopes he can bring a similar element to the offense that DeSean Jackson provided a few years back. Time to prove it Paul.
- The injuries - There are big reasons for concern, namely two very large men in Jordan Reed and Trent Williams. Reed will not participate in OTAs, and has been dealing with a foot/toe injury for the better part of a year. Williams, who seems highly unlikely to attend OTAs, underwent knee surgery in January. Beyond Smith, Reed and Williams are probably the two most important offensive players on the Redskins. OTAs aren't important, Reed and Williams participating, or even attending, OTAs is not important. Both men being healthy and ready to go in September is quite important.
- The Rookie - Has Derrius Guice become the most popular player on the Redskins? Maybe. The dynamic rookie running back, with an interesting draft weekend slide, has the charisma and ability to be a star. The "off-field concerns" that hurt his draft status seem like myths at this point, but there was some injury concern his junior season at LSU (see video above). Guice has an opportunity to be a huge part of the Redskins offense, and all eyes will be watching the rookie.
- The leap? - In 2017, Josh Doctson showed flashes of the player that warranted a first-round pick in 2016. Will 2018 be the year he proves it, week after week, game after game? Getting off to a good start with Smith should help, and even more important would be an injury-free offseason.
There are questions for the defense too, particularly at cornerback after Josh Norman, but this year, the offense has more new parts.
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Those who are worried about Derrius Guice's character picked up some added evidence when, on Monday night, the Redskins rookie invited a bunch of fans to watch Avengers with him in Ashburn.
Man, what is this guy's deal?
First of all, not everyone likes superheroes. So how did he know that those who joined him actually wanted to see Avengers? Did he even ask? What if they wanted to see that really successful, really funny, really well-regarded Amy Schumer comedy, instead?
Avengers Infinity war @8:00 Alamo Drafthouse. If you tryna come— 5⃣ (@DhaSickest) May 21, 2018
Then, there's the issue of Guice buying tickets and concessions for those who showed up.
Also I have 50 tickets for the movie!— 5⃣ (@DhaSickest) May 21, 2018
Some people enjoy buying movie tickets — which are absolutely reasonably priced these days — and, as far as the concessions, seriously? Candy? Popcorn? He could've at least offered to buy something healthier, like broccoli. All movie theaters have broccoli.
Thankfully, those who took Guice up on his invitation weren't grateful for the experience at all, which hopefully means this will be the last time he orchestrates a dastardly deed like this one:
@DhaSickest you haven’t played a down of football in a Skins Jersey yet, but you are quickly climbing my list of favorite Redskins. You are already my favorite personality. It’s infectious my man and if your athletic ability is half of your personality, we have a HOFer #HTTR— Mark Harrell (@SkinsfanMH13) May 21, 2018
Yeah! This totally happened ! Great to meet you @DhaSickest ! What a neat thing to do treating fans to a movie with you! Love it! #httr #RedskinsTweetTeam @Redskins #yourock @AlamoDC #gonnabeafanfavorite pic.twitter.com/Kn4B7qHyxE— Suzie (@whosuzieq) May 22, 2018
I don’t know where to begin. Nothing but love and respect for him 🙏🏼 Guice invited fans out to watch the new Avengers movie with him. He paid for all 50 tickets to watch the movie, on top of taking any photos with fans, signing autographs, even made a quick video message for the kids I work with. On top of all that he paid for our food too. I’m a die hard Redskins fan, but I’ve never been this excited for a player since Sean Taylor 🐐 best believe Guice is my favorite Redskin #HTTR thanks for the awesome night man 💯✊🏼 Ay frfr Mike Mayock, what character issues? 😤🐸☕️
At this point, it's a surprise Guice didn't slide even farther down in the draft, like to the 15th round. Unbelievable.
- THAT TIME DERRIUS GUICE SAVED A WOMAN FROM A SMOKING CAR
- EXPLAINING THE REDSKINS' DEAD CAP MONEY SITUATION
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