Griffin wasn’t interested by seeking to 2013, and when the No. 2 decide within the 2012 NFL draft talked to reporters that day, he promised to be a greater quarterback within the second half of the season. The Redskins would win seven straight video games to shut the season and clinch their first division title since 1999.
“It’s not the way you begin, it’s the way you end,” Griffin mentioned on the latest episode of John Keim’s podcast, throughout which the 30-year-old mirrored on his rise and fall in Washington and expressed his perception that he might be a starter within the NFL once more.
“For me and my profession, it form of units the identical precedent,” he mentioned. “We began off quick, and now I’ve had lots of bumps within the highway. Now I’m getting again up the hill and getting to place my finest foot ahead. That 2012 yr was phenomenal.”
The knee harm Griffin suffered in Washington’s playoff loss to the Seattle Seahawks after the 2012 season altered his profession trajectory. Following his unceremonious exit in 2016 from the area he took by storm as a rookie 4 years earlier, Griffin spent a season with the Cleveland Browns. He flirted with making an attempt to qualify for the Olympics as a sprinter whereas out of the league in 2017 earlier than becoming a member of the Baltimore Ravens as a backup in 2018.
Accidents apart, as Griffin has mentioned earlier than, he informed Keim he was set as much as fail with Washington. Griffin mentioned Shanahan didn’t need him “since Day 1” and dismissed the notion that his private ego performed a job in his downfall.
“That was an influence wrestle between the proprietor and the coach, and I acquired caught within the center,” Griffin mentioned. “It’s powerful to be an African American quarterback within the NFL. … It’s beginning to flip the tide, however African American quarterbacks have all the time been scrutinized differently, whether or not individuals wish to admit that or not. That’s a part of this dialog. That’s a part of the systemic racism. That’s a part of prejudice. That’s a part of these stereotypes that we’re attempting to remove. On the finish of the day, I feel that performed a job.”
Griffin didn’t elaborate on how racism affected him throughout his tenure with the Redskins, however he mentioned his expertise with Washington finally made him a greater man and a greater chief. It has knowledgeable the recommendation he gives to Ravens beginning quarterback Lamar Jackson, the reigning NFL MVP.
“I don’t assume anyone desires that have, however on the finish of the day, you need to maximize your experiences on this life,” Griffin mentioned of his time with the Redskins. “I feel I’ve tried to try this to the most effective of my skills.”
Griffin mentioned he’ll sooner or later write a e-book “and inform everyone what they need to learn about what occurred in Washington,” however now is just not the time. He would favor to look ahead, to what’s left of his NFL profession as he enters the ultimate yr of his contract with the Ravens and to doing what he can to have an effect on social change.
Final week, Griffin, who joked as a rookie that he would discuss something besides race, faith and politics, was moved to share a virtually seven-minute video on Twitter voicing assist for the Black Lives Matter motion and speaking concerning the significance of being an anti-racist and an informed voter.
“Black lives matter, however matter is the minimal,” Griffin says within the video. “Black lives are beloved. Black lives are worthy. Black lives are wanted. Black lives matter.”
Griffin informed Keim the video took one take as a result of it “got here from the center.”
“It’s an ungainly time proper now for lots of people who could or will not be African American,” Griffin mentioned. “Some individuals have by no means mentioned something. Some individuals have all the time thought, ‘Man, this doesn’t have an effect on me that a lot, so I’m simply going to remain out of hurt’s approach.’ I would like these individuals — we want these individuals — to step up and say one thing. The individuals who aren’t affected, they need to be simply as outraged because the people who find themselves.”