Out of context, this is probably the right move.
Out of context, it’s sensible for the Washington Redskins to bench Robert Griffin III for the remainder of their pointless schedule, thus eliminating any injury risk to him and his knee.
Out of context, it also allows the team to showcase Kirk Cousins, the young backup QB who is rumored to be valued highly by other GMs around the league. As Washington does not have a first-round pick in the upcoming Draft due to the RGIII deal, it would be wise to flip Cousins to the highest bidder and gain an extra selection or two.
But, of course, you can’t ignore context.
Context which, in this case, sees Head Coach Mike Shanahan in a staring contest with Owner Dan Snyder, waiting to see who will blink first and force the coach out in Washington. Shanny doesn’t want to be there. Snyder doesn’t want him there. And Shanny is willing to use Washington’s franchise quarterback as a pawn in order to save face.
Reports came out over the weekend that Shanahan was on the verge of quitting after last season, due to the relationship between Snyder and Griffin, which he apparently feels is too close. However, contradicting reports surfaced early this week, which suggested the owner and QB have not done anything social together since last Thanksgiving.
And then Sunday happened. A complete dismantling of the Redskins at the hands of the Kansas City Chiefs at snowy FedEx Field (As an aside: If Shanahan was really worried about Griffin’s health, he would have started his “benching” last week outside in the snow, and not this week in a dome). I thought that was it; Mike Shanahan’s last day as coach. But it wasn’t, most likely for monetary reasons. If Snyder fires Shanahan, it could mean he has to pay him the rest of his contract. He’s banking on Shanahan resigning at the end of the season, in which case he would be owed zero dollars.
Both of these men disgust me, but only one can ever be forced to leave the organization. And if Snyder was really looking out for the best interest of the franchise he owns, he’d fire Shanahan today. But he won’t.
And this saga will rage on for another two and a half weeks or so.
Pointlessly. All because of two humongous egos.