The NFL has handed down a “hefty” $20,000 fine to the Washington Redskins for the way they handled rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III’s concussion two weeks ago against the Atlanta Falcons. RGIII left the game and did not return when he was blasted by the Falcons defense on a quarterback sneak he neglected to slide on.
The Redskins in turn neglected to reveal the severity of RGIII’s injury to the media, simply saying that the former Heisman winner and new NFL superstar was merely “shaken up” after the game. Washington later said that RGIII had a “mild concussion” and the NFL apparently didn’t like the choice of words initially used to describe the injury.
This is likely going to stir fans up, especially fans in Washington and Buffalo as the Bills were fined a “hefty” $20,000 for misreporting Mario Williams injury as well.
It’s one thing to leave players off injury reports, which the Baltimore Ravens and Buffalo Bills have allegedly done with Ed Reed and Mario Williams, but it’s a far less aggressive middle finger to use a poor choice of words to describe the injury immediately after it happens. I naturally hate Mike Shanahan and loathe the ground he arrogantly walks on, but all he said was RGIII was “shaken up” which in a certain context is not untrue. RGIII was indeed shaken up — he had a concussion I wouldn’t call that being fine and dandy.
But if you work in an office and they have strict rules on how they want their TPS reports filed, you don’t flirt on a razor thin edge and then play high schoo student in the principal’s office when you get called out on it. No, Mike Shanahan didn’t murder Roger Goodell’s family wearing a Bugs bunny suit whilst riding a unicycle. But he also knows the rules and how strict the NFL is when it comes to head injuries.
The bigger part of this story should be how venomous the media was for apparently not being told the whole truth. Before Sunday’s games, numerous credible outlets reported that a “hefty” fine was on it’s way to Washington as punishment. They all stopped short of gleefully decrying off with their heads for thinking they can lie to us! But the “hefty” fine was less than most defensive players have been fined for doling out hits that cause the injuries like the one suffered by RGIII.
However the aspect of the story we should be glued to is the fact that RGIII is perhaps the next generation’s most flashy and watchable player and if he continues to play the way he does, we might get another case of a talented young quarterback’s career derailed by a wild style of play.