Monday, August 17, 2015

RGIII Watch (Redskins @Browns)

(Is RGIII improving and can the fans handle it? Image Via)
So, it's been a few days. People have had a chance to watch the game, panic and settle down and now it's time to look back at The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of the Redskins first preseason game of the 2015 season.

Before we start the GBU (which will be my next post), I need to focus in on RGIII again. There was a TON of sports talk driven commentary on whether RGIII shown any improvement and whether Kirk Cousins (who did look great on Thursday) should be put back into the running as a potential starter in week one after the game last Thursday. So, this article is dedicated only to the breakdown of RGIII's passes and his run for a 1st down.

So Robert was 4/8 for 36 yards. The stats don't look that great, but at this moment that isn't really an issue. So lets look at each pass attempt and see what did (or didn't) happen.

#1) 3-5-WAS 25 (13:48) (Shotgun) 10-R.Griffin pass short right to 14-R.Grant to WAS 34 for 9 yards (21-J.Gilbert).

It was a 3rd down and RGIII completed a short crossing pattern to Ryan Grant. Grant ran a good route to get beyond the five yards needed. Griffin's pass was slightly behind Grant, but on target enough that Grant didn't need to stop or reach back to grab the pass.

#2) 2-5-WAS 39 (12:38) 10-R.Griffin pass incomplete deep left to 88-P.Garcon.

Based  on Garcon's head movement and body position, it looks like the route was meant to go inside on his right shoulder. The pass, while accurate to location, was more towards the sideline on Garcon's left shoulder. Did Robert adjust his throw for the safety in the middle of the field? I don't know because I don't know the original route/play call. Was Robert a bit late on the pass? Yes. Should Pierre have caught the pass anyway?  Yes. What would have been interesting is how the vibe in DC would have been if Garcon had caught the ball. Fair to say Robert's stats would have been more like 5/7, 97 yards and a TD.

#3) 3-5-WAS 39 (12:31) (Shotgun) 10-R.Griffin pass incomplete short left to 85-E.Spencer.

This was the pass I had the biggest issue with during Robert's performance. It was a short timing route that either was some miscommunication with rookie WR Evan Spencer or Griffin was way off on the pass. This type of error could lead to an easy INT and TD return.

#4) 2-7-WAS 23 (6:24) 10-R.Griffin pass short right to 14-R.Grant to WAS 28 for 5 yards (22-T.Williams).

Looks like same route that worked on Robert's 1st pass. Looks like Jay wants Robert to work on certain things......

#5)  2-8-WAS 33 (4:35) 10-R.Griffin pass deep left to 14-R.Grant to CLE 45 for 22 yards (31-D.Whitner) [99-P.Kruger].

This was Robert's best pass of the night but not because of the yardage. Robert ran a bootleg to his left (something he's had problems with in 2013-2014) and despite taking a shot, throws a bullet to Ryan Grant. It's not ideal for Robert to get planted on a throw, but he kept his eyes downfield and was able to hit Grant on the run while running to his left.

#6) 3-1-CLE 36 (2:44) 10-R.Griffin pass short right to 36-D.Young to CLE 36 for no gain (56-K.Dansby).

The old Spider 2 Y Banana  play. Looks like Robert got the ball out pretty quickly but unfortunately Cleveland had good penetration and did a good job in man coverage to hit Young behind the line of scrimmage for no gain.

#7)  2-6-CLE 14 (:42) 10-R.Griffin pass incomplete short left to 88-P.Garcon.

On Robert's final two passes of the night, it looks like Jay Gruden was looking to work on one of the weaker elements of RGIII's game: the fade route. On this play Garcon was able to get separation with the CB but the ball went more to the sideline instead of the corner.

#8)  3-6-CLE 14 (:39) (Shotgun) 10-R.Griffin pass incomplete short left to 88-P.Garcon [36-K.Williams].

2nd fade attempt. This was thrown more to the designed spot but the coverage on Garcon was better and Robert had to basically throw the ball away. While neither pass was that terrific, at least both balls were thrown that only the WR could make the play or no one could.

I also want to talk about the following play:

3-2-WAS 28 (5:50) (Shotgun) 10-R.Griffin scrambles right guard to WAS 31 for 3 yards (56-K.Dansby).

This is a good play to look at with Robert's view of open receivers and his growth. From watching the game live Robert takes the snap looks, sees no one open and runs three yards for a 1st down. He even shifts his body into a position where he doesn't take a major hit as he goes down. Overall good play. However, CSN's Trevor Mattich did notice that had Griffin waited a moment more there were times that Grant and Garcon were open. Ideally, you want the QB to avoid taking a hit and throw, but in this case he got the 1st down. It's hard to argue that he should have not used his legs here.

Final Thoughts

It's the 1st preseason game, so barring something terribly awful, RGIII's job was never up for grabs. The good news is that Robert has shown improvement compared to last year and arguably looked better in this game vs. the Browns than in any game he played in during 2014 (maybe the Jacksonville game being a lone exception). Robert looks more comfortable when he is taking snaps from under center and there is a clear confidence when he is working in the pocket.

Is RGIII there yet? I don't think so. He still needs to improve upon his touch on fades, he needs to develop better timing with his receivers and be ready to read more exotic defenses and know how to counter them. But so far, so good. Hopefully Robert can take advantage of the next few games and continue to improve upon his skills.

Now is not the time to panic, now is the time to see if the Redskins and RGIII can get ready to succeed for the first time since 2012.

1 comment:

TwoFishFive said...

An unbiased assessment. Good work.

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