I’m not sure if anyone is surprised by this announcement but Hue Jackson has called Robert Griffin III his starting quarterback for Week One of the regular season.
“Throughout this process he has gained the respect from his teammates, the coaching staff and the entire organization that is necessary for him to lead our offense and really the entire team,” Jackson said as part of his statement, announcing the decision, per the team website.
Griffin has been viewed as the starter since being signed with his only competition coming from Josh McCown. But with McCown trade rumors swirling last week, it cemented the idea that Griffin would start. If McCown is dealt, Austin Davis and Cody Kessler will compete for the backup role.
Sporting a career record of 14-21, including 5-15 over his past two active seasons, Griffin spent 2015 as the third string quarterback in Washington. He was finally dumped in the offseason, a trade-the-farm draft pick who was highly successful his rookie season but never the same after injuring his knee in the playoffs versus the Seattle Seahawks.
But Griffin still has a big arm with vertical threats, Corey Coleman, Josh Gordon, and Terrelle Pryor, and a more cohesive coaching staff. The latter is led by Jackson, one of the best playcallers in the league, with Pep Hamilton and Al Saunders as assistants.
RG3 will have to make it to Week 11 to see Pittsburgh. That will be a Sunday afternoon game at Cleveland. The Browns come to town in the final week of the season.
In his one game against Pittsburgh, Griffin went 16/34 for 177 yards and a touchdown in a 27-12 loss. That came in 2012, his rookie season.
Cleveland will open the season against the Philadelphia Eagles followed by hosting the Baltimore Ravens the following week. RG3 will face his old team in Week Four.