After Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III suffered a torn ACL versus the Seahawks on January 6, the prognosis from team doctors and officials was that RGIII would be able to play in around eight months. Even me, being the ultimate optimist that I am, was skeptical. Eight months sounds too good to be true, even to the die-hard Redskins fans like myself. Adrian Peterson is the only athlete I can remember making that kind of expedient return after facing that kind of injury. And as freaky as specimen as RGIII is, Adrian Peterson's return from his blown out knee was downright miraculous.
When reports surfaced five days ago stating that Redskins officials were so encouraged by quarterback RGIII's progress thus far, that the team believes he has a good shot of starting in week 1, I finally allowed myself to feel a sense of cautious optimism. VERY cautious. If there is one thing I have learned on in my 28 years on this planet is being a blind optimist as a Redskins fan gets your heart broken.
But now, Adidas is taking advantage of Griffin's comeback attempt. The new "Blow Up" --- All In For Week 1 commercial, which premiered on YouTube this morning, features a rehabilitating RGIII.
And although I am pretty uncomfortable with the term 'Blow Up' when referring to my quarterback and his knee, this commercial is rather awesome.
Griffin posted the link to the ad this morning on his Twitter account, followed up by this tweet.
I am sure the marketing gurus over at Adidas salivated at the chance to capitalize on their star sponsored quarterback comeback effort, but ad campaigns be damned. All I know is that I hope is that Griffin sincerely means what he says in that tweet instead of that commercial. Because whether he is return to the field this coming September, the pressure for him to do so is going to be intense. And this commercial only will make things tougher.
DC is a fan based spoiled rotten by past successes. The eighties and early nineties placed the Redskins among the NFL royalty. And despite twenty years of ineptitude, that's a place the team never left in the mind of Redskins Nation. So when the rookie carried the to their first division title in over decade, the taste of success in now back in the mouth of every Redskins fan. Back is the sense of entailment. Back are the Redskins in their rightful place as NFL elite. And the job of keeping it there lands squarely on the surgically-repaired right knee of Robert Griffin III.
RGIII has already shown that he is the type of player that won't people down. He proved that when he limped all over the chewed-up FedEx Field turf almost two months ago. He put his career in peril for a franchise that has been deprived of consistency and prosperity since Joe Gibbs 1.0. Throw in the fact that the head coach Mike Shanahan's has already proven that he is capable of mishandling Griffin, and back comes my sinking feeling of pessimism.
Look, nothing would make me happier than seeing my franchise quarterback taking snaps from center come week 1. And if he is able to pull this comeback off and pick up where he left off before Haloti Ngata's hit, then his already legendary status will grow even more than it already has. But if there is one thing that Griff doesn't need, its added pressure from outside influences. The collective influence from that fateful January afternoon left RGIII with his second torn ACL in less than four years.
No more reports from Redskins brass saying he is ahead of schedule. No more weekly updates. And no more All In For Week 1 . Just time, rehab and hard work.