Steelers safety Ryan Clark, a still-active player who is spending the week at ESPN, continues to share trade secrets and opinions about players he may be facing again at some point in his career, either in 2013 or beyond.
On Thursday, Clark talked about how to handle Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, based on the manner in which the Steelers handled Griffin during a 27-12 win over Griffin’s team.
“Our goal was to be physical with him at any opportunity we had, and I think it affected his play,” Clark said.
It surely did. Griffin had only 177 yards passing, and he gained only eight yards on six carries.
The Steelers’ approach included Clark applying a big, high hit to Griffin as he ran a pass route on a gadget play. “We were focused on being physical with him,” Clark said. “When they ran the read-option, he was the guy we were focused on. [We] had James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley on him at every chance and every opportunity that we got, just so he knew every play, he was gonna be hit.”
It’s rare and intriguing candor from a player who is still playing, but it makes us wonder how the Steelers really feel about one of their guys talking about how they approach certain situations. While it makes sense for Clark to lay the foundation for a post-football career in the media (especially since he won’t have the star power that will instantly get him hired), Clark’s nonchalance when it comes to talking about how to stop Griffin or his perception that Tom Brady sees “ghosts” and Danny Amendola is “fragile” could be unnecessarily providing ammunition for motivation.
And while we realize the Steelers won’t face the Redskins again in the regular season until 2016, the two teams in theory could cross paths in February of any given year.