Kyle Shanahan is the new offensive coordinator of the Browns, which means that he is no longer one of the coaches guiding the development of Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III.
The first year of their partnership was a smashing success as Griffin shone on the field while leading the Redskins to an NFC East title. Then he smashed his knee in a playoff loss to the Seahawks, missed the offseason and never recaptured the heights of his rookie season during a 3-13 2013 season that also featured plenty of reports of animosity between Griffin and former head coach Mike Shanahan.
The younger Shanahan said Thursday that the season was a challenge, but that he and Griffin were able to keep their relationship intact throughout the season. He also believes that both of them will be better for the experience.
“I’m not going to say it was easy. Nothing’s easy when you go through something like that. But I do believe going through it, Robert and I in the long run, it’ll make both of us better,” Shanahan said, via the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “It’s something that is a challenge, and I do believe going through that, as hard as it was, will help me. I think when it’s all said and done and Robert and I look back on it, I’m really appreciative of some of the stuff he did for me, and I really believe he’ll be appreciative of some of the stuff I did for him.”
One way Shanahan believes it will make him a better coach is that he learned how to work with a promising rookie quarterback. Shanahan said you have to “make sure you put them in a situation to be successful” and work on the other parts of the quarterback’s game while focusing on what he does best early in his career. The Browns may be adding such a quarterback to the roster this year, so Shanahan’s feelings could get put to a quick test in Cleveland.