Washington doesn’t have a quarterback controversy.
But if you listen to Joe Theismann, maybe it should.
Theismann used his platform on the team’s own preseason broadcast to question Robert Griffin III’s grasp on things, and to praise the work done by backup Kirk Cousins.
“Let’s stop beating around the bush,” Theismann said in the fourth quarter, via the Washington Post. “Kirk Cousins has played much better at the quarterback position than Robert Griffin III has. Now, Robert is learning to work out of a pocket. He doesn’t look as smooth or as comfortable throwing the football. I mean, your eyes will tell you everything you need to know.
“It’s going to be a decision that Jay Gruden is going to have to make. Right now, Robert Griffin III is his quarterback. Now, if there was a quarterback competition, it wouldn’t be a competition. Kirk Cousins would be the man I believe he would have to go to, because of the efficiency with which he has run [the offense]. Now Kirk, like I said, is basically a drop-back quarterback. I see Andy Dalton in Cincinnati, I see Kirk Cousins that way. …”
Theismann even circled back at the end of the game, saying: “I think there’s going to be a lot of conversation after this football game regarding the quarterback position,”
“You can’t avoid it,” he said. “Your eyes don’t lie to you. Robert has struggled in the limited opportunities that he has had. And Kirk Cousins has seized the opportunities that he has had when it comes to playing the position and understanding the offense.”
Cousins did have better numbers, but they all came against reserves. And as much as Theismann might appreciate a traditional drop-back passer, the reality is Cousins has looked average or worse when he’s had a chance to play.
There’s no indication Jay Gruden shares Theismann’s thoughts, but if he did, it would create a controversy in D.C. that pales only to the nickname.