Shanahan says he didn’t talk to Elway about Griffin

AP

Earlier this week, former Washington coach Mike Shanahan said he talked to Rams coach Jeff Fisher about quarterback Robert Griffin III, and that Shanahan encouraged Fisher to pursue Griffin. Omitted from that specific conversation was the question of whether Shanahan said anything to his former quarterback, John Elway, about Griffin.

Shanahan has now gone on the record again. Among other things, he tells Jenny Vrentas of TheMMQB.com that the former Broncos coach did not speak to the current Broncos G.M. during the current offseason about Griffin.

“I talked to John one time last summer over at the house, but that was not just about Robert, it was about football in general,” Shanahan said. “I don’t really remember our conversation, except that I said I think Robert will go back to running the offense we ran in 2012, which is not the offense we ran in Denver. I told John that we ran strictly an offense that Robert was used to, or that he had run when he was at Baylor, and we didn’t do a lot of the principles that we did with Denver except for the zone running scheme. That was about the only thing that we had in common, so it was hard to say how Robert would do in the Broncos system when it was so different than the system we ran with John. And that was the length of our conversation. But I didn’t talk to John [about Griffin] this offseason. I had not one phone call by anybody this year, didn’t speak to anyone about Robert, except when I called Jeff.”

It’s understandable that Shanahan wouldn’t admit publicly to sharing specific concerns with Elway about Griffin’s non-football characteristics. Still, Elway reportedly got a bad report about Griffin from someone. If it came from someone other than Shanahan, it’s hard not to imagine Elway calling Shanahan to either confirm or debunk it.

Regardless of whether Shanahan was privately candid with Elway, Shanahan was publicly candid about the style of play that is suited to Griffin. Shanahan thinks that Griffin needs to run the kind of offense with which he had success in 2012, with heavy doses of a read-option attack that Griffin specifically wanted to transition away from in 2013 and beyond. Shanahan believes Griffin won’t be able to become a drop-back quarterback, but that he could be successful in an attack that allows him to run.

The challenge becomes running in a way that keeps the quarterback healthy. And that’s a matter of instinct, especially for a guy who has been playing a certain way for years. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson knows how and when to slide, when and how to get out of bounds, and hoe to position himself in a way so that any hit he absorbs isn’t a devastating, injury-causing blow. In 2012, Griffin showed that he’s unable to do that.

“Robert did take too many hits,” Shanahan said of Griffin’s rookie year. “One thing I didn’t do a very good job of is trying to emphasize to him that you can’t take a hit; you’ve gotta slide, you are too valuable. But was hard for him, because that’s not what he did in college. He was such a good athlete, and he was used to being faster and quicker and sometimes bigger. But in the NFL, these guys all can run and they all can hit, so you have to give yourself up. He was very competitive, and he didn’t want to do that.”

It remains to be seen whether Browns coach Hue Jackson uses the read-option or whether Jackson tries to make Griffin into a pocket passer. If it’s the former, Griffin may burn bright once again, until he gets injured. If it’s the latter, Griffin may end up losing the competition to become the team’s starter — or if he wins it he may end up getting benched.

68 responses to “Shanahan says he didn’t talk to Elway about Griffin

  1. First, Shanahan may or may not have talked to Elway about Griffin before Denver decided not to sign him, but I’m not buying that he didn’t talk to ANYBODY from the Mile High city about RGIII(Kubiak maybe?).

    Second, was anybody else creeped out by that picture of Weatherspoon and his tongue?

  2. I’m tired of hearing you HAVE to be a pocket passer to be a successful QB. Yes, most Hall-of-Fame QBs and Super Bowl winning QBs are pocket passers. But look at what happened when the Redskins tried to turn RG3 into a pocket passer. He was bad. Same with Kaepernick in San Fran. When you’ve been playing QB one way your whole life, you can’t train your mind to just change when you get to the NFL. It’s not second nature to them.

    Let them play QB however they’re most comfortable playing.

  3. John Elway was caught taking money under the table as a player (along with two others). Von Miller was caught bribing the NFL’s PED urine tester. Peyton Manning was caught having HGH shipped to his house. And now the Broncos are suddenly worried about “character”? Haha…that’s rich.

  4. No, but he let everyone else in the world know how he felt. Does he think that his comments did nothing to affect Elway’s decision. I hate a man who isnt man enough to stand behind what he says. Thats what little girls do and Shanahan is close to reverting to being a little gossip queen.

  5. ahhh Mike….
    always the eternal optimist…. love how you always look at the bright side…
    however, you also could have said….
    or…. RG3 may surprise the hell out of everyone and learn the concepts of a combination of pocket passing and scrambling smartly…
    ala Alex Smith of the Chiefs….

  6. Why do you keep insisting that Shanahan talked to Elway? Why do you keep implying Elway contacted Shanahan? Because he coached RG3 5 or so years ago? Do you think he called Art Briles? Do you think he called Jay Gruden who until this very year coached him for a couple years? Of course not. Why do you keep portraying this picture that Shanahan told him not to sign RG3? It’s based on absolutely nothing, pure speculation with a hidden agenda. If Elway really wanted to know anything about RG3 he would have called Jay Gruden. Not a guy who coached him 5 years ago before he got hurt and before he went through all the stuff that got him in this position (benched, released) in the first place.

  7. @brenenostler

    The redskins didnt try to turn RG3 into a pocket passer. RG3 believed he was as good in the pocket as Aaron Rodgers (his words) and demanded that Shanahan pull read option plays out of the playbook. Robert demanded that he run plays under center. No one wanted that but Robert and RG2. Go back and do the research if you don’t believe me. I’ve watched Robert since the day my Skins traded up for the 2nd overall pick, a month before the draft. He is the one who demanded that the team turn him into a pocket passer.

  8. It’s Shanahan fault RG3 didn’t know the offense. He didn’t try to teach him. He decided RG3 couldn’t learn an NFL and just went with the Baylor offense but taught Cousin a real NFL offense. Then RG3 realized what was going on and demanded to be given the NFL offense because he correctly realized you can’t just run the gimmick offense forever. But Big Shock Cousins with 2 years to prepare and no injuries was better than he was at it.

    I just hope RG3 succeeds to finally cook the lobster.

  9. A couple of years ago those of us who live in the DC area got tired of the constant drama between RG3 and Mike Shanahan. One thing that did become apparent, though, was that there were constant leaks from within the Redskins that seemed to come from Shanahan’s office that he denied being the source of.

    At the risk of borrowing a Goodellism, let’s just say many of us didn’t find those denials credible.

    It’s also worth noting that after the Shanahans left, the number of leaks from within the Redskins’ camp dropped dramatically.

  10. I’m offended (I mean I love) that Florio posted a picture with REDSKIN right across the front of Shanny’s shirt. Nice choice Mike!

  11. You’re acting like that kid in grade school trying to start a fight between two people who don’t wanna fight. Shanny is done coaching, nobody wants him. RG3 is a Brown, wish him luck.

    Gruden is the coach, McCloughan the GM and Cousins the QB. The Skins will rise again and show the world what a true champion is.

    Hail

  12. RG3 is headed to Cleveland and Elway preferred to sign Mark Sanchez to lead the Denver Broncos. It doesn’t matter what Mike Shanahan could have said. Besides, Elways listening skills are about as good as RG3’s modesty.

  13. “If it’s the latter, Griffin may end up losing the competition to become the team’s starter — or if he wins it he may end up getting benched.”

    Or he may end up learning how to be a drop back QB and do pretty well.

  14. Plenty of Elway hate on here.

    I guess that’s what you get when one is being fitted for a Super Bowl ring.

  15. @brenostler – I think you miss a big component here. NFL defenses adjusted to the fad of the run option that Kap and RG3 exploited in their first years. Then when they were FORCED to throw from the pocket, their inexperience showed.

  16. crazyallives says:
    Apr 1, 2016 4:03 PM

    I’m offended (I mean I love) that Florio posted a picture with REDSKIN right across the front of Shanny’s shirt. Nice choice Mike!
    ————–

    I thought it was just a caption for Shanahan’s picture.

  17. I think John Elway knows enough about being a GM of a World Champion franchise that it doesn’t matter. It’s also 100% legal for Mike to give his thoughts to his former World Champion Denver Broncos QB so big deal. SBs 32, 33, and 50 boys, Mr John Elway was there. Deal with it.


  18. boosanders says:
    Apr 1, 2016 3:45 PM
    Why do you keep insisting that Shanahan talked to Elway? Why do you keep implying Elway contacted Shanahan?

    Why wouldn’t Elway call Shanny? It’s called a reference. Elway would be malfeasant for NOT calling Shanahan. Get a clue, boosanders.

  19. Shanahan trying to say he didnt through his former player under the bus is pointless, he did it when they were together. This rat will never coach again.

  20. BroncosCheatedTheSalaryCap says:
    Apr 1, 2016 3:32 PM

    John Elway was caught taking money under the table as a player (along with two others). Von Miller was caught bribing the NFL’s PED urine tester. Peyton Manning was caught having HGH shipped to his house. And now the Broncos are suddenly worried about “character”? Haha…that’s rich.
    ____________________________________

    You must have gotten screwed by the Broncos at some point in your life. Lose a bet? Date a Bronco cheerleader–broke your heart? Date a Bronco player–same same?

    The Broncos admitted to deferring money in the early days of free agency and salary caps. They were punished by the league. It was out in the open. Not underhanded–or cheating/sneaky–as you imply.

    Von Miller was not involved with PED testing which implies he was looking for an advantage. He smokes pot. He was/is in drug program. Not a PED user. Again you provide false info.

    Peyton Mannings wife is being investigated for having allegedly received HGH shipments. It’s being investigated along with other athletes reportedly also received by Al Jazeera.

    Please–crawl back in your hole. Your panties crumpling up at every mention of the Broncos has become disturbing.

  21. It would have been the greatest April fools joke if this website went 1 day without an rgarbage3 article.

  22. rainsarge says:

    It’s Shanahan fault RG3 didn’t know the offense. He didn’t try to teach him.
    ===================================

    He didn’t? What’s your source?

  23. What is it with the Washington D.C. teams and their names with offensive racial connotations?
    I mean not only the Redskins but how has it escaped everyone that the basketball team name, the Wizards, is only short for Grand Wizard which is a rank in the KKK.

  24. What does it matter? All Elway had to do was read some of the things Shanny said to the media about RG3 and there you go. Give Elway some credit. He’s built a formidable team in Denver and I think he can assess whether or not a QB fits in his offense without consulting anyone.

  25. the rat got beat out by chip for the dumpster fire 49ers job and he is still trying to find a way to be in the headlines…..

    go make a talk show with Mcnabb so you guys can discuss how crappy you both are.

  26. The agenda is to help the Broncos save face for losing this guy to the Browns. When he falls flat for the Browns it will be “oh Elway made such a great move!” Just like when Osweiler left all of a sudden Elway had a trade for Kapernick up his sleeve which literally came out of nowhere. The Broncos are darn good but they bungled the QB position with no plan for post Manning, regardless of the excuses made for king Elway.

  27. In the past decade, the Denver Broncos have had — by far — the most players suspended for PED usage. Each player (except Gardener, who was listed in a BALCO document) was suspended for between four and six games for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy. Welker’s suspension was later reduced.

    League sources said that linebacker Von Miller unsuccessfully attempted to corrupt the NFL’s drug-testing program with the help of a urine collector before each was caught. Miller originally received a four game suspension, but when he appealed, this information was discovered and it was increased to six games.
    Hey Milehirow39-this is for you!!

  28. Since Shanahan suddenly can;t shut up about Griffin, how about he explain why he treated Griffin’s health and safety with so little regard? He practically got him killed on a regular basis.

  29. Shanahan didn’t talk to Elway about Griffin but, RGIII passed a note to Von Miller and he slipped it to Elway during homeroom.

  30. How can you tell if Mike Shanahan is being less than truthful/re-writing history or trying to protect his legacy? His lips are moving. Finished in 4th place 3 times in his last 4 years.

  31. why is this mickey mouse crap even a discussion?

    Yet another division title and super bowl run next season, so many jealous haters.

  32. elrock7:No, I don’t think ANYONE who roots for any team is jealous that Denver has Butt Fumble. Or was that an April food joke!!!

  33. “I only greased up all the linebackers because they kept getting cold.” — Mike Shanahan

  34. mackcarrington says:
    Apr 1, 2016 6:03 PM
    What is it with the Washington D.C. teams and their names with offensive racial connotations?
    I mean not only the Redskins but how has it escaped everyone that the basketball team name, the Wizards, is only short for Grand Wizard which is a rank in the KKK.

    Har har har! You forgot about the braves. You know, the ones that used to scalp women and children. PC police in hot pursuit coo coo.

  35. Seems pretty clear that Shanahan doesn’t know how to use players that he has at is disposal. That’s fundamental coaching issue (coaching 101), and NOT a player problem.

  36. Elway and shanahan had a falling out. That’s why elway wasn’t around when shanny was coaching and shanny isnt around now. Find another story and quit trying to make one here

  37. The Third is more about noise than football. If he was Bobby he would be a teammate. Good luck, Cleveland. Is Hoyer available?

  38. So it has come down to this: are we dealing with a mountain, a molehill or a simple question of veracity that is otherwise pointless?

    The “F” student has failed test after test in grad school but aced every test as an undergrad and Florio debates whether his former teacher in grad school did or did not say anything to the director of admissions at Bronco University that affected the student’s opportunity to matriculate there. And the point about this debate? Is it “Liar Liar Pants On Fire” or is it something more meaningful, as in Shanahan’s opinion does really matter even if he is a liar. Please tell me!

  39. Didn’t have to Elway doesn’t talk to subordinates now. He also knew Bob would be injured by week 3 of the preseason and then he would be scrambling more then he is now to fill the QB spot.

  40. Anyone else noticing that all of the slicksters like Shanahan and Gruden can’t stop talking about RG3? While sliming him with weak, faint praise? Yet RG3 himself hasn’t uttered a single word about any of them? Or Anything else?

    Here is what I think. I think they are scared! They think he is going to come back with a vengeance in Cleveland. And prove Dan Snyder right all along. And that will not bode well for them. I like Rg3’s discipline now. Meaning not taking their bait. And listening to his new coach. ANd focusing on his challenges in Cleveland. His silence is Golden for all of Cleveland. Because he has decided to let his play on the field do his talking. Instead of reacting immaturely to troll bait in social media and the crony press. I rather like this quiet version of RG3. And now we can see who the real noise makers were all along. Because they just can’t stop talking about him. Even though he is totally ignoring them! The Brownies just may have something good cooking on Lake Erie. FINALLY!

  41. Again…….Von Miller was caught, during the draft process and put into the drug program for marijuana. Marijuana never has, and never will, be considered a PED. He then tested positive, again, for marijuana. Suspension was put at 4 games. During testing, because those in drug program are tested weekly, he tried to cheat the system because he continued to use MARIJUANA. He was caught and the suspension was increased to 6 games.

    The drug of choice is legal in Colorado. Illegal in the USA and not allowed, except now those not in drug program can have small traces of THC in their system during testing.

    Since 2003 the Broncos have had a total of 11 players suspended for PED use. Your information, jmdanieli, is incorrect.

  42. Shanahan was the one throwing RGIII under the bus to cover for his son. Cracks me up when people blame Griffin for leaking things to the press, things that made Griffin sound like he was un-coachable.
    Look what the players in Atlanta are saying about Shanny JR.
    Redskins are on the way back, still not sold on Gruden, but it is getting better.
    Hail Redskins!

  43. “…I had not one phone call by anybody this year….”

    Edited: ” I didn’t have ONE call – it was TWO calls.

    Or maybe he “didn’t SPEAK to anybody because he used email and phone texts.

    So you see, he’s not lying at all !

    Methinks he doth protest too much. That was a very long and twisted denial statement when silence or a very direct “I never would have said that about Robert” would have been more appropriate.

  44. Funny how everyone thinks Shanahan said something. What about Jay Grudeb? Kyle Shanahan? The current Washington OC? Teammates? Former teammates?

    If he didn’t get along with people in Washington as is claimed, it could’ve been anyone.

  45. @bigbamboom1 I love it too. Robert is seeing the real now. And, Hue is the man! I think it’s very telling that he didn’t talk with Gruden about Robert. Remember he worked under Gruden in Cincy. Hue based Roberts signing on tape, the interview and the workout. That’s what’s up. Gruden and Shanahan keep on talking. Robert, Hue and the Brown’s are not listening.

  46. Two takeaways from this:
    1. Shanahan is still determined to destroy Griffin’s career. As if coaching him and sticking him with Kyle as DC wasn’t enough.
    2. Shanahan apparently does not like Jeff Fisher.

    I have no love for Griffin or the Shanahans, but seriously, Mike- this guy did not ruin your coaching career. You were overrated to begin with and you were exposed as a fraud for the last time in DC. Let it go and fade off into retirement.

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