By Barbara Harrison
Robert Griffin III, the Washington Redskins quarterback who suffered a concussion in last week’s preseason game against the Lions, has been ruled out of tonight’s game in Baltimore.
That disquieting news for RG3 and Redskins fans throws into question his fitness and readiness to defend his starting job in his fourth season with the team.
And, more ominously, it begs the question of whether or not Griffin is physically capable of playing again in the NFL.
The reversal raises questions about Griffin’s health going forward after he suffered at least the third concussion of his career in the Aug. 20 game against Detroit. Griffin, 25, also had one at Baylor and another his rookie year with the Redskins.
In the statement, NFL independent neurologist Robert N. Kurtzke recommended that Griffin be retested in “one-two weeks” before a decision about his readiness to compete is made. The Redskins open their regular season Sept. 13 against the Miami Dolphins at FedEx Field.
The team released the statement reversing course on Griffin at 7:18 p.m. on Friday, 24 hours before Saturday’s kickoff. Kurtzke explained that he had reached his conclusion that Griffin should be withheld from competition after reviewing previously studied “neuropsychology data.”
Neither Coach Jay Gruden nor Griffin was available for comment.
At 7:53 p.m., Griffin tweeted: “Trusting in God even when I don’t understand why certain things happen. James 1:2-3 (NLT).”
On Thursday night, the Redskins announced that an independent neurologist had cleared Griffin to resume competition.
That came one week after Griffin suffered a battering that was difficult to watch, hit six times on eight dropbacks in less than eight minutes of action against the Lions. The final hit, which came as Griffin stooped to recover his own fumble, resulted in his third sack of the night. The boos subsided once it became clear Griffin was laying on the field, unable to get up, as team officials examined him.
It’s unclear what prompted Friday’s review of previously analyzed neuropsychological data (or, for that matter, what the neuropsychological data entailed) — whether it was Griffin, his family, the team or someone else who requested it.