RG3 on RG3: Post Concussion

There's just no way to pick out one quote from Robert Griffin, III speaking on the his recovery from a concussion he sustained during last week's game against the Atlanta Falcons. So, we decided to give it to you straight, no chaser, in it's entirety as he spoke Wednesday afternoon to the media.

RG3 after the concussion:  "I feel good."
“Practice went good. I felt sharp. I felt good – no symptoms of a concussion or anything like that, no dizziness, or feeling off-balance, or things of that nature. So, I feel good.”

On if he hasn’t experienced any symptoms since leaving the locker room on Sunday:
“Right. I’m not just saying that, because I know it’s a serious issue. I felt fine when I left the locker room. I went home, watched some TV and kind of just relaxed. I haven’t had any bad symptoms or any symptoms at all since I left the locker room.”

On if he had any leftover symptoms after experiencing a concussion in college:
“No, I did not. Kind of the same thing – came back to in the fourth quarter similar to what I did this game. I was fine. I played the next week – played Texas and we won.”

On playing aggressively after this experience:
“It doesn’t make you less aggressive, but it is a learning lesson. The one thing I learned was I can’t do that to my team, to the fans or to my family because life is more important than the game of football. These things that happen to us, getting hurt, getting hit in the head, that affects us down the road and I have to make sure I limit that. At some point, all players and our fans stop becoming players and fans. We start becoming people, and people care. I have to make sure I keep myself safe while still being the same player that I am. Keep myself safe so that my family and the fans and my teammates aren’t let down.”

On if he saw linebacker Sean Weatherspoon coming:
“I did. I tried to get down, but if I had slid a half second earlier I would have been safe. I tried to get down too late and he had already launched. At that point, it was just a matter of absorbing the hit and I absorbed it the wrong way.”

On if he considered going out of bound:
“It was just at the last second. I was running, I made the one guy miss and then I saw Spoon there at the end. I tried to get down. There was no way I could get out of bounds at that point. In the future, looking back on it – hindsight is 20/20 – I would’ve either thrown it away or got out of bounds.”

On other ways to keep himself safe without losing aggression:
“Just being aware of it. I ran out of bounds today at practice and I imitated a slide and got a huge cheer from the team. It’s just something I have to make myself aware of – conscious. It’s not about being soft. I don’t have anything to prove to anybody. The team has let me know that. Everyone has let me know that. Everyone knows I’m a tough guy. I promised I’d get up from hits like that and I did get up. I kept that promise and I don’t have anything to prove, so it’s just about getting the yards and if you have to live to play another down, then you live to play another down.”

On if it is difficult to program himself to slide in the red zone:
“It is. I talked to the coaches and we watched the film and they said I was going to have to really convince them that I could have gotten out of that with four guys right there. The one in college I actually did slide. It was actually just a shoulder to the helmet – how I was sliding. They don’t protect you as much in college as they do in the pros. It’s kind of the same situation but completely different. This one, I should have just got down earlier or thrown the ball away. I learned from it.”

On if there’s any doubt he’ll be ready for Sunday:
“For me, no, there’s never doubt as a player. You always feel like you’re going to be ready to go. [Head Athletic Trainer] Larry [Hess] and the guys are doing their job. They’re taking the proper precautions to make sure that I am ready to go and I don’t have any symptoms. I continue to get evaluated every day. The only symptom I do have is irritability because they keep asking me the same questions. They’re doing their job and I respect them for it. They kept me out of the game even though, as they just told me earlier, I still refuse to say I had a concussion. I had temporary memory loss. It’s their job to make sure I’m safe and I had some temporary memory loss and that’s why they kept me out. It was the same thing that happened in college. I respected my college team and coaches and trainers for that. I respect them for doing that for me as well.”

On telling Mike Shanahan he was ‘fine’:
“That’s the same thing I told Coach [Art] Briles at Baylor. I told him I was fine, put me back in the game. You want to play and your survival instincts take over and it just shows that I care about this team and I didn’t want to leave them hanging. I told him I was fine and he looked at me and told me I wasn’t. What am I supposed to say? I said, ‘Alright, Coach.’ They held me out. That’s what they were supposed to do. I came back to literally 15 minutes later and I started talking to them in the locker room – explaining everything that happened so they knew that I was fine. They told me it was too late and I had to shower up and watch the rest of the game. So, I did just that.”

On his family’s reaction to the hit:
“Not a strong reaction…Moms are moms. She probably had the strongest of them all, but they all came in the locker room. My dad came and found me and they made sure I was OK. I told them I was alright and they stayed a lot of the night with me that night at my house to make sure I was fine. There didn’t seem to be any difference. Woke up in the morning on Monday and my mom called me at 8:00 because I told her I was coming to the facility at 8:00. I was here and picked up and said, “Hi, Mom.’ She said she just wanted to hear my voice. That’s how moms are going to be. They’re going to worry about their children. And like my dad told me, he said he’ll be 100 before I am, so there won’t be a day that he’s not worried about his son. I love my parents for that.”

On medical findings about concussions:
“I’m not scared of it. For me, something similar to this happened in college. The trainers and doctors have obviously talked to me about it – all the symptoms. I knew once I did come back to. I didn’t have any sensitivity to light, dizziness, wasn’t tired, my appetite wasn’t thrown off, I had great balance, I could remember everything. I pretty much put myself through that concussion test and knew that I was OK. Like they told me, things might look right but if you don’t feel right then you shouldn’t play. I feel right today and we’ll see what happens come Sunday.”

On how he cut his chin:
“I think it came from the chinstrap – either that or the guy that I hit, whoever I fell on. I didn’t think
Spoon’s hit caused the stitches. It’s whatever. It doesn’t matter.”

On if he will get cleared to wear a tinted shield:
“I don’t know if they would allow that, but everybody wants to have the cool tinted shield. If that is a way to get one, maybe.”

On when he took his concussion test Wednesday:
“That’s why I went in. I got tested. Doctor came by, wanted to make sure I was fine after practice. I worked out a little yesterday – did some cardio, some drills, some throwing just to make sure my motor skills were still there and that I was fine and that I wasn’t getting dizzy after I was running. To come out of practice, they wanted to do it again so they put me through that. I passed that, but I’m still not cleared by any means for full contact or anything like that. As a quarterback, you don’t get hit in practice so I could still go out and practice a little bit.”

On what kind of test he took:
“It was just balance, remembering numbers backwards, remembering three things that they tell you to remember, those kind of things – being able to walk in straight line and do those things.”

“I’m not sure, preferably before Sunday. That’s my only thing – that I’ll be able to practice and do those things. There is no contact for me, so I can still go out and be with the team and work on the game plan. The biggest thing is just making sure that I’m cleared and ready to play by Sunday.”

On if there was a touchdown available before he got hit:
“It was an exotic look – as we like to call it in football. That’s why I kind of stopped, to try to see if I could go back and try to hit, but I was indecisive. I decided to roll out of the pocket. You don’t want to throw it over the middle late. Hindsight – yeah, I probably would’ve tried to throw that ball. It was definitely a look that we hadn’t seen on film. Stuff like that happens sometimes. You’re going to miss some things.”

On if all the testing affects his preparation for Sunday:
“No, it hasn’t. If anything, it keeps me here longer. I make sure I continue to do the same things I normally do – whether it’s with their scouting report, what they do, talking to different people about the team, watching film. I still stay on top of all those things. They said it was OK for me to watch film since I wasn’t having any sensitivity to anything or just watching guys run around on the screen. I’ve been able to do the same things.”

On his performance in the game prior to the hit:
“As an offense, we moved the ball. It’s just like Coach [Shanahan] said, we have to get better on third downs, whether it’s running the ball or throwing the ball, third-and-short or third-and-long. We’ll get better at that. It’s not something you need to press about. It is something that is a glaring issue for us right now. Teams are going to try to exploit that and say ‘Hey, whatever we run on third down, these guys aren’t being able to move the ball and get first downs.’ We’ll make sure we clean that up and that takes everybody.”

On what the offense must do to get better at converting third downs:
“If it’s third and one, you have to get one yard. If it’s third-and-nine or third-and-12, you have to be able to get the ball to your playmakers and allow them to make plays. Whether that’s throwing the right ball, catching the passes that are thrown or it’s getting the calls out there, it’s not one issue. In the past game, we had a couple drops and then there’s plays out there that I could’ve thrown a better ball. I look at the receiver and they look at me. We all know who has to come up and make big plays for us. We’ll make them.”

On balancing protecting himself and making plays on third down:
“It’s kind of like the same view you have to have if you’re hot. Like they say, if they’re blitzing and bringing pressure and you’re hot, you have to trust that you’re hot and they’re going to get you the first down. When teams, on third-and-seven, they drop guys in deep coverage, we have to trust each other that if I throw the checkdown, you’re going to get the first down or extremely close to it. There are times to break the pocket and make plays and then there are times you just have to take the checkdown, take what they’re giving you and just know that the guy you’re throwing to is going to try as hard as he can to get the first.”

On if Mike Shanahan and Kyle Shanahan are trying to protect him by not giving him as many designed runs:
“I don’t think so. It’s whatever the game presents and what we’re doing at that time. Our game plan and the call sheet we’ve had has been different for every game. Whether they dial up QB runs or not, it doesn’t matter to me. It’s just a matter of winning.”

On if he’s leery of taking the next hit:
“No. For me, it is about being smart. Like Coach said, it is a learning experience for me. It’s something that you appreciate things a lot more after something happens that can, not scare you, but definitely make you aware of things. My brain, my head, my future outside of football, my life is more important than trying to get that touchdown on third-and-four on the goal line. I just have to know when to run out of bounds and just know that what happens to me affects a lot of people. You just have to take that approach to it and know if I can run out of bounds, run out of bounds. If I can slide, just slide. But if feel like you can make play, go make that play. Things like that hit don’t happen all the time and they haven’t happened all the time for me. I'll be smart."

The Redskins face Minnesota this Sunday. 

Slide if you need to, Robert.  Slide.  (Running out of bounds is a good option, too).