Leading up to the draft there was some speculation that Robert Griffin III could be lost on the N.F.L. level because the coaches made a lot of the decisions for him at the sideline. Today that issue was settled by his former teammate WR Kendall Wright.
“At Baylor we didn’t huddle. Everything we did was coming off of signals and off the sideline,” Wright said. “We didn’t huddle at Baylor and we didn’t have a playbook. If we had a new play or something, we’d just draw it and go out there and run it.”
Plays had names, but the signals from the sideline were the cue, not the code word name of the play. Overall, Wright estimates that he memorized about 300 plays by the time the variations to the plays were counted in.
Adapting to a playbook will be a different expeirnece for both Wright and RGIII, but it should not be a big deal. Wright also said that although the team did not have a playbook they had a lot of plays they had to know.
We had a lot of plays. We just didn’t have a playbook. Coach Briles is a very smart man,” Wright said. “It was the same system. We were in that system for four years. It’s kind of a different kind of learning deal. We’d see it visually and we’d just go run it. It just sticks with us when we keep running it a lot.
Whether or not this will be an issue for Wright and Griffin III moving forward will be interesting. Learning a new team playbook is a daunting task for any rookie–and I personally don’t think it will be a major hindrance for either player. The rookies will have different difficulties. Wright will have to develop chemistry with two different quarterbacks trying to win the starting job in Jake Locker and Matt Hasselbeck–and these are players that have very different strengths and weaknesses. Griffin III on the other hand will be going to perhaps the best division in the league in terms of pass rush–the Giants and Eagles routinely finish in the top 10 in sacks and the Cowboys have the menacing DeMarcus Ware.
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