During Friday’s broadcast of “First Take” on ESPN2, co-hosts Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were talking about the Washington Redskins quarterback situation. Former first-rounder and Rookie of the Year Robert Griffin III has yet to take a snap in the 2015 season and has not been the same player he once was since suffering multiple knee injuries, while current starter Kirk Cousins has struggled so far this season, throwing eight interceptions in six games.
According to Smith, second-year head coach Jay Gruden, who was not the coach in Washington at the time Griffin was drafted, needs to be looked at for his differing treatment of Griffin, who is black, and Kirk Cousins, who is white. Smith compared the situation to Warren Moon being traded by the Houston Oilers and the backup, Cody Carlson, being his replacement, as well as other black quarterbacks Randall Cunningham and Doug Williams.
“We thought we were beyond the days of thinking about a Warren Moon being pushed out the door for Cody Carlson or Randall Cunningham and what he was going to be able to do or Doug Williams if he could lead a team to a Super Bowl. The list goes on and on. We thought we were beyond this black quarterback issue. Unbeknownst to him, Jay Gruden forced the subject to be revisited. It has absolutely nothing to do with what is going on on the field. It has everything to do with how he is willing to treat one quarterback compared to another. When RG3 made these mistakes you saw how Jay Gruden talked about him. Kirk Cousins makes these mistakes, ‘It is going be all right. It’s the weather, the wind, he is a good guy, he works hard, we believe in him and blah, blah, blah.'”
He later added, “We know [Robert Griffin III] hasn’t been the same since his injury. We know all of this stuff, but the attacks that have come his way seems to be disturbingly excessive.”
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