The Washington Redskins are not going to start rookie QB Robert Griffin III against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. Instead, rookie QB Kirk Cousins will get the starting nod. Griffin suffered what appeared to be a devastating injury last Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens and the mere discussion of him possibly playing this week was remarkable in in itself. Griffin took no practice reps with the first team this week, Cousins did instead.There are no reports whether or not Griffin will even dress for the contest.
The decision was made late Saturday night after it was learned that Griffin might do further harm to his knee by playing on Sunday. The Redskins announced the move via their official Twitter account Saturday night. “Redskins announce that the team is expected to start Kirk Cousins at quarterback on Sunday vs. Cleveland.”
Griffin was obviously disappointed by the team’s decision. He took to Twitter, writing the following, “The decision was not my own….But I will be there for my team!!! In every way I possibly can.”
There will be significant pressure on Cousins. This is not a meaningless late-season contest, the Redskins find themselves in the playoff hunt with a 7-6 overall record. A loss doesn’t eliminate the Redskins, but it will further complicate matters for Washington.
Fantasy Implications– The injury to Griffin couldn’t have come at a worse time for fantasy owners. Most leagues have already started their playoffs or started them this week. If you are competing in the playoffs, it’s likely that you rode the hot hand of Griffin into post-season. Hopefully, you have a suitable backup quarterback to start. I would not suggest picking Cousins off the waiver wire. Yes, he looked solid in his limited action this week, but how is he going to perform while starting a game? This move also affects the value of WR Pierre Garcon in fantasy circles as well. He should be downgraded. Garcon was already going to be matched up against Browns CB Joe Haden, so don’t expect a big day.
Breaking Update– Albert Breer and others are now reporting that Robert Griffin III will not dress for the Redskins game this afternoon in Cleveland. Rex Grossman will back up rookie Kirk Cousins.