NEW YORK--It is safe to say that there has never been a draft night quite like it for the Redskins Or, for that matter, for any other NFL team.
When else has the team’s top draft pick sung the team’s fight song over the telephone to reporters? Or showed up in socks in the team’s colors? Or was able to rattle off nearly every receiver and running back on the roster, not just their names but a quick scouting report on some of them?
But Robert Griffin III did all of that and more in the two hours after this card was turned into Roger Goodell at about 8:13 on Thursday night:
After celebrating with his family, Griffin was in on a conference call with reporters at Redskins Park. When asked how he felt after being drafted, Griffin broke out into “Hail to the Redskins.”
Then it was to the interview room at Radio City Music Hall where he answered some of the same questions he had just taken on the phone again. Yes, he was excited. Yes, he was looking forward to getting to know his teammates, especially the offensive line. Yes, he was looking forward to playing games against Eli Manning, Tony Romo and Michael Vick but he didn’t really play against other quarterbacks, he plays against defenses.
RG3 managed to get in plugs for two of the companies he has signed to endorse, mentioning Subway and adidas, the makers of his distinctive socks.
After showing off those burgundy and gold socks at the front table he went to a back room and answered more questions and more of the same questions. He was interviewed by everyone from the local reporters who were on the scene to fellow Heisman Trophy winner Eddie George, to international reporters from Latin America and Japan.
And Griffin answered every repetitive question like it was the very first time anyone had ever asked him that question. He showed the socks, which have become his signature fashion accessory, several more times with the same enthusiasm he had showed them the first time.
Somewhere in between all of this he took a minute to send out his sentiments via Twitter. HAIL TO THE REDSKINS!!!! It's an honor to be your quarterback #CantWait,” he tweeted via his @RGIII Twitter handle, which he started just a few weeks ago and now has over 166,000 followers.
His introduction as a Redskin is just beginning. On Friday, Griffin will go to Redskins Park and get what he needs to start preparing for next weekend’s rookie camp. Then on Saturday he’ll go to FedEx Field for another press conference and an introduction to the team’s fans gathered at the draft day party.
The party will go on for the fans, who will be counting down the days to RG3’s debut in the regular season opener in New Orleans (which just so happens to be Griffin’s home town). That countdown, by the way, stands at 135 days.
Meanwhile, the hard work of becoming an NFL quarterback starts for Griffin. It’s rookie camp for Griffin next weekend and then OTA’s, minicamp, and then training camp with a lot of time in meeting rooms with Kyle Shanahan and QB coach Matt LaFleur. He said (more than a few times) that he will be the first one in the building and he last one out. We will start seeing the results in September.