According to Mike Shanahan, the process of getting a franchise quarterback has been going on ever since he arrived. And it won’t be over when they select Robert Griffin III with the second pick in the draft.
“Just one guy doesn’t do it, you’ve got to have a supporting cast,” Shanahan said at Redskins Park on Wednesday. “I think we made some strides over the years of putting that kind of team together. When you do bring a quarterback in hopefully he was the weapons to make him successful.”
In preparation for the arrival of Griffin, or any potential franchise signal caller, Shanahan has nearly completely turned over the potential offensive weapons on the roster. Of all the running backs and wide receivers who were on the roster when Shanahan took over as head coach in January of 2010, only Santana Moss and Anthony Armstrong (who was on the practice squad and had not yet played an NFL snap) remain.
Whether the new group of receivers and running backs is an improvement over the players who were here before remains to be seen. So does how Griffin will look when he puts on an NFL uniform and takes the field. And that, of course, is the key.
“When you’re talking about a franchise quarterback you’re really talking about a guy that has all of the physical and mental attributes that you’re looking for in a quarterback,” said Shanahan. “And now he has to go do it out on the field.”
Indeed, Roger Goodell calling Griffin’s name on Thursday night is only the beginning for the Heisman winner and for the Redskins. After that, it becomes a matter of what happens between the lines. We won’t get the answer to that for a few years.