By Jennifer X Williams
When the Redskins hosted the Bengals in week 3, it was Robert Griffin III's toughness that left a lasting impression, not Griffin's ability not to run or throw the ball, or lead his team but his gritty play. The young quarterbacks ability to get back up after being hit…
It left many to wonder about the rookie's durability over the course of a entire NFL season.
That question was answered just seven quarters later.
Sunday, as the Redskins hosted the 4-0, Atlanta Falcons, RG3 was taken out of the game by a shoulder-to-helmet blow delivered by Falcons linebacker, Sean Weatherspoon.
"It's just a bang-bang tough play. He got outside of our end, I was in pursuit and he didn't go out of bounds, so I just tried to get a good hit on him. Unfortunately he left the game, I wish the best for him, hope everything's going alright," said Weatherspoon.
"Most quarterbacks either slide or run out of bounds, but he's a tough guy, a tough guy, but I think he'll learn a little bit. He's tough, he's fighting, I commend him for that."
Weatherspoon also added that the hit was clean, saying it was, 'a good hit, a good play and it gave us a little bit of energy,' while reiterating his concern for RG3's health while clarifying that it wasn't a helmet to helmet hit, "I'm not that kind of guy to go up top like that…I'm just trying to get a good hit."
Weatherspoon said he gave RG3 a tap on the head as Griffin was walking away, and Griffin told him he had done a 'good job.'
"He definitely made us prepare" Weatherspoon said with a laugh, "all week man, that's all we talked about…trying to find a way to stop the run game, even the quarterback running. He's been doing some great things, play action pass, stick it in there and pass it right over your linebacker, so you know, he's a tough guy to go against."
Weatherspoon who plays with arguably the hottest QB in the league right now, Matt Ryan, said when comparing RG3 to the veteran signal caller, 'He's an electric player, I know that he's going to do some great things for the Redskins and they'll win a lot of football games with him. I played against him in college so I've seen him for awhile so I know what type of athlete he is, what type of quarterback he is, you know people just think about him being a an athlete but he's a really good quarterback."
Cornerback, Dunta Robinson who registered half of a sack versus Griffin said, '[he] almost led his team to a victory' and noted that Griffin will have a long and successful season in the NFL.
Defensive tackle, Jonathan Babineaux, didn't think the victory was pretty, but would take it to extend the Falcons streak to a 5-0 start to the season. Babineaux also had a tough critique of RG3's performance,
"He's still a rookie quarterback, he won the Heisman last year, but he's a professional now. I think for a rookie he played well. He led his team well, he seemed like he was the leader out there, the older guys really seemed to listen to him, so personally I felt like he did a good job. You know he still is a rookie, so we didn't expect much from him, but he did will."
It is yet to be determined what Griffin will take away from this game and whether he will continue or curb his tough play. Coach Mike Shanahan said the quarterback did indeed suffer a mild concussion (link to either Tarik or Rich's story) and that he would need to pass an NFL mandated concussion test this week, so while Griffin's future availability may be up in the air, one thing that isn't, is the rookie's grit. He tweeted just after the game that he would be ready to play Sunday as the Vikings take on the Redskins at FedEx Field at 4:25PM.