Yes, the draft has come and gone; new names have risen to the top of the heap and all eyes are now settled on what the sports world is calling the ‘cream of the crop.’ Funny thing is, draft picks number’s one and two have come straight out of the gate as slight phenomenons. No, not because of the media hype, but because they are already showing to the world that they are not all about ‘celebrity,’ and what advertisements they may win if they throw the right amount of touchdowns. Both Andrew Luck (Number One Pick for Indianapolis) and the mighty RGIII (Number Two for Washington) are both young men who are a bit off the beaten path when it comes to the sports world. They are bathed in humility.
Luck was the first man picked and is a self-proclaimed nerd…which we will get to later. The second? Robert Griffin III, who also seems to be extremely calm when standing in any type of spotlight whatsoever. He even takes the time to acknowledge his fans and his other teammates, showing his philosophy that there is no “I” in team. The funniest comment to appear in the headlines is the fact that RGIII has just signed up for a Twitter account. Frankly, for someone like myself, it is a real joy to see the entrance of some new, fresh mentalities to the football world. It’s also a joy to hear news reels and interviews with men who not only achieved an above standard grade point average in school, but also know what that was in the first place.
No…before you start, I am not knocking football players – just pointing out some very real facts that we’ve all seen during on-air interviews where the player can barely figure out his lines, let alone what stadium he’s playing in at the time.
RGIII – Robert Griffin, III is different – set apart from the crowd. And he proved this on Saturday when he marched out in front of a 20,000 person crowd who gathered at the FedEx field in Washington to welcome him to his new home. RGIII may have shown a bit of the ‘butterflies’ in his stomach, but his nerves basically remained in check as he stood on a stage in front of these fans who are hoping beyond hope that the Washington Redskins are on a path to comeback. Yes, no jokes please, the Skins still have very loyal fans and with Robert Griffin, they may actually see themselves at a Super Bowl again one of these fine days.
This little meet-and-greet that RGIII attended, as the Skins management called it, was a place for Robert to shine. This was one of those ‘platforms’ where RGIII could have very well come out, stamped his feet, threw his hands in the air, and did a victory dance just gloating about the fact that HE was the end-all-and-be-alll that would bring the Washington Redskins back to the top of the heap. Instead, he was one of the most humble players seen in a very long time.
Up until now, the whole world as seen Robert as a real stand-up guy, and he is. And although he’s certainly excited about his new job and wants to do his absolute best to live up to people‘s expectations, he’s not a guy who stood up on that podium and promised the win to come in his rookie year. The Redskins Number 1 draft pick gave back to the fans and the community who had attended, simply by stating that THEY (and not him) were the ones who brought the glory and excitement back to the city and THEY were ready to win! He threw all the kindness back at them.
Yes, there may have been a slight twitch of nerves because RGIII doesn’t want to let them down. Looking toward the future, I have to say this is one man who shouldn’t be nervous. Can he simply go out and win it all for his new hometown in his rookie year? Probably not – but he is most assuredly the man who can be the ‘core’ of the Redskins and bring them back to their glory days.
As the cheers went on, the feeling became almost overpowering (and that was just from a TV set so goodness knows what it felt like to FGIII). All of a sudden, it felt a lot like that scene from Revenge of the Nerds when We Are the Champions plays at the end. What do I mean? I mean camaraderie, cheers, excitement, thrills – everyone on that field opened up their mouths and, with all the power of the incredible cast of Glee, screamed out ‘RGIII’ over and over again.
Griffin again was humble and single-handedly changed the scream into that of the “Hail to the Redskins” victory song. I’m telling you, it was suddenly as if the ‘Eagle had landed’ and Armstrong had taken that Giant leap for mankind. I’m serious, readers – this was one of THOSE moments. Oddly enough, I would’ve thought with all the media hype, Peyton Manning’s little announcement a month ago would’ve had Broncos fans acting like that, but his was far quieter. Hmmm…must be the fact that Tebow took the ‘spirit’ with him when he left…literally.
Anyway, Griffin knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that he has a great well of pride behind him. He also knows it’s going to take a whole lot of effort on his part to live up to the Skins’ fans expectations. The one extremely lucky thing for the Redskins is that RGIII seems to have no self-doubt whatsoever. He’s calm, takes things as they come, yet he will not be one to back down and walk gently into that goodnight. By taking the smart route in all of his press conferences, stating that he is NOT the whole team, is a perfect beginning to what already feels like a ‘star‘s‘ careers.
RGIII knows he has the guys behind and in front of him, and he is not the one and only man out there who has to change the past twenty years overnight.
So, why wasn’t he the number one pick? Is RGIII’s cool-as-a-cucumber act for real? Certainly his outward appearance – a genuine smile and loads of self-esteem -speak highly that RGIII will do his ultimate best to be the leader the Skins have been searching for…but Andrew Luck also has a little something in the aura that surrounds him.
So remember fans as time goes whizzing by and the two careers of these men grow that even though Andrew Luck may have come out of the gate at Number One, RGIII is no understudy. Although Robert Griffin is walking into a whirlwind, if his ‘cool’ remains in place, in a few short years people may just be saying Luck, who?
Until Next Time, Everybody,
This article is sponsored by: www.befirstinc.com