NFL Insider: RG3 is starting to feel like RG3

Posted Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Robert Griffin III has been here before, and we know how that chapter turned out. Griffin rebounded from a torn ACL at Baylor in 2009 to win the Heisman Trophy two years later.

He still is writing this chapter in the “Book of RG3.”

“I think he’s feeling pretty good,” Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said in a conference call last week. “I think he’s a lot better than he was at the beginning and starting to feel comfortable.”

Griffin isn’t the same quarterback he was last year when he won offensive rookie of the year honors.

He has completed 62.4 percent of his passes for 1,202 yards with six touchdowns, four interceptions and an 85.5 rating. He also has 72 rushing yards on 18 carries. The Redskins are 1-3.

Through four games last season, he had completed 69.4 percent of his passes for 1,070 yards with four touchdowns, an interception and a 103.2 rating. He also had 234 rushing yards and four touchdowns on 41 carries. The Redskins were 2-2.

“It’s a very trying time, but at the end of the day, you can’t let anything steal your joy,” Griffin said in a conference call last week. “You have to go out there and play the game that you love, and play it the way you know how. The start of the season didn’t go the way we wanted it to, but we got the win before the bye, and that’s what we have to keep doing, keep winning.”

Griffin said he is starting to feel like himself again. Finally.

He could have seen that one coming.

Griffin tore his right ACL during a September 2009 game against Northwestern State and missed nine games. It wasn’t until the fifth game of the 2010 season that Griffin had his first 300-yard passing day and showed that he had regained his running ability. He had 380 yards and three touchdowns against Kansas, running for another 64 yards and a touchdown on eight carries.

“I think my [Baylor] coaches and some others said it was after the fourth game [that he returned to 100 percent],” Griffin said. “But as a player, you always have to think once you step on that field you’re ready to go, and that’s the way I think.”

Griffin always believed he would play in the season opener this season after surgery on his right knee Jan. 9. He tore the anterior cruciate and lateral cruciate ligaments and meniscus during the Redskins’ playoff loss to the Seahawks.

“You come back, and everything is not just gravy from the get-go but you keep pushing through,” Griffin said. “You keep fighting, and it’s one thing we always said, ‘You always finish through the line. You never pull up before the finish line.’ We’re far away from that finish line, so we’re going to keep pushing.”

Jerod-Eddie’s chance

Defensive lineman Tony Jerod-Eddie of the 49ers has seen his playing time increase each of the past three games.

After being inactive in Week 2, he played 18 defensive plays against the Colts, 21 against the Rams and 29 against the Texans last week. He could play even more this week.

Ray McDonald, who has started every game except one at left defensive tackle since 2011, tore his right biceps last week. He hopes to play through it, but Jerod-Eddie and Demarcus Dobbs are at the ready.

“I’m ready,” Jerod-Eddie said in a phone interview. “I’ve been ready. Coach prepares us well, prepares me like I’m going to play the whole game every week. It really won’t be anything different. We’ll see what happens with Ray.”

The Texas A&M product had a fumble recovery two weeks ago against the Rams. It was “nothing special,” he said, before being reminded that every turnover is special.

“True,” Jerod-Eddie said. “That’s true.”

He was more impressed with his interception last week. Jerod-Eddie dropped in coverage and picked off Texans quarterback Matt Schaub in the second half. It was his first interception since his high school days at DeSoto.

“That was a great play call by coach [Vic] Fangio,” Jerod-Eddie said. “I was going off the block the offensive lineman gave me. He gave me a drop read. I went in and acted like I was going to rush, dropped out and when I dropped, the quarterback was eyeing it. He just kind of threw it right to me. I caught it, and tried to get what I could get and get down.”

Jerod-Eddie, who had 147 tackles and seven sacks in 45 games with the Aggies, signed with the 49ers as an undrafted free agent in 2012. He played in only one game last season.

“It was tough,” Jerod-Eddie said. “It was my first time playing football, since I started, that I didn’t play. But I learned a lot from those [veteran] guys. They want us to be as good as they are. That’s the good thing. You’ve got guys ahead of you who want you to get better every day, so that makes it a lot easier coming to work every day knowing you’re not going to play.”

Charean Williams, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @NFLCharean

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