November 18, 2012; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III (10) runs with the ball during the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Quarterback Rankings: No. 9


Every two days, Rishi Pochiraju will reveal a quarterback on his grand list of quarterback rankings. Each quarterback will receive a grade out of 50 – 10 points for each category. See his page for earlier ranked quarterbacks. Up next: number 9.

#9. Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins

Robert Griffin III did everything that was asked of him and even more last year. He was one of the greatest rookies to ever play, and he backed that up last year.

After a slow start, he and his team got hot down the stretch, won seven straight, and wrapped up DC’s first division title in 13 years. An argument can be made that if Griffin didn’t hurt his knee against Baltimore, there’s no doubt the team would’ve beaten Seattle in the playoff game.

Yeah, yeah, the knee injury. Health is definitely a concern, but all signs are pointing toward a Week 1 return for the Redskins’ star.

Physical traits and athleticism

This man is just fast. The world-class speed Griffin brings to the position hasn’t been seen in the NFL before – his athletic ability is off the charts. This helped him set the record for rushing yards in a season as a quarterback for a rookie. The only knockoff of Griffin’s athleticism is that he isn’t as tall as coaches would like – he’s somewhere between 6-2 and 6-3. Grade: 9.5/10

Arm talent

Griffin has a rocket arm, stretching the field with ease. The Shanahans surprisingly did not incorporate much of the very deep passing game into the offense last year, but when they did, it worked like a charm. At times, Griffin does use his arm talent an excessive amount, failing to set his feet in the pocket and throwing with only his arm – this is possibly because of his 2009 ACL injury, which forced him to throw from a chair during the early stages of his rehab. Grade: 8.5/10

Mechanics

Griffin’s three- and five-step dropbacks are excellent, and he sets his feet on throws with or without a hitch on his dropback. He doesn’t always step into his throws (see section above), but this can be corrected by coaching and adapting to an NFL offense. His release is quick and he keeps the ball high and tight – he doesn’t get the ball knocked out in the pocket. Grade: 8.5/10

Mental make-up

RGIII is a smart quarterback with a very high football IQ. He didn’t do much of reading defenses last season, but that should change in the near future. However, he did start to recognize blitz packages and change plays at the line of scrimmage, although he didn’t analyze coverages and movement often. He’s been brought along into the NFL nicely by Mike and Kyle Shanahan. Grade: 8.5/10

Intangibles

Griffin’s off-field character is well-documented. He comes across as a genuine man with great competitive spirit. He’s a hard worker, and that’s proven by how his rehab has gone this offseason. Dr. James Andrews called him “superhuman”. He is a captain of the Redskins football team, which validates his leadership and respect of his teammates. Grade: 9/10

Overall impression

Last year’s offensive rookie of the year is in for another great showing in 2013, pending his return from injury. He did all he could last year, and Redskins fans are hoping he doesn’t do too much. Overall Grade: 44/50

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