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Rick Snider: RGIII takes a more careful approach to recovery

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It seems Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III received a self-preservation implant during his offseason surgery, too.

Last seen buckling against Seattle in the NFL playoffs after tearing two knee ligaments, Griffin showed too much grit in compromising his own well-being and the team's investment in him by refusing to yield. Griffin didn't want to disappoint teammates. Instead, he only made it worse.

Griffin is feeling better nowadays, making a Super Bowl week appearance and even releasing a new Adidas commercial via Twitter that declared #allinforweek1. It showed him blowing up the field for a new day.

Wait, maybe that was FedEx Field groundskeepers re-sodding the dirt field.

"Starting Week 1 will be the result of healing, hard work, dedication [and] God's anointing. No rush, just determination," tweeted @RGIII.

The Internet buzz quickly spread just as Adidas surely wanted. Griffin was thinking about opening day after a reconstructed ACL that often means a much longer recovery.

Nobody will truly know when Griffin's ready until practicing and that's not happening before August. Maybe Griffin is Superman and returns quicker than most athletes, maybe he misses the season. February is not the month to decide.

Was Griffin showing that blind determination again? Playing the second half against Seattle was reckless and coach Mike Shanahan should have benched Griffin for safety, but he didn't and the worst scenario happened. Somebody needs to protect Griffin after a system-wide failure against Seattle.

Around the same time, Griffin tweeted this: "Feel like I need to say this..Although my goal is to start Week 1, that doesn't mean I will compromise my career to do so."

Ah, someone finally came to their senses and restrained Griffin's zeal. There's nothing wrong with Griffin working towards an opening-day return, but there has to be balance in the approach. Otherwise, another setback might cost him the entire season or even his career.

Griffin's desire helped make him NFL Rookie of the Year. But if the Redskins also want a few Player of the Year awards, Griffin needs to be protected from his own determination. That second tweet shows Griffin knows opening day might not happen, and that's a good thing. He won't risk himself by worrying about one game. It's about worrying over risking one's career.

If Griffin can't trust the team's doctors and coaches to protect him from himself, then Griffin must do it himself. That second tweet was a sign he now gets it -- an injured player does teammates no good playing hurt.

One hour later, Griffin was tweeting with teammate Niles Paul over food. Another sponsor to satisfy. Fortunately, Griffin can risk his taste buds on whatever he eats without fear of missing a game.

Hopefully he'll learn from postseason victory tastes like soon.

Examiner columnist Rick Snider has covered local sports since 1978. Read more on Twitter @Snide_Remarks or email rsnider@washingtonexaminer.com.

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