hR Weekly Guest Column From SBRForum.com
With Griffin III Questionable, Sportsbooks Hesitant to Post Line for Redskins-Vikings
The Washington Redskins will try and get their record back to the .500 mark Sunday, but it doesn’t figure to be easy. They will have to beat a red-hot Minnesota Vikings team and may have to do it without the services of quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Griffin is recovering from a concussion suffered in the Redskins 24-17 loss to the Atlanta Falcons. He was cleared by the NFL to resume practice on Wednesday, but head coach Mike Shanahan said Griffin will not play unless “completely healthy.” If Griffin can’t go, Shanahan said he will select between second-year pro Kirk Cousins—who threw two interceptions in relief duty last week—and veteran Rex Grossman.
In addition to the Griffin situation, the Redskins will have to find a way to get better production from a defensive unit that is giving up 29.4 points a game to rank 28th in the NFL. A pattern emerging this season is the Redskins play well for three quarters and then fade in the final 15 minutes. They have been tied or in the lead in every game after three quarters, but have been outscored by an aggregate of 63-27 in the fourth quarter this season.
This week they catch a Vikings team that has won three straight and is hitting on all cylinders. Second-year quarterback Christian Ponder and running back Adrian Peterson have been exceptional and the defense has also been strong. Minnesota is allowing just 15.8 points a game to rank 6th in the NFL.
If Griffin can’t go for the Redskins, even more of the load will fall on the shoulders of Alfred Morris. The rookie sixth-round pick has run for 491 yards this season, including a career-high 115 yards last week, to rank sixth in the NFL.
With the questions surrounding Griffin, most books have not posted a line in their NFL odds. A few of the more adventurous betting shops have the Redskins listed as 2.5-point favorites. That could be a gift if Griffin cannot play so continue to monitor the situation before firing.