ASHBURN - Mike Shanahan met with the media Wednesday for his pre-draft press conference. With the Redskins picking at number two, there's little uncertainty as to who they will select, Shanahan spoke glowingly about the team's future draft pick, Robert Griffin III.
Here's a transcript of what Shanahan had to say about his future quarterback:
On what he likes about Griffin:
"Really, everything. I just like the way he handles himself. He finished college in three and half years. He's an overachiever as a person. He's got great parents. His work ethic is off the charts. I love the way he handles himself. Then there are the football aspects. He's got great speed, he's does a great job in the pocket. [When] throwing the ball down-field, he's a guy that doesn't look at the rush. He's got all the attributes that you look for in a quarterback. I'm going to be very happy if he's on our football team."
"Nothing's 100 percent yet, so I gotta say 99.9 right now."
On what a franchise QB can do for an organization:
"I think when you're talking about a franchise quarterback, obviously that guy has got to go out there and do it. And one guy doesn't do it, you got to have a supporting cast. I think we've made some strides over the last couple years of putting that type of team together, where you do bring a quarterback in and hopefully he has the weapons to give him a chance to be successful. We all know it doesn't happen overnight, there are some growing pains that go with the position. But the better your defense is, or the better your offense may be, obviously the less pressure you have to put on the quarterback. When you're talking about a franchise quarterback, you're looking at a guy that really has all the physical and mental attributes that you're looking for in a quarterback, and now he's got to go out and do it on the field. "
On having to play him early:
"You want to make sure that he's ready to play. So you gotta go through the process. You just don't want to throw a guy in there right away until he feels comfortable. And it's a growing process, it doesn't happen right away. Obviously when you give up a couple of firsts and a second, you want that guy to get in there as quick as possible. But you want to do it at the right time and make sure he's ready, and [gives] you the best chance to help you win."
On his supporting cast:
"We're a younger football team. We'll be more competitive. We've got a plan that I think is taking shape, and part of it is finishing this offseason with free agency - it's not done yet - as well as the draft. We're looking forward to that. We've spent a lot of time here over the last couple months to get into position to get what we consider a franchise pick no matter what at the number two position. We made that decision early, and we were able to orchestrate that on the first chance you get to trade. Obviously the rest [of the team-building] is getting a good draft like we had last year. "
On selecting a potential franchise QB in the draft:
"I think everybody would like that franchise guy. That's the goal of every team in the National Football League. How you become a franchise guy is you got to go out there and do it on the field. The first thing you look for are the characteristics or the attributes that give you a chance to be that guy. We feel that Robert does have all those qualities...And that's what you're looking for. You're looking for a guy that from a character standpoint will be the first guy there and the last guy to leave...We believe Robert is that type of guy. I'm looking forward to spending time with him, and doing the things you do to get a quarterback ready to play"
On how the organization fell in love with Griffin:
"You want a guy that wants to be the best about what he does. That's what excited us is to see his commitment both on the football field and [in] the classroom. To be around his parents, to be around his girlfriend, to see him handle himself in all different types of situations [we saw] a guy that we feel fits in great with this organization. [He's] a guy that we want to develop to be the face of the organization. He knows there is a lot of work, there's a lot of pressure that goes with it. We understand that as well, but we're looking forward to it.