Robert Griffin III has received plenty of praise for his debut performance. Some of his throws were just bananas. Those are the plays we show in highlight reels, but less attention has been paid to the supposedly "routine" aspects to the Washington Redskins' offense.
Washington's attack borrowed liberally from concepts Griffin used at Baylor. The key aspect: Griffin has options when he comes to the line of scrimmage. While the offensive line and backfield perform a running play, the receivers run a different passing play. Shanahan stressed Griffin wasn't using an audible; Griffin decided what play to run based on what the defense showed him.
"We really don't know what's going to happen until the defense plays, so we had running plays called and all of a sudden they gave us certain looks to take the running game away, and we threw a couple of bubbles early," Shanahan said. "And it's pretty impressive when a young guy comes in and plays with that composure especially in an environment like this."
This is a concept called "packaging plays" that is starting to change modern play calling. Brown wrote at length on the topic previously far better than we could. It's one of the biggest trends hitting NFL offense, and it largely comes from the college game.
Shanahan deserves credit for blending his system with the concepts Griffin used at Baylor. It all feels new, just like RG3's game. It feels different, and that's exciting. It feels like the future.
The only constant in football is its constant evolution. We can't wait to see how Shanahan and Griffin evolve together.Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.