DeAngelo Hall: Players weren't behind RGIII's benching


When former Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan pulled the plug on Robert Griffin III with three games left to play, one of the reported reasons for the benching was an attempt to maintain credibility in the locker room.

Was Griffin playing so poorly that teammates no longer believed in him?

Not so, according to cornerback DeAngelo Hall.

"A lot of guys in that locker room kind of raised the question, like, 'Why are we doing this?'" Hall said Tuesday evening on Fox Sports 1's "Fox Football Daily," via The Washington Post. "Kind of like what you heard Kyle (Shanahan) say: 'I want my starting quarterback out there.' A lot of the players in the locker room, those were their sentiments."

Football legend John Madden wasn't alone in questioning the integrity of Shanahan's bizarre decision. Hall made it clear that the idea of "protecting" RGIII for the offseason was a peculiar notion.

To Shanahan's credit, Redskins players didn't realize the coach-quarterback relationship had deteriorated until the benching.

"And then it wasn't until RG(III) really spoke about it," Hall continued, "saying, 'I don't think Mike likes me,' and things like that, that we in the locker room really started to notice it."

Despite reports that an "operatic" Griffin had alienated his receivers and some members of the offensive line, Hall remains confident that the 2012 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year has what it takes to lead the Redskins on and off the field.

"Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely I think so," Hall said. "From the first day that kid came into that locker room, all he wanted to do is impress us, try to prove to us that he would do anything to help us win football games. It was never about him."

Now shifted from Mike Shanahan's tutelage to Jay Gruden's, Griffin has an opportunity to press the "reset" button on his stalled career.

If Hall truly has his finger on the pulse of the locker room, Griffin will be welcomed back to the starting lineup with open arms. Regardless of his teammates' feelings, winning is still the best deodorant.

The latest "Around The League Podcast" featured a very special in-studio visit from Bears star Brandon Marshall.