"When it's all said and done, after all the film we've gone through, after all the offseason activity, all the training camp footage, we feel like at this time, Kirk Cousins gives us the best chance to win and that's where we're going," Gruden said. "It's Kirk's team."
Gruden said the decision to install Cousins as the starter wasn't tied to Robert Griffin III's concussion, but rather because of Cousins' play on the field.
"Kirk has done an outstanding job," he said. "Robert has done some great things no question, we have total faith in all three of them. But moving forward, with all the things we've studied over the course of training camp and OTAs, we just feel like Kirk has earned the right to be the starting quarterback for 2015."
The about-face came quickly at Redskins Park after a week of questions regarding RGIII's health. Griffin remains in the NFL's concussion protocol after an independent neurologist reversed course on RGIII's playing status for Saturday's preseason tilt against the Ravens. That left Cousins to open Washington's third preseason game, where he made his case as the best option to be the team's starter over Griffin and Colt McCoy.
After Griffin was named starter early in the offseason, Gruden wouldn't even say whether RGIII would be No. 2 or 3 QB when he is eventually cleared.
Gruden added that there has been no discussions about cutting or trading Griffin in light of the demotion.
"It's a good problem to have to have three quarterbacks that are competing and working their butts off and I feel like all three of them are capable quarterbacks," he said. "Some people say when you have three, you don't have one and I disagree with that. We have three good quarterbacks that I feel good about. I just feel like Kirk right now gives us the best chance."