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“Don’t Condemn Guys”: Former NFL Rookie of the Year Robert Griffin III Defends College Players Opting Out of Bowl Games

Published 01/02/2022, 4:41 PM EST

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Every rookie dreams of playing in the NFL. In order to reach the destination, every player has had to go through a journey. Part of the NFL journey is high school and collegiate level football [NCAA]. From Robert Griffin III to Tom Brady, every player has gone through this grind.

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At the beginning of every season, the NFL Draft takes place, which unfortunately coincides with the collegiate special Sugar Bowl games. Players who qualify for the bowl games are often the cream of the crop. However, many opt out of the games to protect themselves from injuries ahead of the draft. Players who do this are often looked down upon and are, at times, called traitors.


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Robert Griffin III shows support to players missing Sugar Bowl 

Recently, Ole Miss QB Matt Corrall suffered a gruesome injury ahead of the drafts. Matt is arguably the brightest rookie to be featured in the draft. However, his untimely injury in the third quarter against the Baylor Bears throws a wrench in his draft plans.

Former NFL rookie of the year and Washington quarterback Robert Griffin III, just like Matt, took the popular route. RG3 chose to play the Bowl games, due to which he became the Washington Redskins’ second overall pick.


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After Corral’s gruesome injury, the free agent took to Twitter to air his frustration over people judging players for saving them for the draft. According to him, the decision to play Bowl is a player’s choice, and it shouldn’t be a big issue. “After we won the Heisman in 2011, I made the decision to play in our bowl game because our program hadn’t won one in 19 years. That was my decision,” said RG3

He then requested the fans to not hate players for opting out citing Matt’s injury as the prime reason behind the practice. “Don’t condemn guys for opting out. Matt Corral’s injury is exactly why they do. Pray he is okay and his draft stock isn’t impacted,” requested the free agent.


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The bowl games are honestly insignificant in the bigger scheme of things. Playing at the sugar bowl is pale in comparison to the generational wealth that can be made in the drafts.


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Hence, agreeing with the RG3 might not be a bad idea for players. What are your thoughts on this controversy? Do you have a differing opinion? Let us know in the comments below!

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Suresh Menon

624 articles

Suresh Menon is an NFL and Football writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing BMM from St Xavier's College with his specialization in Advertising. Juventus is his favorite soccer club and he one day plans to go to Italy and watch a Juve match live.