Marc Weinreich
Wednesday December 11th, 2013

Robert Griffin III has not spoken with Redskins owner Dan Snyder about being shut down for the season. (Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) Robert Griffin III has not spoken with Redskins owner Dan Snyder about being shut down for the season. (Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

Robert Griffin III confirmed on Wednesday that Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanhan has told him that he is being shut down for the rest of the season.

Speaking at a press conference, RGIII was asked what it's like being him now in the wake of the news that he's being sidelined for Kirk Cousins. After a standout rookie season, he admitted on Wednesday that this past week has been especially difficult but he's just "blessed to be in the NFL."

"It's a tough time, and God's testing me, but I still feel blessed to be in the NFL, to be with the guys in that locker room...try to find ways to make it better."

Last year's AP Offensive Rookie of the Year spoke to reporters four days before the 25-year-old Cousins leads the Redskins into Atlanta on Sunday for a matchup against the Falcons as both teams look to improve upon dismal 3-10 records.

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Griffin, who called Cousins a "smart kid" and said he hasn't spoken with Redskins owner Dan Snyder about the decision. He repeatedly declined to comment on questions about whether he believes Shanahan's choice to shut him down for the rest of the season has to do with keeping him healthy for next year.

Shanahan has expressed concern about the number of times Griffin has been sacked this season (38), including 24 times in the last five games. He told reporters that his decision to go with Cousins on Sunday was simply "what’s best for the organization."

Cousins told the media on Wednesday afternoon that he's been impressed with the way RGIII has "taken the high road" after learning of the news about his demotion:

"He doesn't back down from a challenge. He's handling it with a lot of maturity...RGIII has taken the high road and stayed positive."

On the season, Cousins recorded 107 yards on 12-for-25 passing with no touchdowns and two interceptions. Griffin has 16 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions. He threw for 20 touchdowns and five interceptions last year, but perhaps most surprising is the fact that he has no rushing touchdowns this year after recording seven last season.

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