When the night finally ended for him late in the fourth quarter, he lay crumpled on the turf at FedEx Field after fumbling and then collapsing with his leg twisted around him in a frightening moment for anyone watching. Among those who were watching was Wilson, who went to a knee and prayed for his fellow rookie.
“He’s a tremendous football player,” Wilson said. “I just prayed he was all right.”
Just how bad the injury is won’t be known until Griffin gets an MRI on Monday. He said after the 24-14 loss that he wasn’t sure himself whether he had further injured it.
But the dreadlocked rookie star made it clear that standing on the sideline watching the game wasn’t an option.
He carried the Redskins into the playoffs, and they weren’t going to play without him.
“I had to go out there and do what I could to help the team win,” he said. “Period.”
It was a disconcerting end to a spectacular season for Griffin, whose personality and promise got him sandwich shop commercials even before he started winning games for the Redskins. He and Luck started the year as the most talked about pair of quarterbacks coming into the NFL in years, and both lived up to their billing by carrying their teams into the playoffs.
Luck, though, couldn’t overcome a Baltimore defense fired up by the pending retirement of Ray Lewis. Luck was pressured all day, and his receivers dropping six passes didn’t help as Indianapolis was eliminated 24-9 by the Ravens.
And while Griffin looked as though he would pile up some points for the Redskins by opening the game with two touchdown drives, he felt the knee go while planting to pass on the second drive and was never the same. By halftime, his team was barely clinging to the lead, and he faced a talk with Shanahan about his immediate future.