CLEVELAND -- Cleveland Browns quarterback Robert Griffin III returned to practice on Wednesday after 10 weeks away from the team because of a broken coracoid bone in his left shoulder.
Despite the Browns going through six quarterbacks during the early part of the season and rotating through those who have returned from injury, the young veteran could not be happier to be back on the field with his teammates.
“It was awesome to get back out there with the team and to move around a little bit,” Griffin said. “It is always fun. You always appreciate things when it is taken away from you. I enjoyed practice and liked being out there with my teammates before I was hurt. Now, I get the chance to be back out there and I just continue to appreciate it more and more.”
The Browns designated Griffin for return from injured reserve on Wednesday morning after the young veteran was medically cleared to practice. With the move, the Browns now have 21 days to activate Griffin, or he would be forced to remain on injured reserve for the balance of the season.
“We are all on the same timetable,” Griffin said. “It is just about making sure that I am healthy -- not healthy enough, not almost there, just healthy. I want to go out there and help this team win games. I am on the same page as Coach, (Sashi Brown), the doctors and trainers, united front and that.
“I am not in pain at this time in the season. I just want to go out there and be healthy and help this team win games. It was fun to be back out there. I think the guys can feel the energy coming from me. I am like a little kid out there with fresh legs, so they were probably all telling me to slow down.”
Near the end of the Browns’ season-opening loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, Griffin scrambled out of the pocket and ran toward the right sideline.
Griffin was pushed from behind by Eagles defensive back Ron Brooks into rookie cornerback Jalen Mills, who hit the quarterback in the upper torso. Griffin was evaluated on the sideline and finished the game, but further examinations revealed the broken bone.
One day after the season opener, the Browns placed Griffin on injured reserve.
“It is going to be a matter of if my bones are healed or not,” Griffin said. “That is nothing that I can control. I can make sure not to do anything stupid and just go out and practice and do what they ask me to do and let God take care of the rest.
“I feel like I have done everything I can up until this point. Now, getting back onto the practice field, it is just about getting in rhythm and timing with the guys. My expectation is whatever the doctors say, whatever Coach says, I am 100 percent on board with that.”
Against the Eagles, Griffin completed just 12 of his 26 throws for 190 yards with no touchdowns and one interception, and was the Browns’ second-leading rusher with 37 yards on five scrambles outside of the pocket.
And despite the difficult start to his Browns career, Griffin “no doubt” believes he can be the team’s starting quarterback going forward.
“I have the confidence in that,” Griffin said. “I can’t speak for Coach or anyone else, but they have expressed that to me. I still feel like I can be the guy for this team, for this organization. I look forward to going out there and proving it.”