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.
And although it was just the first step on the way back from the injury, Browns coach Hue Jackson was impressed by Griffin’s first on-field work in nearly three months after the team designated him for a return injured reserve on Wednesday morning.
“That is important because that is probably the first time he has done that much work,” Jackson said. “He was out there moving around. He looked like Robert. We still have some work to do. Obviously, he is not cleared medically for contact, so this is the first stage of this. We still have some hurdles to jump, but we will get through them.”
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.
But despite being unable to play, Griffin travelled with the team, helped coach up players on the sidelines and stayed involved in the game plan as much as possible.
“He has done a good job that way,” Jackson said. “I think he wants it badly, to be out there with his teammates. He wants to do the work and be a part of it and help us get to where we want to go.
“I have a great respect for that. He has been part of the grind the whole time. It is a good showing by him to show that he wants to be out there. Obviously, he could have kind of fallen off totally, but he didn’t. That is a plus for him.”
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.
And to Jackson, that happiness speaks to Griffin’s desire to be a successful NFL quarterback.
“He loves football,” Jackson said. “I have always known that about Robert. He really likes football. He likes everything that comes with preparing and getting ready for a game. I am not surprised by him being excited. When it is something you love to do, you want to be out there doing it.”