Notes: Redskins’ Robert Griffin III may not miss time

The NFL’s top-rated quarterback might or might not play Sunday when the Redskins visit the Browns.
Nick Wass/Associated Press
The NFL’s top-rated quarterback might or might not play Sunday when the Redskins visit the Browns.

All the medical terms associated with Robert Griffin III’s knee injury can be boiled down to one simple message: It’s not too bad.

Beyond that, there are still some very important unknowns. The NFL’s top-rated quarterback might or might not play Sunday when the Redskins visit the Browns.

The verdict from the team’s medical staff Monday: Griffin has a mild, or Grade 1, sprain of the lateral collateral ligament located on the outside of the knee, caused when he was hit by defensive tackle Haloti Ngata at the end of a scramble late in regulation of the 31-28 overtime win over the Ravens.


‘‘When I looked at it on film,’’ coach Mike Shanahan said, ‘‘I thought it would be worse than it was.’’

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A Grade 1 sprain typically means the ligament is stretched or has some minor tears and usually doesn’t require surgery. Griffin will get multiple treatments daily and will probably have to wear a brace for several weeks.

‘‘You’re hoping with rehab it gets better very quickly,’’ Shanahan said. ‘‘But we don’t know for sure. . . . He’s definitely not ruled out for the Cleveland game.’’

The most severe knee injury usually associated with sports is a season-ending torn ACL, the anterior cruciate ligament. Griffin tore the ACL in his right knee while playing for Baylor in 2009, but Shanahan said Griffin’s reconstructed ACL ‘‘looks great’’ and that there’s ‘‘no problem there.’’

If Griffin isn’t ready fellow rookie Kirk Cousins will make his first start.


The fourth-round pick might not be much of a drop-off, especially after his super-sub performance against the Ravens. When Griffin left for one play, Cousins converted a third-and-6 with a pass to Pierre Garcon that drew a pass interference penalty on Chris Johnson.

When Griffin left for good later in the drive, Cousins completed two passes, and his nice pump fake allowed Garcon to get open for an 11-yard touchdown with 29 seconds left in regulation.

Cousins then did his best RG3 impersonation, running the quarterback draw on the 2-point conversion to tie it.

Shanahan defended the decision to have Griffin return to the game for four plays after the injury, saying he left the decision in the hands of James Andrews, the renowned sports physician who is on the sidelines for most Redskins games.

Ravens fire Cameron

Cam Cameron was fired as offensive coordinator of the Ravens, who have lost two straight and are still striving for consistency in the running and passing game.


Cameron ran the Baltimore offense since 2008 for coach John Harbaugh. Since that time, the Ravens’ attack has repeatedly taken a back seat to the team’s defense, and this year the offense ranks 18th with 344.4 yards per game.

Jim Caldwell, who was hired as quarterbacks coach before the season, will succeed Cameron. Caldwell was head coach of the Colts from 2009-11.

The Ravens (9-4) are stuck in their first losing streak since they dropped three in a row in October 2009 but need only one win to sew up its fifth straight playoff appearance.

Support for Brent

The Cowboys invited nose tackle Josh Brent to Tuesday’s private memorial service for practice squad outside linebacker Jerry Brown. It was Brent’s car that crashed early Saturday morning resulting in Brown being killed. Brent is out on $500,000 bail after being charged with intoxication manslaughter. Brent visited the Valley Ranch complex Monday and met with team doctors and coach Jason Garrett. “We’re going to support Josh 100 percent in every way that we can,” said Garrett, who had a one-on-one meeting with Brent and described him as distraught. “The players will do that, the coaches will do that and everyone in our organization will do that.’’ The Cowboys also announced there’s a chance wide receiver Dez Bryant will miss the rest of the season. Bryant injured his left index finger in a 20-19 victory over Cincinnati on Sunday. Garrett said that Bryant was still being evaluated . . . The 49ers suspended running back Brandon Jacobs for the final three games following a series of posts on social media sites addressing his lack of playing time, including one during the weekend saying he was ‘‘on this team rotting away.’’ The 49ers provided no explanation for why Jacobs had been disciplined. Jacobs has five carries for 7 yards while playing in only two games with the NFC West-leading Niners (9-3-1). He spent his first seven NFL seasons with the Giants . . . Cardinals president Michael Bidwill said a decision on whether Ken Whisenhunt remains as coach will be made after the season. Bidwill called the team’s 58-0 loss Sunday at Seattle “unacceptable’’ but added “there is plenty of blame to go around’’ for Arizona’s franchise-worst nine-game losing streak. The Cardinals also announced they claimed quarterback Brian Hoyer off waivers from the Steelers. Hoyer, who backed up Tom Brady for three seasons in New England, was with the Steelers for three weeks while Ben Roethlisberger was injured. Hoyer takes the roster spot of center Rich Ohrnberger, another former Patriot, who was placed on injured reserve with an injured knee.

Cutler says he’s OK

Bears quarterback Jay Cutler said he expects to play this week against Green Bay after leaving Sunday’s loss at Minnesota with a sore neck. He said he got treatment Monday and ‘‘should be ready to go later in the week.’’ Green Bay can clinch the NFC North with a win . . . Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy have passed concussion tests and could return to practice with the Eagles as early as Tuesday. Vick has missed the last four games and McCoy the last three. Rookies Nick Foles and Bryce Brown have filled in at quarterback and running back, respectively. Coach Andy Reid already has said Foles will remain the starter for the rest of the season. Tight end Brent Celek sustained a concussion in Sunday’s win at Tampa Bay and won’t play against the Bengals on Thursday . . . Bills running back Fred Jackson will miss the remainder of the season with a sprained ligament in his right knee. Jackson, injured in Sunday’s loss to the Rams, won’t require surgery after being diagnosed with a Grade 2 sprain to his MCL . . . Chiefs wide receiver Dwayne Bowe will miss Sunday’s game at Oakland with a rib injury, and coach Romeo Crennel said it’s possible he’ll miss the rest of the year . . . The 49ers-Seahawks game that could decide the NFC West is moving to prime time. The NFL said that San Francisco’s matchup with Seattle on Dec. 23 would be on NBC’s ‘‘Sunday Night Football.’’ The Chargers and Jets were originally in that slot . . . The Raiders reinstated linebacker Rolando McClain from the suspended list and cut starting cornerback Ron Bartell in the team’s latest roster shake-up. McClain had been suspended for two games on Nov. 30 for conduct detrimental to the team after a practice run-in with coach Dennis Allen . . . Tennessee tight end Jared Cook has a torn right rotator cuff and will be placed on injured reserve for the final three games. . . . Former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue will rule Tuesday afternoon on the latest round of player appeals in the NFL’s bounty probe, but any potential punishment will be delayed by a week, a person familiar with the decision said.