On Wednesday, the NFL Scouting Combine began to hit the mainstream with coaches stepping up to the podium in front of legions of reporters. While some of the gatherings were tame and uninteresting, a handful were fairly explosive.
Here’s a quick rundown of the main storylines:
Gruden committed to Griffin
Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden made it known Robert Griffin III is his starting quarterback going into training camp. Griffin, who led the Redskins to an NFC East title in his rookie season before struggling through 2013 and 2014, was thought to be on the trading block at the conclusion of the year. Now, Griffin is in the driver’s seat ahead of Kirk Cousins.
Fox unsure about Cutler
Chicago Bears head coach John Fox was asked if he believes in Jay Cutler moving forward, and Fox was noncommittal. Fox is keeping his options open, something of a bombshell considering Cutler is in the beginning stages of a $126 million deal. The only way Cutler leaves Chicago is via trade, and that will be difficult considering Cutler’s contract. Still, the Bears met with free-agent quarterback Josh McCown, who played with Chicago from 2011-13. This is certainly a situation that deserves monitoring through the offseason.
Cleveland looking for a quarterback
Johnny Manziel had a horrible rookie season and might already be looking at a backup role when he returns from rehab. Cleveland Browns head coach Mike Pettine spoke about his quarterback situation and said the organization is proud of Manziel for getting help, but that it is also looking for upgrades at the position. The Browns have a solid roster in many spots, but is among the worst under center. Holding the 12th and 19th-overall selections in the 2015 NFL Draft, Cleveland might be in play for a quarterback.
Peterson gets support from Spielman
Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman stated that he expects Adrian Peterson to be back with the team in 2015. Peterson was placed on the commissioner’s exempt list for the final 15 games of 2014, stemming from a child abuse case. Minnesota would stand to save $13 million in cap space if it released Peterson, although a rushing tandem of Matt Asiata and Jerick McKinnon might make Spielman uneasy.