Washington Redskins announce that Kirk Cousins, not Robert Griffin III, will start at QB against Atlanta Falcons


October 7, 2012; Landover, MD, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) talks with Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (12) after their game at FedEx Field. The Falcons won 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

When the Falcons host the Washington Professional Football Team on Sunday, the visiting team will be playing a different starting quarterback than you may expect.

Washington announced on Wednesday afternoon (after multiple outlets had broken the story) that franchise quarterback Robert Griffin III will be benched in favor of Kirk Cousins against the Falcons in Week 15. This is a bit of a surprise, but not an all-out shock, given that RGIII’s play has suffered in recent weeks, and the situation surrounding head coach Mike Shanahan is, at the very least, tumultuous.

Because we aren’t a Redskins-affiliated outlet (obviously), I will flatly ignore the reasoning (or lack thereof) for the Griffin benching, and instead focus on the Falcons. In 5 career games (1 start), the 25-year-old Cousins has thrown for 573 yards with 4 touchdowns against 5 interceptions. However, some believe that he is a future NFL starter and his 57.4 QBR is in the respectable range that would rank him 18th among QB’s this season.

We’ll break down the game in full later in the week, but this seems like a small “win” for the Falcons. Even with Griffin’s issues this year, there is little doubt that he is the more talented player, and against what has been a porous Atlanta defense, it is unquestionably a positive to see him on the sidelines.