Robert Griffin III said he was hungry. No wonder the Washington Redskins quarterback devoured the Philadelphia Eagles.
In a desperation game for both teams, Washington ended its three-game losing streak and extended Philadelphia's to six. The Redskins blew out the Eagles 31-6 on Sunday in a sloppy effort before 79,327 at FedEx Field who were unused to a outcome being decided positively entering the fourth quarter.
Griffin threw four touchdown passes, each a beauty. A 61-yarder split two Philadelphia defenders to receiver Santana Moss; it was as fine a deep ball by a Redskins quarterback since Sonny Jurgensen spiraled them four decades ago.
"It was an 'Oh no, oh yes,'?" coach Mike Shanahan joked of the score.
The 49-yarder to wide-open Aldrick Robinson half a football field away allowed Griffin to make an extended pause, as if he were longingly admiring a Van Gogh in a museum. The 6-yarder to Darryl Young on the Redskins' second snap was a frozen rope. The 17-yarder to Logan Paulsen was in a pocket so tight Griffin barely could see his target.
Fans chanted "RGIII" so often that the few remaining at the end of Shanahan's biggest blowout victory in Washington barely chanted the traditional "We want Dallas" in anticipation of Thursday's game.
After two less-than-spectacular games, Griffin returned to star status with a perfect 158.3 passer rating, completing 14 of 15 passes for 200 yards. Comparatively, Philadelphia counterpart Nick Foles was 21-for-46 for 204 yards, two interceptions and a 40.5 rating.
"Robert is going to go out there and be special," Moss said. "He really ignites our fire. When he is doing his thing, he's on fire, and then it just rubs off on everyone else. I'm glad to have a guy like that."
Maybe Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck will wrestle rookie of the year honors away from Griffin, but the vote should be close. Griffin again showed why he's invaluable to Washington, which wouldn't have three of its four wins without him.
If Griffin wasn't throwing touchdowns, he was two-stepping along the sidelines for 84 yards on 12 carries. Several long gains emerged after blitzes seemed destined to result in negative yardage. Griffin even played the role of matador on one sideline run to evade a defender.
"I didn't second guess what my instincts were telling me," Griffin said. "When to throw, when not to throw. When to run, when not to run. When to get down, when to get out of bounds."
It was Griffin's first game since he was named an offensive captain by his teammates. He seemed genuinely touched to be honored as a rookie.
"I'm a 22-year-old kid to most of them, so for them to vote me as their captain [means] they truly believe in me," Griffin said. "I told them, 'Thank you,' because it's not something to take lightly. To have that 'C' on your chest means something. I'm extremely proud to be their captain."