The Washington Redskins gave up an awful lot for the right to draft Robert Griffin III. In fact, it was the first time a team parted with three 1st-round picks since the famous 1989 Herschel Walker trade (ask Vikings fans how that turned out).
But while the Walker trade may be the best comparison, a more relevant example may be the Chicago Bears trade for Jay Cutler prior to the 2009 NFL Draft.
The Bears sent their 2009 and 2010 1st-round picks, a 2009 3rd-round pick and Kyle Orton to the Broncos in exchange for what they believed was a franchise quarterback (Cutler).
And while Cutler did lead the Bears to the NFC Championship Game two seasons ago, the Bears haven’t exactly risen to the join the game’s elite.
So what went wrong?
The Bears thought adding a franchise quarterback would answer all their problems, but Cutler joined a franchise with an aging and struggling offensive line and an undersized and ineffective receiving corps. And without 1st-round picks in 2009 or 2010, the Bears had to wait until the 2011 draft before spending a meaningful draft pick on either position (Gabe Carimi).
The Redskins are now in a similar position. RG3 may be on board, but he’s just one man. And, unlike Cutler, Griffin is an unproven commodity who still needs a good deal of development.
I wholeheartedly believe that you need a franchise quarterback to win in the NFL, and RG3 might be that guy. But you also don’t win with just a franchise quarterback.
Until the Redskins surround Griffin with talent, they aren’t going anywhere fast.