Mitchell on RG3, helping more than Cooley

Chris Cooley is hinting at a comeback, but could Brian Mitchell help more for one game? Mitchell thinks so. Plus his thoughts on RG3, Cousins.

Richmond -- These days some only know Brian Mitchell as a D.C. area radio personality on ESPN 980 or perhaps the pundit talking hockey after a Capitals game on Comcast Sportsnet. Of course, most know him as one of the NFL's top return men of all-time and a running back who spent the first 10 of his 14 seasons with the Washington Redskins. Breaking Burgundy recently caught up with Mitchell at Redskins training camp to talk about the current team plus thoughts on previous organizational decisions. First up, we talk Robert Griffin III and whether Mitchell would be more helpful on the field than a certain ex-Redskin tight end...

Breaking Burgundy: Let's start with something fun. Chris Cooley recently talked about returning to the NFL. For one game - not a season, not even a month, but just one game, who can bring more to a team, him or you?

Brian Mitchell: Me.

BB: For real though Why?

BM: I'm more dynamic. Not only can I return for you, I can cover (kicks), I can come out the backfield on third down. I can run the football. I can play more positions.

BB: Cooley was being slightly humble by saying he probably wouldn't help as more than a third tight end. Are you saying you can be more than the third or fourth running back?

BM: Ummm, for one game can I be more than the third or fourth running back? Hell yeah. I can come out the backfield. I can block my [butt] off. Halfback pass. I will field the punts which most guys can't even do. Kick returns, that's easy. Just stand in the end zone and catch is all you need to do. ...If I come back for one game, Jerry Rice won't be the leading all-purpose yardage guy.

BB: So you ever think about it?

BM: No (laughs). As long as I don't do it, then nobody knows if I could or not.

BB: Ok, on to the 2015 Redskins and the quarterbacks. I don't mind if Robert Griffin III ended up the starter, but wish they'd stuck with the idea of opening the competition. If you take away the investment in him, I'm not sure he's done enough to say he's the starter and that's it.

BM: It seems to me that the decision is being made based on what they gave up and the way he was drafted rather than because he's played better. When you say there is going to be an open competition and then you come back and say this guy is going to be the starter, it leads to a lot of doubt. It makes people question why. They have enough turmoil around them and conflict. Why keep adding to it.

BB: Best guess. Is RGIII the quarterback of this team in 2016?

BM: I couldn't tell you. The reason I say it like that is I've heard a lot of talk about what's going on this offseason, how great he's been. In mini-camp, I didn't see what they were telling me. I hear a lot of reporters say he's this, he's that. My football eye is different than most people. I haven't seen it. I'll find out when people are rushing him. You have to make decisions in sequence, in a certain time limit, not when you can drop back in 7-on-7 and tuck the ball in your arm and run. That tells me nothing. Is everybody covered? I don't know if you didn't read the right guy or if the pressure got to you. Is everybody covered? Sometimes they look covered, but you can throw.

BB: Clearly you're a competitor. I doubt coaches had to give you much motivation. So, Kirk Cousins. I'm sure he's a competitor, but he also seems like a such nice guy. Do you think he might perform differently if the team did open up the job?

BM: If (Kirk) has to have a certain situation for him to show his competitive juices, then he isn't the guy. But I do think Kirk is competitive guy. He's nice. He has that way about himself. But I watched this guy play in college and I've seen him get on the football field. The thing that happened to him last year, some guys get into (trouble) when they make a mistake and can't forget it. They try to make you forget it real quick and they force things. If he can just go out there and perform and not just try to erase stuff in one play, he's a good guy. I think he's very competitive."

BB: Non-quarterback question. Everybody has their favorites, their sleepers. Who is the guy on this team that's your guy?

BM: Bashaud Breeland. I just absolutely like the way the guy plays. The guy came in last year and was thrown into the fray. He played with confidence and aggression. Joe Gibbs said some players played with 'athletic arrogance' and (Breeland) played with that. He believes he belongs. He believes 'I belong' and he believes he's good and he performs like that.

Up next: Adding Junior Galette now and when the Redskins added Deion Sanders.


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