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Washington will keep Robert Griffin III as backup, per report

Griffin will reportedly stay in Washington as a backup to Kirk Cousins.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Robert Griffin III will not be released by Washington and will instead stick on the team's roster as the backup to Kirk Cousinsaccording to Jeff Darlington of NFL.com.

By releasing Griffin, Washington could avoid paying the embattled quarterback more than $16 million in 2016, but the team will reportedly keep the No. 2 pick in the 2012 NFL Draft on the roster instead. If Griffin suffers an injury that causes him to fail a physical at the end of the season, Washington will be on the hook for the entire $16.155 million fifth-year option for Griffin regardless of whether the team keeps him.

According to Darlington, Griffin will be the second-string quarterback behind Cousins, but ahead of Colt McCoy on the depth chart. NFL Network's Albert Breer says that won't be the case in Week 1, though, and McCoy will instead be the second option behind Cousins while Washington still waits for Griffin to be cleared to return to action.

Please remember this is all subject to change.

Griffin first suffered a concussion on Aug. 20 in a preseason game against the Detroit Lions, and while he was cleared to return for the next game, the NFL's independent neurologist changed his mind and decided the quarterback wasn't ready to return. That neurologist has resigned from his position, but will still evaluate Griffin and work with the NFL's new neurologist to decide when the quarterback is cleared to return.

On Friday, Griffin was evaluated by the pair of neurologists, but his status to return hasn't yet been revealed. Washington can't make any decision regarding Griffin until he has been cleared, but for now, reports are that the team will keep the quarterback it invested so heavily in three years ago.