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Robert Griffin III thinks Caleb Williams should tell Bears he won't play for them: 'Pull an Eli Manning'

The Chicago Bears made a clear path to draft Caleb Williams first overall and make him their starting quarterback, but Robert Griffin III thinks he should hold out.

A clear path has finally been set for Caleb Williams, the favorite to land with the Chicago Bears, after GM Ryan Poles traded Justin Fields to the Pittsburgh Steelers over the weekend. 

But one former high draft pick believes Williams should consider holding out on them and pulling an "Eli Manning" when the 2024 NFL Draft comes up next month. 

Robert Griffin III thinks Williams should do what Manning did ahead of the 2004 NFL Draft, when he told the San Diego Chargers he wouldn’t sign with them, which ultimately led to a trade with the New York Giants. 

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Even though the foundation has been laid for Williams, especially with Poles trading for Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen and signing running back D’Andre Swift to add more playmakers on offense, Griffin explained his reasoning.

"After everything that’s happened with just Justin Fields, can Caleb Williams really look at that and say, ‘You know what? This is the organization that has my best interests at heart, and they’re going to help develop me into the player I want to become,’" Griffin said in a video posted to his X account. 

"Caleb Williams is on record saying that he wants to be legendary, he wants to rewrite history, and he wants to be the best he can possibly be and win the most games he can possibly win."

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Of course, there’s no guarantee that the additions Poles made to the team, including a potential pick of Williams, will lead to a quick turnaround for the Bears. However, teams that do pick at the top of the NFL Draft are usually in the rebuilding stages. 

Poles and the rest of the Bears’ organization felt they needed a reset at quarterback. Fields played three seasons with the team, but he owns just a 10-28 record as a starter. The team’s struggles can’t be pinned on Fields, though, as the roster had holes all over on both sides of the ball. 

Chicago, seeing a chance to change their fortunes, especially with a rookie quarterback contract at first overall, makes a lot of sense for the organization.

But Griffin feels otherwise, saying that Williams has the same power now that Manning had coming out of Ole Miss in 2004. 

"Don’t get me wrong. Hey, hand the football off to D’Andre Swift, throwing the ball to Keenan Allen and D.J. Moore and Cole Kmet — those guys are phenomenal. This ain’t anything about them. This is about Caleb Williams and what team out there gives him the best chance to be successful. Only he can deem that," Griffin explained.

Where does Griffin want to see Williams go instead of Chicago? The team he was taken by in 2012. 

"I do think him going back to Washington, where he’s from… I think that’s the best spot for him. But he has to answer that question.

"He does have power right now, and he should exercise it if he feels like Chicago is not where he should be."

Williams has been considered by many to be a generational talent, and that’s usually someone teams don’t want to pass on. Other top quarterbacks in the draft include Jayden Daniels, Drake Maye and J.J. McCarthy, but Williams has been projected to go first overall over all of them. 

The pathway has been cleared to do so, but there’s still over a month until the Bears can make that official. 

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