NFL veteran Robert Griffin III shared disturbing details in his upcoming memoir, where he talks about being the victim of sexual harassment during his time with the Washington Football Team. The quarterback posted a video on Twitter last week to give a glimpse of the allegations he detailed in his book, Surviving Washington.
“I’m going to tell you the truth about what happened in that playoff game in 2012 against Seattle,” he said. “I’m going to detail the medical mismanagement that I received during my time in Washington. I’m going to open your eyes to the sexual harassment that permeated the walls of that building, and give you a deep dive into a power struggle between one of the most powerful coaches in all of sports and an owner that many of you want gone.”
NEW BOOK ALERT!
The truth will set you free.
— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) November 30, 2021
Although the athlete recently announced the book, he refrained from disclosing details of sexual harassment. However, Emily Applegate, a former employee of the Washington Football Team, said she was disappointed with Griffin for trying to profit from the situation.
"Disappointed that you could have reached out to me directly to discuss the sexual harassment as we had a great working relationship and you witnessed some of the things I went through," Applegate wrote. "Seems like our stories are being used to make you money. Would love to chat further offline."
Disappointed that you could have reached out to me directly to discuss the sexual harassment as we had a great working relationship and you witnessed some of the things i went through. Seems like our stories are being used to make you money. Would love to chat further offline.
— EmilyApplegate (@emilyapplegatee) November 30, 2021
Griffin also defended himself against those who criticized him for teasing readers about the book instead of revealing the information as soon as possible.
"Sexual harassment victims should share their stories when they are ready, not when you want them to," he said. "The book is not about other people’s experiences with sexual harassment in Washington. It's about my experience with sexual harassment in Washington. Hopefully you will listen."
Sexual harassment victims should share their stories when they are ready not when you want them to. The book is not about other people’s experiences with sexual harassment in Washington. Its about my experience with sexual harassment in Washington. Hopefully you will listen. https://t.co/DCEnhFnaiW
— Robert Griffin III (@RGIII) December 1, 2021
"It was clear to anyone watching that night Griffin was seriously injured," the synopsis states. "However, he was cleared to reenter the game. Late in the fourth quarter, his knee finally buckled. The entire stadium attendance fell silent as Griffin was helped off the field. In less than a year, he had gone from franchise savior to fallen star."
The quarterback is now reflecting on the playoff game and the alleged toxic environment he experienced with the franchise. Griffin, according to the preview, witnessed "medical mismanagement and sexual harassment in the most dysfunctional organization in sports today, overseen by Daniel Snyder."
The 2011 Heisman Trophy winner was selected with the second overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft by the team formerly known as the Washington Redskins.
According to ESPN, the Washington Football Team has been under investigation after dozens of former employees raised allegations of workplace misconduct.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the league hasn't yet revealed the findings of the nearly year-long investigation because some who were interviewed wanted anonymity. However, representatives of the former employees are frustrated with the league's process. Lisa Banks and Debra Katz, who represent 40 women who made allegations of sexual harassment, expressed their frustration in a two-page letter to Goodell in October.
"While many who came forward feared retaliation by Dan Snyder, and therefore requested their names be kept confidential, they never envisioned that all their efforts and the efforts of Beth Wilkinson and her team would result in no written report of findings, and no real accountability for Dan Snyder or the WFT. Had they known this, they would not have participated," the letter stated.
Melanie Coburn, a former Washington cheerleader who was the team's marketing director from 2001 to 2011, revealed details of the sexual harassment allegations in an opinion piece for USA TODAY. Coburn pointed to videos produced by Larry Michael, the team’s former broadcaster and senior vice president.
"Michael and his team produced two videos featuring the naked bodies of WFT cheerleaders – filmed without their knowledge or consent – and one former employee said they were made specifically for Snyder," she wrote. "The soundtrack for the videos was a mashup of Snyder’s favorite songs."
The former cheerleader also said team attorneys reached out to her after she launched a petition on behalf of the employees.
"Six days after I launched the Change.org campaign, team attorneys verbally offered a group of us money to sign a nondisclosure agreement that would prohibit us from speaking publicly," Coburn wrote.