Redskins Sending Mixed Signals Regarding Haskins’ Starting Role
Is Dwayne Haskins the presumptive starting quarterback for the Washington Redskins? According to senior vice president of player development Doug Williams, yes, he is. According to head coach Ron Rivera, not yet.
Any time there’s a coaching change in the early stages of an unproven quarterback’s career, there will be questions about the team’s plans for that player. Those questions grow in volume when that same team holds the second overall pick in the draft, as Washington does.
After being selected 15th overall in the 2019 NFL draft, it appears Haskins has the blessing of the Redskins front office.
“The new staff knows that Dwayne Haskins is the starting quarterback here,” Williams said. “The only thing that can happen is for Dwayne to give it back to them.”
Rivera, however, has said he’ll take his time in naming the starting quarterback, and that Haskins will have to prove himself as the team’s starter.
“I’m going to have to work hard and eventually take it over,” Haskins said. “Just do your best to be accountable for what you have to do and be ready to go.”
According to reports, Haskins’ role was a significant part of Rivera’s interview with owner Dan Snyder before landing the job. But while Haskins is expected to be given a shot as a starter, it’s worth remembering that he wasn’t selected under Rivera’s tenure.
Haskins Closed Season With His Best Football
We could be having a very different discussion if Haskins didn’t finish the 2019 season with some of his best football of the year.
Haskins began his NFL career with a 107-yard, three-interception performance against the Giants at the end of September. His next appearance came towards the end of October when he tossed another pick without any TD passes against Minnesota.
Comeback In His Final Games Of The Season
After a rough start to his rookie campaign, Haskins was able to turn his season around in the final month of the season.
In the last two games of the year, Haskins threw for a combined 394 yards, four touchdowns, and zero interceptions. He earned a quarterback rating of 121.3 and 143.2 against the Eagles and Giants, respectively, in those contests.
And while the Redskins organization appeared to be split on Haskins entering the 2019 season under coach Jay Gruden, the changes they’ve made since that time have paved the way for the Haskins era in Washington.
How Long Will Rivera’s Patience Last?
While Haskins can be happy to have the support of Snyder and the Redskins front office, his biggest obstacle will likely be playing on one of the weakest rosters in the NFL in 2020.
According to early odds, Washington is tied with the Bengals and Dolphins at +15000 regarding odds of winning next year’s Super Bowl. After a 3-13 season that concluded in a last-place finish within the NFC East, those odds are no surprise.
The big question now becomes, how long Rivera will tolerate losing football?
Haskins will already be at the disadvantage of not having a proven supporting cast around him. If he isn’t able to make a huge leap forward in his sophomore campaign and the team struggles once again, how long will Rivera go before making a change at QB?