Washington releases Dwayne Haskins following a crucial loss to Carolina
The Dwayne Haskins era in Washington has officially come to an end. Head coach Rivera told Haskins Monday morning, “it benefits both parties that [they] go their separate ways.” Haskins was taken 15th overall in the 2019 draft out of Ohio State. Now, 2020 hasn’t even ended yet Haskins is no longer on the Washington Football Team.
A rough week for Haskins which he described as “the hardest week of my life”, ended in his release from the team. Haskins, earlier last week, was exposed via an instagram story in a photo where he appeared to be maskless at some sort of venue.
The second year signal caller told the media he was at a private event for his girlfriend, which remains unclear if that was really the case. This was Haskins’ second time violating Covid rules this season. Rivera stripped Haskins of his captaincy and was fined $40,000 by the team.
Although Haskins was under a ton of heat, he was still set to start a pivotal game vs. Carolina with the division on the line. This was only in the event that Alex Smith was still sidelined with his calf injury. When asked if he saw this as his last chance here in Washington, Haskins replied, “Yeah.”
Game time approached quickly and it was decided on Sunday morning Smith was not going to be able to play. Haskins final opportunity in Washington was now set with a chance to clinch the NFC East with a victory.
In the biggest game of the season and his young career, Haskins was unable to rise to the occasion. Haskins started off the first possessions not completing a single pass on five attempts. One drive later, Washington’s offense was able to march into Carolina territory thanks to a couple powerful runs by Antonio Gibson who returned this week. The drive was halted as Haskins was hit as he threw which was ruled a fumble and turnover by the officials. The play was reviewed and upheld as a turnover for Haskins.
Haskins poor play continued throughout the first half where he tossed two interceptions and finished the half with an abysmal 8.3 passer rating. Washington trailed 20-3 at the half in the most important game of their season. Many Washington fans were calling for Haskins to be benched for the second half. Unfortunately, Haskins remained the quarterback to start the second half.
It became apparent that Rivera hadn’t gone to the bullpen soon enough as Haskins continued to look incompetent as a quarterback during the third quarter of the game. It wasn’t until the middle of the fourth quarter when Haskins was pulled in favor of Taylor Heinicke.
Dejected, Haskins stood on the sideline the remainder of the game while Heinicke put together a few solid drives. Heinicke had a touchdown to Cam Sims called back due to a holding call. The next play, Washington couldn’t convert on fourth and long.
Washington showed some life at the end of the game when Heinicke continued to look solid, tossing a 29 yard touchdown to J.D Mckissic. Heinicke finished 12 of 19 passing with 137 yards. Sadly, Heinicke almost out performed Haskins in only three possessions. Haskins finished 14/28 with 154 yards and a 36.9 passer rating. A despicable performance from Haskins to say the least.
Washington failed to convert the onside kick which sealed the deal for the Panthers. Washington now falling to 6-9 still controls their own destiny in week 17. Washington must defeat Philadelphia on Sunday Night Football to punch a ticket to the postseason. Washington is hopeful Smith will be ready to go for that game. If not, Heinicke will start Sunday night.
After the game, Haskins chose to skip his live post game press conference and instead talk to the media from his home on Zoom. Haskins looked defeated and uncertain as he answered questions from reporters. When asked about his football future after the game Haskins responded, “That isn’t a question I can answer right now.”
Now that Haskins has been released, the focus for the Washington Football Team must be shifted into this must win game against the Eagles on Sunday.
Haskins played 16 games with the organization starting in 13 of those games. The young quarterback wasn’t able to put up enough convincing play to prove he would be the franchise quarterback here in Washington. Haskins now has a tough road ahead of him to somehow revive his NFL career somewhere else.