Count me as one who has been in Dwayne Haskins corner since even long before the Redskins drafted the former Buckeye signal caller in April’s draft. The poise, stature, intelligence, arm talent and deceptive mobility all fit well in today’s NFL, and I became a huge fan about half way through Ohio State’s 2018 season after I realized this kid was no fluke.
Fast forward six months...
The Haskins critics have been everywhere. They were quietly apprehensive as the Redskins started the season with veteran journeyman Case Keenum at the helm. They were vocal when he was uncharacteristically inserted into the game against the Giants (despite VERY limited practice with the starters that week) and threw three interceptions. Their displeasure grew louder as reports came out of Redskins Park that the rookie was nowhere near ready to take hold of the starting quarterback position (something most of us already knew when he was drafted). They reached a peak when Dwayne came in against the Vikings and missed a wide open Terry McLaurin in the middle of the field resulting in an interception.
Despite some struggles in limited game action, Haskins will get his first ever NFL start today against the Buffalo Bills on the road. This will be the first time all year he’s prepared during the week as a starter.
If the Redskins and offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell are smart, they will tailor a game plan around what Haskins does well, and not try to pile too much of a very complicated play book on his plate.
This start, however, will not be an easy task for the rookie. Buffalo’s defense ranks third in the NFL in yards allowed per game at just 304. Opponents are converting just 37% of third downs this year, and they are holding opponents to just 17 points per contest.
I do feel that Haskins has an opportunity to thrive this afternoon, however, as this is the first time all season he’s been working exclusively with the first offense - which has seen significant action against the Redskins first team defense in practice.
Dwayne Haskins game predictions:
22-37 248 yards 2 TD’s 1 INT 2 sacks; 5 rushes for 37 yards
I think the Redskins keep this game close in a tough environment, but end up losing 24-20 in what many will look back on and consider a pretty well played football game.
How do you think the rookie will do in his first NFL start? Let us know your predictions in the comment section.