Football Team

Rivera gives Fitzpatrick the edge in WFT's starting QB race

Football Team

After Taylor Heinicke outperformed Ryan Fitzpatrick in Washington's three-day minicamp, a collection of fans are beginning to wonder if the playoff star can actually overtake the cunning veteran and start for the team in Week 1.

Ron Rivera, however, doesn't seem to be seriously entertaining the idea — at least not yet.

In an interview with The Athletic, the head coach explained that Fitzpatrick still has the edge over Heinicke despite what transpired recently.

"Ryan has the job right now, and it’s his to have," Rivera told The Athletic's Ben Standig. "I’m not gonna say it's his to lose — I think that’s the wrong way to look at things. It’s his to have."

Rivera went on to imply that as long as Fitzpatrick shows in training camp the same type of things he's shown throughout his career, then he'll be the one leading the Burgundy and Gold's offense in the opener versus the Chargers.

That doesn't mean Fitzpatrick's challenger is completely out of the race, though.

"I’m not going to discount Taylor," he said. "The things that Taylor did last year, the momentum he built up as a player, you’ve got to give them equal opportunities and equal chance."

The next opportunities and chances the two passers will receive will come at training camp, which commences in late July.

In his first training camp with Washington, Rivera basically cleared the way for Dwayne Haskins to be the top signal caller, a process that he's since admitted he regrets. This time around, expect things to be more heated, even if he's stating that Fitzpatrick is the current favorite.

 

"Both Ryan and Taylor are two guys that are very vital, very important to us going forward," Rivera said. “So we’ll be watching both those guys and watching their progress very, very closely. I think it’s going to be a very competitive battle. I think both guys want to be the guy. That’s going to be important to us as we go forward."

So, as the summer drags on and there's not much happening in the Washington Football Team world, do your best to remember these remarks when a Fitzpatrick vs. Heinicke conversation develops. Fitzpatrick still has the lead, as he should, and that won't change until camp kicks off in Richmond.