Football Team

Jason Campbell says Haskins was 'definitely staring' down WRs

Football Team

When asked about his three interceptions in Washington's Week 3 34-20 loss to Cleveland on Sunday, quarterback Dwayne Haskins denied staring down his wide receivers and instead gave detailed descriptions of his progressions on the field. 

Jason Campbell, no stranger to the pressures that come with being a quarterback in Washington during his years with the team, saw things differently. 

"Yeah he was definitely staring the receivers down," Campbell said on NBC Sports Washington's Postgame Live show. "You're exactly right that he was starting down receivers and that's definitely something he has to get better at because once you start playing this position, people have a book on you."

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Campbell noted that just as Haskins said in his postgame availability, the Browns' defensive pass rush from Myles Garrett and company hurried Haskins into some wrong decisions. It was the kind of pressure that got to Haskins like this fourth-quarter strip-and-sack from Garrett that sealed the deal. 

But instead of giving reasons for his errors, Campbell said it's important for Haskins to ackowledge his short comings and move on. 

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"Be honest with yourself and say, 'Yes, I have to correct that aspect of it,' and that will help improve his game," said Campbell. 

When Haskins looks back at the film, he may rethink his answer denying staring down his wideouts. On all three interceptions, Haskins did not look away from his original target before the throw. 

 

"Dwayne was really hard on himself. As a quarterback in the National Football League, it's already hard enough when you're in a major city," said Campbell, who played QB for Washington himself from 2006-2009. "You have to just let water roll off your back when things aren't going right and move onto the next play. You can't let a play you just made, a turnover, affect your next drive. Your next drive needs to be in a positive direction."

Starting under center at age 25 for the Burgundy and Gold, Campbell stuck out the good days and the bad during an average era of football for Washington in the mid-2000s under Joe Gibbs' second stint with the team. Now as an analyst for NBC Sports Washington's postgame coverage, Campbell knows Haskins must put those mistakes behind him - like he did briefly in the second half.

"Even after the first two picks we saw him come out in the second half, drive down the field and they go down and score. He leads another drive, they go down and score," said Campbell. "Then, you throw that next pick and that next pick hurts with you just starting down the receiver and it changed the momentum because our defense was actually playing very high at that point. We had momentum when were up 20-17, and then it just starts to unravel because of that interception."

Though there will surely be more "growing pains" -- as head coach Ron Rivera said after Week 2 -- for Haskins and the inexperienced Washington offense, it's important that this kind of performance doesn't impact his confidence.

"He has got to be able to quickly put this game behind him," Campbell said. "Watch the film, learn from the mistakes, but don't be so hard that you can't get yourself back up."