Earlier this offseason, Redskins twitter started to blow up when a video surfaced of second-year passer Dwayne Haskins working out with free-agent wide receiver Antonio Brown.
Speculation grew heavy, as many fans took to Twitter to plead for Washington to sign the talented but troubled pass-catcher.
Sorry, Redskins fans. Brown is almost certainly not joining the Redskins, as head coach Ron Rivera used a 415-word non-answer to confirm such on Wednesday.
While Brown may not be suiting up for the Burgundy and Gold come the fall, Haskins believes he can take some of the things he learned from working out with the Pro Bowl wideout back to the Redskins. In addition to Brown, the Redskins passer has worked out with multiple other receivers, such as Buffalo's Stefon Diggs, Miami's DeVante Parker and even retired pass-catcher Chad Johnson.
"Even with AB, Diggs, Chad, a whole bunch of other NFL players, DeVante Parker, I work out with a lot of receivers, they like to run routes with me," Haskins said. "The biggest thing with those guys is just, trying to be around the best, learning from the best, find ways to get better."
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Haskins specifically mentioned the time he spent working with Johnson, as the quarterback learned a lot from 'Ochocinco' during their short time together.
"Chad Johnson put me on game to a lot of stuff that I knew, but just to hear it from his perspective, somebody that’s played, played with [former QB] Carson Palmer, had success in the NFL," Haskins said. "We try to learn from those guys. Whenever I have the opportunity to be around those type of NFL players, who have produced, who are great guys on and off the field, I feel like it’s a good opportunity for me. Especially as a guy that’s trying to learn."
While the second-year passer has spent time working out with some of the game's better receivers, Haskins has also spent quality time throwing to a trio of his young Redskins wideouts: Terry McLaurin, Steven Sims and Kelvin Harmon.
Haskins mentioned multiple times on Wednesday how impressed he's been with all three of his pass-catchers.
"I mean, going through the young guys, Kelvin is in great shape, he’s running like I’ve never seen him before," Haskins said. "Steven looks great."
And for McLaurin?
"It’s the best I’ve seen Terry and I’ve known Terry since I was a freshman in college," Haskins said.
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This spring was expected to be a crucial developmental period for the quarterback, but the coronavirus pandemic effectively limited all in-person team activities. The players have been able to stay in contact through a virtual program, but nothing can replicate work done on the field.
So, when Haskins and his pass-catchers have had a chance to work out together in-person, they've used that time to work on little things communication-wise that cannot be done via Zoom or any other virtual format.
"It’s just the small talks that you don’t necessarily get all the time in a Zoom meeting that you get on the field," Haskins said. "Just working the different looks that you can get in the game or in training camp because we don’t have that right now because of this coronavirus. So, being able to apply those situations to a workout, helps tremendously."
Haskins, someone who is hoping to emerge as the face of the franchise in 2020, has been doing all the right things this offseason. He's narrowed his focus on what's important to him and completely transformed his body, too. Rivera has noticed Haskins' commitment this offseason and even praised the passer when speaking to the media on Wednesday.
It's too early to tell whether 2020 will be a successful year for Haskins, but the quarterback is controlling everything he can in order to have a successful second season in the NFL.
"I just wanted to be a man about my business and that’s on and off the field," Haskins said. "Not that I wasn’t prior too, but now turning 23, still being young and growing, whenever there were questions about immaturity or lack of whatever it was, I was going to change that whether it was true or not just for myself because I needed to do that for me. I applied pressure with everything I did this offseason with my body and how I studied and it’s making a big difference."
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