The first time Dwayne Haskins stepped onto an NFL field for regular season action was against the New York Giants back in Week 4. He's now set to face them again this Sunday, and even though that game was less than three months ago, he barely recognizes himself when rewatching footage from the matchup.
In fact, doing so makes him nauseous.
"I throw up watching that film," Haskins said on Wednesday. "I don't like watching that tape. That's a totally different guy."
Haskins made his debut in New York because Case Keenum had major issues running the offense at MetLife stadium, partly due to a foot injury he was dealing with. So, Jay Gruden — remember him? — decided to insert Haskins into the lineup late in the first half in an effort to provide life to the unit.
The rookie fared well on his first drive, helping lead the group to a field goal. That would be the only points the Burgundy and Gold picked up that day, though, and Haskins would finish 9-of-17 for 107 yards and three unsightly interceptions.
Haskins later explained why reviewing his play from that late September meeting bothers him so much.
"It's just I'm a whole different player than I was back then, and that's just something that I feel watching that tape is not me and it wasn't me out there," Haskins said. "You want to look at it and be like, 'That's what I messed up on,' and move on from it. I don't mind watching it. I just prefer to watch something else."
Since that loss, Haskins has played in relief once more in Minnesota and made six starts. That wouldn't be a lot of football for many signal callers, but for a rookie like Haskins who didn't have much time in college, it's a huge stretch full of learning experiences and growth.
"I think he's doing a terrific job," Giants head coach Pat Shurmur told local reporters. "I think he's doing a nice job delivering the ball quickly. We knew when he came out he was a very talented, very accomplished player. And I think he's making good progress."
The progress Shurmur's referring to was especially evident at FedEx Field last Sunday for Week 15, where Haskins went 19-of-28 for 261 yards and two touchdowns. That production added up to a rating of 121. 3 — or nearly 90 points higher than the 32.8 he posted versus the Giants in Week 4.
Now, Haskins has a chance to take on New York once more and prove to that defense he really is as "different" as he believes. Perhaps the Giants will be the ones who get sick from watching the film this time around.
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