Washington Football

Washington Football

This week, JP Finlay and Pete Hailey will be handing out Redskins Superlatives as they continue to preview the 2020 season.

Next up: They give their Most Improved Award to two very important members of the roster.

Pete's pick: Landon Collins

Landon Collins was in the "fine to good" range in his first year with the Redskins. Problem is, Washington is paying Collins to be in the "excellent to best in the league" range.

In 2019, Collins suited up for 15 out of 16 contests, but the safety didn't notch a single interception, didn't consistently create havoc near the line of scrimmage and acted as the leader of a secondary that had coverage mishap after coverage mishap. 

Now, was all of that Collins' fault? Of course not. His partner at safety, Montae Nicholson, didn't do much to help, corners next to him such as Josh Norman and Jimmy Moreland were beat far too often and the rest of the players in front of him didn't exactly star, either.

But again, when Collins signed a contract with $45 million guaranteed on it last March, he also signed up for a lot of responsibility and expectations. Unfortunately, he didn't come through for the Burgundy and Gold.

There's still plenty of time for him to deliver, however, and reason to expect that he will in 2020.

Collins won't be the new guy anymore. Collins also won't be playing for Greg Manusky anymore; instead, he'll be lining up for Jack Del Rio, whom the 26-year-old already respects greatly. He has a new teammate at safety in Sean Davis, who appears to have a skill set that complements his. And here's the last point: He's still Landon Collins.

 

For all those reasons, look for the former All-Pro to truly impact the Redskins this season. Maybe he'll never fully meet the lofty numbers on his six-year deal, but he certainly can come close and be a lot better for the organization than he was in his debut last fall and winter. He's simply too proven not to be.

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JP's pick: Dwayne Haskins

Everybody knows how bad Dwayne Haskins looked in his first two NFL appearances last year, but the truth is the rookie probably shouldn't have even been on the field in those spots. Remove the awful stats from those games against the Giants and Vikings, and then all of a sudden his rookie numbers don't look so bad. 

He finished the year with seven touchdowns against seven interceptions. Well, three of those INTs came in Week 4 against the Giants when Haskins came on in relief for an injured Case Keenum. Another pick came in a Thursday night loss to the Vikings in Week 8 when, again, Haskins came in off the bench after Keenum got injured. Overall, his completion percentage in those relief appearances registered at less than 57 percent. 

Ugly. 

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Balance that with what Haskins looked like late in the year. In his final two starts for the Redskins he completed more than 70-percent of his passes with four touchdowns and no interceptions. 

That's significant improvement just over the course of his rookie season, and that was in the middle of dealing with a fired coach and a losing team. If he can improve in that situation, imagine what a real offseason will bring.

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