Actions speak louder than words, but this week, the Redskins both spoke and acted in ways to make it very obvious that Dwayne Haskins will be the starting quarterback this fall.
First came the actions, namely when Washington sent a fifth-round pick to Carolina for QB Kyle Allen. He's got talent and knows offensive coordinator Scott Turner's system, though while Allen should push Haskins to be better, Allen shouldn't push Haskins out of the starting spot. Once that trade became official, it took the Redskins out of the running for Cam Newton or any other veteran passer that would have bumped Haskins down the depth chart.
If the action wasn't enough, Redskins head coach Ron Rivera went on Charlotte radio station WFNZ to talk about the Allen trade. Asked if that makes Haskins the Redskins starting QB, Rivera responded, "We’re going into camp believing that, but they’re going to be competing."
That settles it.
The coach is going to training camp believing Haskins is the starter, and in a coronavirus world where OTAs and minicamp and any other team gathering seems far-fetched until training camp, that belief is about all that matters.
So what does that mean for the Redskins draft strategy, particularly with the No. 2 overall pick?
It means it's overwhelmingly likely the Redskins will select Ohio State defensive end Chase Young.
Rivera openly talking about his belief in Haskins, and trading for Allen, means the Redskins are no longer even putting up the facade of taking a quarterback with the second overall pick. And without that facade, it's unlikely any team will feel the need to trade up with Washington to grab its QB of the future.
In some ways, coronavirus might have changed the Redskins draft strategy.
At the NFL Scouting Combine in February, Rivera explained that the Redskins would host Joe Burrow and Tua Tagovailoa for official visits. That turned the NFL world into a tizzy; why would the Redskins bring in Tua after drafting Haskins last year? Would Washington actually pursue the same franchise altering strategy that Arizona went with last year, taking first-round QBs in consecutive drafts?
The answer was always probably not, but now that NFL teams can't host official visits and there is no sense in trying to create a buzz about the possibility of Tua in D.C., the Redskins can just go down the road many expected anyway.
Draft Chase Young. Be happy with his immense potential. And start Dwayne Haskins at quarterback.
It's simple really. It was likely always the plan, and now it looks like almost a certainty.
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