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One thing QB coach Ken Zampese hopes Dwayne Haskins picked up while working out with Cam Newton

One thing QB coach Ken Zampese hopes Dwayne Haskins picked up while working out with Cam Newton

Dwayne Haskins has had quite the offseason. Despite the pandemic-altered summer months, the rising second-year passer has spent the bulk of his time since March training with numerous stars across the NFL.

Earlier this month, Haskins and his camp traveled to Los Angeles to work out with two Pro Bowl quarterbacks: Cam Newton and Deshaun Watson. By working out with those two passers, Haskins had the chance to learn from two proven quarterbacks: Newton won league MVP in 2015, while Watson remains one of the best young signal-callers in the game.

When Washington QB coach Ken Zampese found out that Haskins was working out with Newton, he was thrilled. However, Zampese quickly fired off a text message to the 23-year-old with a simple request.

"I saw that picture and I told [Haskins] to ask [Newton] anything he wants to know about the offense," Zampese said in a Zoom call with local media Thursday.

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There is plenty that Haskins can learn from Newton. The Patriots passer (wow, that still sounds weird) had spent the entirety of his career up to this point under new Washington head coach Ron Rivera. Additionally, Newton directly worked with current Washington offensive coordinator Scott Turner, who was the QB coach in Carolina, the past two seasons.

So, if there's anyone that knows what Turner and Rivera are trying to accomplish on offense, it's Newton.  

"[Haskins] said he was already on it. He was really excited about the response," Zampese said. "I know he was, and I am glad he was working out with Cam."

As Haskins enters his second season in the NFL, he's also been tasked with learning his second offensive system. If you include his time at Ohio State, this is the third year in a row that he's played in a different offensive scheme.

When Haskins arrived in Washington as a rookie, much of his reported struggles early on had to do with the mental aspect of the position, not his physical talent. Learning the playbook and the terminology wasn't exactly easy for the passer (to be fair, many rookies struggle with this every year).

This is where Newton comes into play. Haskins enters training camp in a "competition" with Kyle Allen for Washington's starting role. Haskins is undoubtedly the more gifted passer. But where Allen has a slight advantage over Haskins is he's already familiar with the offense Turner wants to run, having played under him in Carolina last season.

So, while Haskins was in LA learning from Newton on the field, Zampese also hopes that Cam was able to pass along some tips about learning that terminology and language of Turner's offense.

"I loved it when he was working with Cam because Cam has had to speak this language for years," Zampese said. "Hopefully there was some transfer of shortcuts or different things. Like I know it is like this, but it is really like this. Hopefully there have been some shortcuts."

When asked what he would like to see the most out of Haskins during camp, Zampese once again emphasized the mental aspect of the position.

"The memorization of the playbook, speaking of the language fluently is certainly like learning a foreign language and being able to study the reads and know them inside and out," Zampese said. "That is the part that is the toughest. That is the newest. It is easy to drop back five steps and throw to an out route, everybody does that in every offense. Those physical things I think will be easier to pick up."

RELATED: HASKINS' RESPONSE TO CRITICS: 'WATCH ME WORK'

Real, padded practices still don't begin for a couple of weeks, but the QB coach is already looking forward to seeing the progress Haskins has made with the mental part of playing quarterback in the NFL.

"I can't wait to hear him speak and fix things and see those wheels turning faster and faster when we get out there," Zampese said.

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Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury admits his iconic draft photo was staged

Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury admits his iconic draft photo was staged

Of all the moments that arose from the one-of-a-kind 2020 NFL Draft, the view inside Kliff Kingsbury’s house was easily the most memorable.

The Arizona Cardinals' head coach was pictured on draft night in an iconic photo at his insanely beautiful house, which quickly went viral. However, in a pre-camp interview on Wednesday, Kingsbury admitted that the photo was indeed staged.

"Going into it I knew I was going to be super extra in the picture," Kingsbury said. "I do think the fire –– it was 100 degrees and sunny –– was a bit much, but I laid four phones on the table because the NFL gave us a couple...all the screens, I just wanted to make it as extra as possible and it turned out good. It made for fun."

The photo featured Kingsbury lounging on his couch during the draft with four cell phones, a laptop and two computer screens on the table in front of him, which he later claimed he had “just in case” something went technologically wrong. The viral picture also showed a view of the coach’s backyard with a huge outdoor kitchen, firepit in the middle and stunning view of the mountains in the background.

While the photo was staged, his house is completely real. Kingsbury purchased the 7,000 square-foot house in Paradise Valley, Ariz. for $4.45 million in 2019 after joining the Cardinals. 

If he ever has to take part in a virtual draft again, Kingsbury has ideas for the next go-around. 

"The NFL only allowed us to have one person at the house or I might've had some people on the float swans in the back, or a DJ, really doing it big. There's always next year, hopefully."

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Twitter goes crazy for Washington Football Team's new helmet decals

Twitter goes crazy for Washington Football Team's new helmet decals

The Washington Football team on Wednesday released an up close and personal look of all angles of their new helmets set to debut this season, and let’s just say they received the stamp of approval by many.

We’re not the only ones that stan a classic, crisp, clean look of the burgundy and gold. Big time D.C. sports fan and rapper Wale retweeted the reveal with the caption “We love to see”, confirmation that the award-winning singer is on board with the new vision. Dale Earnhardt Jr. also kept his reaction short and sweet with a GIF, followed by a “they look amazing” tweet.

On the other hand, Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio reacted by providing us with some bold predictions for the upcoming season. Ready for these hot takes? Florio’s first prediction is that “if Washington makes the playoffs in 2020, they'll remain the 'Washington Football Team' for at least two more years.” His second prediction reads “if they somehow make it to the Super Bowl (stranger things have happened), 'Washington Football Team' will become the new name.”

We don’t plan on ruling out any possibilities, but just know we have this one bookmarked. 

 

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