By turning to Dwayne Haskins before the Bills game, the Redskins signaled their commitment to positioning themselves for a better future as opposed to trying to succeed in the present.
And in their loss to the Jets, Washington made additional in-game changes that showed they're interested in evaluating other younger players on their roster. Nothing was as major as switching QBs, but the adjustments versus New York were still eye-catching.
So, as the Burgundy and Gold continues to shift its focus way down the road as opposed to what's coming up at the next intersection, who will see their playing time increase?
Here are three lesser-known Redskins that stand to see more action in these final six contests.
Much has been made about the connection between Haskins and Terry McLaurin, but Haskins and Harmon seem to be building a solid understanding of each other, too.
Against the Jets in Week 11, the sixth-round wideout brought in a career-high five balls for 53 yards. Before that matchup, Harmon had just eight catches in eight appearances.
"He brings a physical presence to the receiver position," Haskins said of Harmon on Wednesday. "Kelvin does a great job high-pointing the ball, does a great job being physical at the catch point."
Part of Harmon's increased production certainly had to do with Paul Richardson being out, and when Richardson returns, he may see fewer targets. However, the two rookies have actually known each other well before getting to the NFL, and as Haskins explained, Harmon's physicality is something that the other pass-catchers can't match.
In McLaurin, Washington knows it has one tremendous playmaker to count on for years. Let's see if Harmon can continue to push for snaps and looks as he aims to demonstrate he can be a legit option as well.
Donald Penn is a 36-year-old who was brought in during training camp to help the Redskins survive without Trent Williams. He's performed better than many expected, but he's clearly not someone who's long for the franchise.
In fact, this past Sunday, Bill Callahan opted to pull Penn in favor of Christian in the second half on a couple of series.
"We're going to continue to mix and match our personnel," the interim coach told the media Monday.
Now, the team has to walk a delicate line when it comes to Penn and Christian at left tackle. It needs to start figuring out what Christian can be in this league — is there starter potential, or is he just a rotational guy? — because he's a former third-round pick they haven't used much to this point. That said, the Redskins do have a first-round signal caller they need to protect as best they can.
As long as Christian isn't a giant liability, though, the coaches may and probably should opt to keep giving him more and more chances. Either he's promising or he's disappointing, but regardless, it's time to get an answer.
Penn wasn't the only one who was subbed out at FedEx Field in Week 11. Callahan also put corners like Josh Norman and Fabian Moreau on the bench to give others a "chance to get some exposure on film." If Callahan is willing to remain flexible at that spot, Moreland will benefit.
Out of Harmon, Christian and Moreland, Moreland has by far seen the most snaps in 2019. Unfortunately, the offseason hype that surrounded him hasn't carried over to the regular season, as he's yet to intercept a pass and has had some crucial errors in coverage.
But hey, you know who else has had some crucial errors in coverage? More experienced corners than Moreland on the defense, such as Norman and Moreau. And with all signs pointing to Norman not returning in 2020 and Moreau potentially sliding down the depth chart, why not turn to Moreland even more and see if he can develop?
It's easy for fans to say money or draft status shouldn't factor in to who plays and who doesn't, but those things do often matter. Yet, in a season as dreadful as this one and when the record is as awful as it is, those variables should weigh less, meaning Moreland should see the field more.
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