Ron Rivera is not ready to give up on recently benched quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The Washington Football Team head coach reiterated the notion Wednesday while talking to media, saying he has “not quit” on the 23-year old.
Haskins is dealing with an illness that forced him out of last week’s loss to the Los Angeles Rams and has held him out of practice Wednesday and Thursday. This is all after he was benched from starter to third string last week.
Rumors and speculation have surfaced of Haskins being potentially traded before this year’s trade deadline. However, according to Sam Fortier of the Washington Post, Rivera is not interested in trading Haskins and there is a “possibility” he could play again for Washington this season.
According to two people with knowledge of the situation, Rivera is not interested in trading Haskins at this point and hopes to continue developing the quarterback with the possibility of him returning to play later this year or next.
When asked about trade rumors surrounding Haskins, Rivera said, “I don’t want to talk about the hypotheticals” but that his hope is Haskins will continue to develop and grow in Washington.
“This is an opportunity for him to learn and grow and develop,” Rivera said of Haskins. “I have not quit on the kid as far as his development.”
According to ESPN’s John Keim, no team has contacted Washington about Haskins and Haskins has not made a trade request.
And my understanding is that he has not requested a trade.— John Keim (@john_keim) October 14, 2020
Rivera has contended Haskins’ benching was in large due to Washington’s current standing in the NFC East. Despite a 1-4 start, Washington is just one game behind the 2-3 Dallas Cowboys for first place in the division. That and the fact Haskins struggled through the first four games of the season.
At the time of the Haskins’ benching, Rivera said the next four games were crucial to Washington’s thinking for the remainder of the season. Washington lost the first game of the stretch against the Rams. However, the team has three manageable games up next with two against the winless New York Giants and one against the Cowboys.
This year was supposed to be a rebuild year, but the entire NFC East is struggling with no teams having a winning record. Rivera said he is looking for the “short-term glory” by starting the more seasoned Kyle Allen and moving Alex Smith to backup over Haskins.
Yet, if Washington continues to lose, fall behind in the standings, and Haskins uses his time as the No. 3 QB to continue his development, then there is a chance he could be starting once again for Washington this year.