Did Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera tip his hand, revealing his true feelings about Dwayne Haskins on Sunday?
106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen points to one particular post-game comment Rivera made — after Washington's 31-17 loss to Baltimore — as a potential slip of the tongue, of the Freudian variety, as proof that Rivera could have a much lower bar for Haskins than previously believed.
The remark in question came as Rivera was addressing that failed fourth-and-long he said was a test for his young quarterback. With three receivers floating around the goal line, Haskins completed a five-yard dump off to Isaiah Wright at the 9-yard line.
"The ball's gotta go into the end zone or it's got to be put in position where it can get into the end zone," Rivera said Sunday. "It's something that he's gotta learn. If he's gonna be a starter in this league and contribute to winning football games, he has to understand and develop. This is part of it. This is part of the growth."
"Don't you think that's pretty telling about what Rivera thinks of Dwayne Haskins?" Paulsen said.
"In addition to testing him with this fourth down play, where he kind of outs him for not having passed the test," Paulsen went on to say, "he says 'if he's going to be a starter in this league.' He just admitted to you... Ron Rivera's not convinced Dwayne Haskins is a starter. Forget the ceiling, the upside... Do you draft a quarterback? Do you do this?"
"He's still trying to figure out if Dwayne Haskins is a starter!" Paulsen said. "Maybe you're thinking, okay, that's obvious, right? I'd say if that's obvious, then that's pretty crazy in Year 2 at this point. We're not saying good; we're saying a starter? There's 32 of those guys.
"You and I are having conversations over the last couple of weeks about, 'Is he gonna be a middle-of-the-pack guy, and can they win with him? And can he be the guy for the next seven, eight years?' Ron Rivera's having conversations about, 'Is he a starter?'"