Although Dwayne Haskins has flashed mixed results through the first two weeks of the NFL season, competently managing Washington to a Week 1 victory only to completely come undone in a Week 2 loss, one Pro Football Focus says he's seen enough.
"I think if the Washington Football Team is in a position to grab one of these big three quarterbacks in 2021, regardless of how this season ends — so that being Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields or Trey Lance from North Dakota St. — I think they're gonna have to pull the trigger," Austin Gayle, Associate Director of Content for PFF told The Sports Junkies on Tuesday. "I think the Dwayne Haskins experiment, unless massive things change through the rest of this year, is going to end in Washington."
"Wow," Junkies host Eric Bickel reacted. "Wow."
Gayle identifies Haskins' inaccuracy through his first 11 NFL games as too insurmountable to be overcome. Since arriving in the league as the 15th overall pick in 2019, Haskins has completed 58.1 percent of his passes, and that's even dipped slightly, to 56.3 percent through his first two starts in 2020.
"Dwayne Haskins is right now up there with the least accurate quarterback in the NFL," said Gayle. "The only one who is more inaccurate than him through two weeks is Carson Wentz. Both of those quarterbacks have really struggled to put the ball downfield with accuracy. The offensive line is also not great."
"I'm really impressed with what the Washington Football Team has done from a defensive standpoint," he said. "But their Achilles' heel is the quarterback position, and any team with that Achilles' heel — unless you have a superstar loaded roster — is going to struggle to put up points and win games consistently. I'm concerned with Dwayne Haskins."
Junkies host John-Paul Flaim questioned why Gayle is ready to make the call on Haskins so early, especially considering the Washington passer, outside of Terry McLaurin, has a dearth of weapons on offense.
"The problem for me, and the reason why I'm willing to call it, is looking at last year and through two games this year, he is up there with the least accurate quarterback in the NFL. We have yet to see quarterbacks that aren't accurate with the football progress significantly," said Gayle.
"Even Josh Allen, as well as he's playing right now, has not improved significantly from an accuracy standpoint," he continued. "Same with Lamar Jackson. One of the more inaccurate quarterbacks coming out of Louisville, and still hasn't jumped to Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Derek Carr levels. I don't see Dwayne Haskins being a top-15 quarterback from an accuracy perspective, and for that reason, he doesn't have the arm talent, the moxie, the running ability to overcome that."
"And I think when you have a quarterback that isn't the quarterback, but just a quarterback, it's that much harder to build around him with supporting casts," Gayle said. "Because you know what the Washington Football Team has to do to win football games with Dwayne Haskins?
"They're gonna have to pay Terry McLaurin, they're gonna have to bring in stud offensive linemen that cost a ton of money, continue to add to that defense, because he can't do it by himself. I'm not convinced he's a quarterback that elevates the talent of the supporting cast, but rather leans on it, and those quarterbacks don't last long in the NFL."
Gayle was asked whether he thinks Ron Rivera will give Haskins a full 16-game audition, or pull the plug at some point and put Kyle Allen in.
"You know, you asked me that question two weeks ago and I think absolutely," Gaye answered. "I mean they have no other reason not to. This team's gonna be bad. You might as well ride out this experiment however it may be."
"But now, they're playing in an NFC East that's kind of up in the air," he said. "I mean, they're 1-1 through two weeks. If they're in a position where Dwayne Haskins is the obvious problem, but they're still grinding out wins with good defense and some explosive plays from Terry McLaurin, they could be in a position Week 10, Week 11 to pull the plug and try and chase a playoff berth, if they are in a division that allows for it.
"However, I think if the Football Team continues to go down the drain and they're maybe out of playoff chances by Week 10, Week 11, you let him finish the season, really see what you have in Dwayne Haskins, and, honestly, lose as many games as possible so you can move on if you need to."