Competition or not, Haskins' success is 'the only thing that matters' now

Chris Lingebach
May 13, 2019 - 9:07 pm

Jay Gruden has declared an open competition at quarterback for the Washington Redskins in 2019. If first-round pick Dwayne Haskins wants to be the Week 1 starter, he'll have to earn it.

"We're gonna go at it. Throw the ball out there and let these guys compete, really," Gruden told reporters during rookie minicamp Saturday. "I think he obviously displayed enough of a skill set to warrant the 15th pick in the draft and to give him an opportunity to see how far he can take this thing, without a doubt."

"I've been impressed with obviously the other quarterbacks that we have here," he said. "Case has done an excellent job, the little bit that we've seen of him. And then Colt's obviously rehabbing. Josh (Woodrum) has done a good job as well. It's a good group and competition will be there."

Asked specifically if it's an 'open competition' at quarterback, Gruden replied, "Yeah, for sure. We have to have that. Yeah."

"I mean Case, obviously coming over with the most experience is great," he said. "Colt's got the most experience with this terminology and this system. And then obviously Dwayne, the 15th pick in the draft. We'll see what happens."

106.7 The Fan's Danny Rouhier, a lifelong Redskins fan, cares less about Gruden's phrasing and more about the end result with Haskins.

"I no longer care about what has to be sacrificed," he said Monday. "I no longer care about who falls by the wayside. I don't care what it costs you. You have now invested in a first-round quarterback. Him being successful is the only thing that matters.

"We need to look up five years from now – I guess it's less than that, so four and change – and say, 'Of course it's a no-brainer to give him that fifth-year option. Of course it's a no-brainer to sign him to a huge extension for a lot of money, because he's really good and we have our franchise quarterback.' That's the plan. That's the end of the road."

"At that time by the way, just forecasting out four offseasons from now, probably $150 million that you're giving him and you're guaranteeing him close to $100 million," Grant Paulsen noted.

"Yeah. It's gonna be an outrageous amount," Rouhier said. "I need that to be a no-brainer because he's great. You go, 'Of course you pay that.' You don't think twice about paying it."

"Now, that's the end of the road, okay? We don't have the Quantum Realm to zip through here with Ant-Man and company, so let's figure out the path to get there," he said. "Is the best path him starting right now this minute? Is the best path him sitting for two games? Five games? Six games? 10 games? Practicing a lot? Sitting in a meeting room with Alex Smith? Whatever it is.

"I don't care about Colt McCoy. I don't care about Case Keenum. I don't care about any other veteran. I don't care about what offensive coordinator has the job. Whatever's the best thing for him is what matters now. So, when we get to that end game, we start to look at the beginning part of this, right? Is, in their evaluation and their estimation, a quote, unquote, 'open competition' – is that the best thing for his development? If so, let's do it. If it's, 'No. No. No. We're preaching patience. He's gonna sit his butt down on the bench for however many weeks until he gets a feel for this NFL.' Then let's do that."

"Well, it goes without saying, at least at the start of training camp, you should be dangling that carrot in front of him," Paulsen said. "I think that happens automatically, to be honest with you, regardless of what the coach is saying, when you draft a guy in the first half of the first round. When you take a player as high as Dwayne Haskins – it doesn't matter if you're a quarterback or not – teams get you on the field quickly.

"You see this in other sports like in baseball, the first-round pick who just gets moved up to high-A because, moved up to Double-A. Well, he was hitting .217 in A-plus ball. 'Yeah, but he's got tools.' You just get pushed along, in the same way that as a quarterback – and this is why so many guys flop, I think – before you're ready, you just get thrown onto the field. So the open competition thing is gonna happen one way or the other."

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