The Redskins need a backup QB, a sensitive subject for fans

Chris Lingebach
March 20, 2020 - 4:02 pm

Colt McCoy's six-year run in Washington has officially come to a close after the longtime Redskins backup signed on for the same role with the Giants Thursday.

Case Keenum is gone too, signing a three-year deal with the Browns. The former Redskins passers will make a combined $7.5 million in 2020, which may be about the cost for the Redskins to replace one of them as they search for a backup to Dwayne Haskins.

As JP Finlay astutely observed on Twitter, the Redskins will have to sign somebody at some point.

With McCoy and Keenum gone and Alex Smith still not fully healed from his 2018 leg injury, the Redskins officially have one healthy quarterback on their roster. Haskins will not remain the sole healthy quarterback on the roster, of course, which has oddly become a sensitive subject among vocal Redskins fans on social media.

"It's bizarre because there's a segment of fans that think any conversation about a second quarterback is an insult to Dwayne Haskins, and it's just silly," Finlay told 106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier on Friday.

"They're gonna sign another quarterback, or they're gonna draft another quarterback," he continued. "But I don't think Alex Smith is playing and they're not going into the season with just Dwayne Haskins. On some level they gotta sign somebody."

As far as I can tell, there's a fair amount of fans not keen on the idea of trading for Cam Newton, who's likely to become a free agent as Carolina struggles to find a trade partner. That's not to say all fans are down on the idea, it's just hard to gather a consensus on these things. Still, the anti-Cam crowd is loud enough to break through the noise.

Jameis Winston is another high-quality quarterback. The difference here, he's actually available now. But many Redskins fans – again, only as far as I can tell – don't want him, either. Alas, it's a moot point anyway.

Many of these same fans scoffed at the idea of the Redskins being interested in Philip Rivers – a future Hall of Famer – when he became available.

There's a growing sentiment that doesn't quite meet reality, that if you make a suggestion of another quarterback, you're somehow discrediting Haskins. That's ignorant not only of reality – Haskins has not proven himself yet (which isn't to say that he won't) – but it also ignores simple roster construction theory: you need more than one quarterback.

But if you'd really like to ruin your day, log onto Twitter and merely suggest it's worth taking a look at Tua Tagovailoa, who only won a national championship as a true freshman, after a switch at halftime from Nick Saban (the greatest coach in college football history trusted this true freshman to bring Alabama back from a 13-0 deficit in the national title game, and he did). The Redskins did meet with Tagovailoa and Joe Burrow at the NFL Combine, so perhaps it's not such a preposterous suggestion.

"I don't think they should be in any position to be trading away picks for a quarterback," Finlay said. "I don't think you make a move to go get Andy Dalton or anything like that, or Cam Newton, for that matter. I think it's gotta be somebody that's a free agent, and I think you're spending less than 10 million bucks.

"But to me, Ryan Tannehill signed last year in Tennessee for $7 million and I think there are gonna be plenty – not just in Washington – but plenty of teams around the league that are looking at that and saying 'that's what we should be doing.' I mean, you saw the Raiders bringing in Marcus Mariota. I think that will be kind of the new model of when you have a quarterback you're just not sure of, you bring somebody in that can really compete with them."

"Ron Rivera has given every indication that that's his plan," he continued. "He talked about a very competitive competition at quarterback and that's what he wants. I think Haskins is their guy, but if they want real competition for him, there aren't that many names that are free agents that will provide that. Joe Flacco doesn't provide that at all.

"To me, the only guy out there that would is Jameis Winston. I know Keim shut that down, that they're not interested in Winston. Outside of that, what are you talking about? Blake Bortles or Blaine Gabbert? If Blake Bortles or Blaine Gabbert provide real competition to Dwayne Haskins, then we have a much bigger problem than anybody ever thought."

"Yeah, no doubt. And I think your point is so correct, by the way," Paulsen noted. "People have just decided that any comment that isn't 'Dwayne Haskins will eventually win the MVP' is hating, and it's disrespectful and you have the audacity."

"It's like, we don't really know what he is yet," he said. "I mean he played a half season not very well until the final six quarters. And he was awesome in those six quarters and it gives us a lot of hope."

"And he got hurt," Finlay interjected.

"And then he got hurt for the second time in a half season!" Paulsen said. "So the camp that has just driven their heels in on, 'You're a jerk if you don't say that he's the next great thing in Washington,' it's very weird what's going on right now."

Follow @ChrisLingebach and @1067TheFan

Related: