ANALYSIS: Dwayne Haskins finds a second chance in Pittsburgh


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Former first-round pick Dwayne Haskins signed a one-year future/reserve contract with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Emma Rushworth, Opinion Editor

Former Ohio State and Washington Football Team quarterback Dwayne Haskins visited the Pittsburgh Steelers office the morning of Jan. 21. Later in the day, it was announced that the team signed him to a one-year future/reserve contract. Let’s break down what this means- now and in the near future- for the team.

It’s worth starting an analysis of Haskins by looking at the recent scandal in his personal life that has affected his career. The reason the Washington Football Team cut Haskins in the middle of last season was due to a break-in COVID-19 protocol. Haskins was identified in a post documenting a party in December, surrounded by strippers and not a face mask in sight.

While this would be a non-issue in any other year, Haskins seriously violated protocols designed to keep his teammates and other players and staff safe. His head coach at the time, Ron Rivera, was battling cancer and at high risk of contracting or dying from COVID-19.

Now that the personal issues have been addressed, Haskins can be analyzed like most football players: for his skills on the field. Haskins stands at 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighs 220 pounds, which is impressive for a quarterback. In his seven games of the 2020 season, Haskins had a completion rate of 61.4%, with five touchdowns and 1,439 yards. However, he was also intercepted seven times. This is close to veteran quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers Ben Roethlisberger’s 10 interceptions for the season. Roethlisberger played in 15 of the 16 games this season.

Haskins comes with a lot of talent and potential to grow, especially under the guidance of a future Hall of Fame quarterback. After watching his professional and collegiate career highlights, it’s clear that he is quick and flexible. He excels at being able to wiggle his way out if the pocket collapses and can read the field offensively very well. Haskins also has a great arm, throwing the ball well and not hastily or rough.

One drawback of Haskins is that he tends to target the same receivers, leaving a lot of room for error or interceptions. He is not skilled with reading defenses, which also leaves more to be desired in terms of growth and development professionally.

While the signing of Dwayne Haskins was out of left field, it certainly may not be a bad move. If Haskins can straighten out the issues in his personal life and commit to developing and furthering his career, I can see him being in Pittsburgh for more than one year.

After the 2021 season, it’s expected that Ben Roethlisberger will retire after 18 years in the NFL. If he does, Haskins would be a great replacement for him. Roethlisberger can use this season to train Haskins and help him navigate both on and off the field.

Even if Haskins is only relegated to third-string quarterback this season, I can see him thriving in the right conditions. This signing was low risk for the Steelers but can potentially have a high reward if Dwayne Haskins can live up to his earlier talent.

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