The Washington Redskins want fan involvement in the 2020 NFL Draft, even though the fans can't physically be present due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Washington is inviting its fans to the "Virtual Draft Experience," a three-hour live stream broadcast featuring Redskins players and coaches, including quarterback Dwayne Haskins.
The Redskins made sure to mention Haskins as one of the players expected to be "in attendance" at the draft party, joining Redskins legend Brian Mitchell, head coach Ron Rivera and Vice President of Player Personnel Kyle Smith. Haskins has been under fire this offseason, wondering if he will be the Redskins' starting quarterback this fall.
Haskins didn't have a strong rookie season, completing just 58.6% of his passes for 1,365 yards, seven touchdowns, seven interceptions and a 76.1 rating in nine games (seven starts). In Haskins' final two starts, he completed 72.1% of his passes for 394 yards and four touchdowns for a 131.4 passer rating, showcasing some improvement as the year went on.
Rivera did not draft Haskins as he was the head coach of the Carolina Panthers last season, so the new head coach may be looking for a change at quarterback. The Redskins did trade for Kyle Allen this offseason, who started 12 games for the Panthers in 2019. Rivera also won't anoint Haskins as the starter either.
"He's got that type of potential, but he's got to grow into it," Rivera said. "Nothing will be given. He's not anointed, that's for doggone sure. I expect him to come in and compete and work, and we'll see what happens."
The Redskins own the No. 2 overall selection in the draft and are in a position to select Tua Tagovailoa with the pick if the Cincinnati Bengals draft Joe Burrow first overall. While Tagovailoa is an intriguing pick given the Redskins' quarterback situation, Chase Young would also be on the board as the consensus best defensive player available.
Haskins' presence at the Redskins draft party isn't counted as a vote of confidence (even though the team highlighted his appearance), but the quarterback can take it as a good sign he's in the team's plans for 2020. Washington isn't giving up on Haskins yet.