The writing is on the wall for Dwayne Haskins in Washington.
Head coach Ron Rivera benched Haskins in favor of Kyle Allen earlier this week, sending the 2019 15th overall pick to the bench just four weeks into the season. Haskins wasn't only demoted to the backup role; he's now third on Washington's depth chart behind Alex Smith.
On Sunday, just hours before Haskins was set to be a healthy scratch for the first time in his career, one report from Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports surfaced that Washington could be looking to trade the quarterback before the Oct. 29 deadline. Rival executives are already looking at Haskins film, too, the report says.
It's unclear what Washington could net in return for the second-year quarterback. But, if Rivera has decided that Haskins is not the answer at the position long-term, it's worth inquiring what the team could get for him.
So, if the Burgundy and Gold do ultimately decide to trade away Haskins, where could he end up?
Here are three teams that could be interested in Haskins...
There is no team that is a better fit for Haskins than the Steelers.
Pittsburgh has a future Hall of Fame quarterback in Ben Roethlisberger, but he's 38 years old and coming off a significant elbow injury. The 2020 season could very well be Big Ben's last in the NFL.
As we saw last season when Roethlisberger was injured, the Steelers have a clear issue at backup quarterback. Mason Rudolph was borderline horrendous when he played, while Delvin "Duck" Hodges was no better. If Pittsburgh even had a competent quarterback last year, they would have made the playoffs.
In the Steel City, Haskins could sit the remainder of the season behind Big Ben, learning the ropes from one of the league's best passers over the past two decades. Once Roethlisberger ultimately decides to hang up the cleats, Haskins should be ready to take over.
The Steelers have better weapons on offense than Washington. They're also one of the best run organizations in the NFL. Going to Pittsburgh would give Haskins a fresh start, and also the chance to rewrite the narrative of his career down the line.
2. New England Patriots
The Patriots seem to have found their heir to Tom Brady in Cam Newton. Before testing positive for COVID-19, Newton had been brilliant for New England, looking like his 2015 MVP self.
While Newton might be the answer for New England short-term at the QB position, it's worth remembering he is only under contract for the remainder of the 2020 season. Should he keep up his impressive play, Newton could earn an extension before the season ends. But, of course, nothing is guaranteed.
As we saw in New England's game last Monday against the Chiefs, the Patriots will be in trouble offensively if Newton has to miss multiple games. Both Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham were unimpressive and borderline unstartable moving forward.
If New England were to acquire Haskins, the second-year QB could sit behind Newton for the rest of the season, learning the ropes from a quarterback he already has a relationship with and has trained with in the past. Newton has dealt with his own share of struggles in the NFL, and could certainly have a mentor-type role with Haskins for the remainder of the season.
Also, very few coaches, if any, get more out of their players than Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. There's a reason Haskins was a first-round pick last year; he still has plenty of talent and ability.
If Haskins is given the chance to learn under Belichick, New England could be the team that ultimately gets the most out of him.
So far in 2020, quarterback Derek Carr is off to an excellent start for the Raiders. Through four weeks, Carr has thrown for 1,095 yards, eight touchdowns and zero (!!) interceptions.
The issue in Vegas, however, is what happens if Carr goes down? The Raiders spent a lot of money in free agency on backup quarterback Marcus Mariota, but several reports from training camp were that he was less than impressive. He's also currently on IR with a pec injury, meaning Nathan Peterman is Vegas' current backup.
Of course, Raiders head coach Jon Gruden is the brother of former Washington head coach Jay Gruden, the same person who by multiple accounts did not want Washington to draft Haskins last year. So, if Jon askes his brother for any input on Haskins, don't expect a positive endorsement from Jay.
Jon is not his brother, however. Prior to taking the head coaching job with the Raiders, the elder Gruden was an ESPN analyst who specialized in scouting young quarterbacks. He almost certainly has his own evaluation on Haskins, too.
Even with his up-and-down play, Haskins is currently a much better quarterback than Peterman. And at age 23, he likely has more upside than Mariota, too. The Raiders have better weapons than Washington, too, highlighted by tight end Darren Waller, a target vacuum who's a quarterback's best friend.
The Raiders have a system in place where Haskins can succeed. If Gruden wanted to take a chance on Haskins, there's certainly a scenario where the Raiders head coach at least inquires about the second-year quarterback.