Washington's Bill Callahan: Dwayne Haskins not a candidate to start at quarterback

Shalise Manza Young
·Yahoo Sports Columnist

Earlier Monday, Washington president Bruce Allen spoke to media after the firing of Jay Gruden as the team’s head coach after six-plus seasons. Longtime NFL and college coach Bill Callahan, who has been with the team since 2015 as offensive line and assistant head coach, has been named interim head coach.

Allen was of course asked about the status of rookie first-round pick Dwayne Haskins, who has played just 32 snaps thus far, coming on in Week 3 against the New York Giants.

Callahan would make the decision on Haskins playing, Allen said.

Callahan: Not a candidate to start

Washington interim head coach Bill Callahan, center, said rookie Dwayne Haskins isn't a candidate to start the team's next game. (AP)
Washington interim head coach Bill Callahan, center, said rookie Dwayne Haskins isn't a candidate to start the team's next game. (AP)

Well, Callahan has a decision, sort of.

While he said he doesn’t yet know who will be starting at quarterback for Washington this week against the Miami Dolphins, he does know that Haskins is not a candidate; the job will go to either Case Keenum or Colt McCoy.

Callahan said the team is checking on Keenum’s health and will decide between he and McCoy.

McCoy started Washington’s last game, Sunday’s 33-7 thumping at the hands of the New England Patriots.

Callahan added that the coaching staff needs to develop a “package of plays” for Haskins that he’s comfortable with and that he knows are “his” before he’s ready to start. Coaches also believe the 15th overall pick needs to get Haskins’ confidence up.

Allen: ‘We’re excited to have him’

There have been reports that Gruden did not want Haskins, and that drafting him was either Allen or team owner Daniel Snyder’s preference.

Allen downplayed the notion that Gruden wasn’t a Haskins fan, and said the organization is excited to have him.

“When we’re setting the draft board the coaches are involved and they sign off on everything. As far as Dwayne, we’re excited as hell to have him on this football team and we think he has a great future ahead of him,” Allen said. “He’s working very hard, he’s learning the system, and when coach Callahan decides to put him in, he’ll make that decision, but Jay was excited about Dwayne and I think he probably talked to several of you from OTAs and training camp about how well he was doing.”

Haskins said in the days leading up to that Week 4 game with the Giants that he didn’t mind sitting and learning because Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers didn’t start as rookie either, and those are players he’s trying to be like.

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