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Ron Rivera Says He Made Decision to Cut Dwayne Haskins, Daniel Snyder Supportive

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2020

Washington Football Team quarterback Dwayne Haskins (7) runs with the ball during the first half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020, in Landover, Md. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Carolyn Kaster/Associated Press

Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera said Wednesday he was the one who made the decision to release quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr. this week.

According to Nicki Jhabvala of the Washington Post, Rivera said: "I made the decision. I informed the owner [Daniel Snyder] of my decision. He was supportive and it was just something I felt we had to do. It was something I felt was in the best interest of both parties."

Rivera added"I felt it was time to make the move."

Despite Haskins' status as the No. 15 overall pick in the 2019 NFL draft, Rivera cut Haskins after Washington fell 20-13 to the Carolina Panthers last week, dropping Haskins' record as a starter this season to 1-5.

Aside from his poor play, Haskins' release may have had to do with off-the-field concerns as well. Namely, Haskins was recently photographed partying with strippers while not wearing a mask, which is a violation of COVID-19 protocol.

As a result, Haskins was fined $40,000 and stripped of his captaincy prior to his release.

Haskins completed 61.4 percent of his passes for 1,439 yards, five touchdowns and seven interceptions, and he also lost his job with the first team after opening the season as the starter through four games.

He initially lost the job to Kyle Allen, who was then replaced by Alex Smith after he suffered a season-ending injury. With Smith nursing a leg injury, Haskins started Washington's past two games.

After Washington fell behind against Carolina on Sunday, Haskins was replaced by Taylor Heinicke, who will start in Week 17 if Smith is unable to go.

While Haskins isn't far removed from being a high draft pick, Rivera had no personal investment in him since Washington selected Haskins while Rivera was still head coach of the Panthers.

Haskins undoubtedly got a quick hook, but with a career record of 3-10 as a starter to go along with 2,804 yards, 12 touchdowns and 14 picks, he clearly wasn't developing as fast as some had hoped.

The release of Haskins means Washington is likely without a quarterback of the future on its current roster, but the immediate goal is to beat the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 17, which would clinch the NFC East and the No. 4 playoff seed in the NFC.

As for Haskins, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday that the Panthers are one of several teams interested in him on the free-agent market.

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