The consensus is that should happen immediately, something Redskins Coach Jay Gruden has been loath to do while he believes the team still has a chance to salvage the season despite an 0-3 start.
Haskins seemed to want nothing of the conversation when pressed into an impromptu news conference Friday.
“I can control what I can control,” he said of his role as Washington’s scout team quarterback. “The reps I get, I make the most of it.”
He said he feels he has grown in the first weeks of the season, both in studying the offense and in running the scout team against the starting defense He said he appreciates the scout team time because it allows him to go against the team’s best defensive players, presenting a bigger challenge.
When asked whether he is getting more confident, as the team’s offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell claims, Haskins shrugged slightly.
“Yeah,” he said. “If I didn’t, I don’t know how I would feel, but I just want to keep getting better, and when I get my name called I’ll be ready for it.”
During training camp, Redskins coaches expressed enthusiasm with the way Haskins learned the team’s offense and said they were happy with the way he approached his work. But they also cautioned that he was behind Keenum and Colt McCoy in terms of being ready to play in an actual game — something that was apparent in the mistakes Haskins occasionally would make in camp practices.
They say they continue to like the strides he has made during the season backing up Keenum, and O’Connell tried to downplay the criticism that has come up in recent days that the team isn’t preparing Haskins enough because he takes all of his practice with the second-team offense.
“Those scout-team reps are really mirrored reps from our offense in ways,” O’Connell said, explaining that a quarterback can learn a lot about calling pass protections and reading defenses without having to play with the first-team offense in practice.
Haskins said he has been studying extra game film and meeting separately with coaches to learn as much as he can as fast as he can.
With the Redskins playing the Giants and Daniel Jones, the quarterback most linked to him in the draft, Haskins did not seem to want to discuss the inevitable comparisons made between Jones, who is already starting, and Haskins, who hasn’t played yet.
“I want to be compared to Brady and Brees one day and not the guys in my class, so let’s keep it there,” Haskins said.
For now, his role could be more muddled with McCoy’s return to practice this week. McCoy, who probably would have won the starting job had he not been forced to sit the last several weeks due to complications from offseason leg surgeries, said he feels better now than he did in training camp.
“It was good to get out there the last couple days and throw and move,” McCoy said. “Eight weeks feels like a year.”
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