Pros and Cons of Lions Claiming Dwayne Haskins

Read more on the pros and cons of the Lions claiming former Washington Football Team quarterback Dwayne Haskins

After a failed two-year stint in Washington, Dwayne Haskins, the No. 15 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, has been placed on waivers. 

He was released by Washington Football Team head coach/de facto general manager Ron Rivera Monday, a day after Haskins delivered a dismal 14-of-28 passing performance against the Carolina Panthers, which included two interceptions and a measly 36.9 passer rating.

At just 23 years old, there's no doubt he'll get a second chance with another NFL franchise.

It begs the question: Should it come with the Lions?

Here are the pros and cons of Detroit being a landing spot for the second-year passer.


Matthew Stafford could be on his way out of town

The Lions' 12th-year passer could be nearing the end of the road in Motown.

Speculation has run rampant recently that Stafford and the Lions might amicably move on from each other at season's end.

If so, it might make it a worthwhile investment for the organization to take a flier on Haskins.

And even if Stafford is brought back for another season by the next regime, it still could make sense for Detroit to stash Haskins on the bench.

The advantageous aspect of that is Haskins could learn under No. 9 and hopefully be able to replace him under center in 2022.

For the 2021 campaign, he'd also be a higher-end backup than both Chase Daniel and David Blough -- two quarterbacks that don't bring nearly as much upside as Haskins.

All in all, he'd be a nice insurance policy for the team at quarterback, no matter if it decides to keep or move on from Stafford this offseason.

Lions could use first-round draft pick on a position other than QB 

There is the angle that by picking up Haskins, the Lions' next general manager could then use the organization's 2021 first-rounder on a position other than quarterback.

Detroit could badly use help along the defensive line and at linebacker. 

So, instead of reaching for a signal-caller at No. 7 overall (where the Lions are currently slotted to pick) after Clemson's Trevor Lawrence and Ohio State's Justin Fields are already off the board, they could wait until the second round to take Florida's Kyle Trask or Alabama's Mac Jones -- two 2020 Heisman Trophy finalists.

Detroit could then still get its potential long-term successor to Stafford plus address a huge void in the pass-rush department or at linebacker with the No. 7 pick. 

And, you can make the argument that filling one of those two major holes on defense should be a bigger priority for the Lions in round one than selecting a quarterback, especially if Haskins is already on the roster.



Haskins' off-the-field troubles 

As much as Haskins' poor play on the field was a factor in his release (12 touchdowns, 14 interceptions and 2,804 yards in 16 career games), he likely would not have been cut with one game left in the season if it wasn't for his poor off-the-field decisions.

This season alone, he's been fined twice for COVID-19 protocol violations. 

The first one came after Washington’s Week 6 loss to the N.Y. Giants, when he made reservations for a family friend at the team hotel. He subsequently was fined $4,833, and was relegated to third-string QB duties until Week 10, when Kyle Allen suffered a season-ending ankle injury. 

Haskins then became veteran Alex Smith's backup, until Smith suffered a calf strain against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 14 that put him on the shelf for two weeks. 

As a result, Haskins got the starting nod under center during Washington's Week 15 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. 

After the game, he proceeded to be pictured maskless at a private party that he had claimed was a birthday celebration for his girlfriend. 

The NFL came down hard on him for it, and slapped him with a $40,000 fine -- the largest known one for a player in violation of COVID-19 protocol. 

Rivera still decided to start him in Week 16 against the Carolina Panthers, but after he had already stripped Haskins of his captaincy.

He laid a stinker in the loss to the Panthers (just 14-of-28 passing, 154 yards and two picks, to go along with a fumble and a paltry QBR of 4.1), and was actually benched before the end of the game.

Rivera had seen enough, and cut ties with the once-promising passer Monday.

The Ohio State product will now go into his next job with baggage and the reputation for being trouble off the field -- perhaps not even worth the risk despite his youth.

With a new regime set to take over in the Motor City in 2021, this could also be the case with the Lions. 

Undoubtedly, his track record off the field will be a huge negative for all 32 NFL franchises when it comes to deciding whether he's worth taking a second chance on.

His past production 

He didn't show very many signs of turning the corner as an NFL passer during his time in Washington. 

His numbers were underwhelming as already mentioned above, and likely will strike some fear among front offices looking into potentially giving him a second chance.

His lackluster production as a member of the Football Team also included just 6.3 yards per pass attempt, 5.4 adjusted yards per attempt and only 175.3 yards per game through the air.

Those aren't numbers that are going to get general managers across the league excited about Haskins. 

In his next NFL stop -- wherever it may be -- he will need to do a lot in order to quiet the individuals that have already begun to label him as a draft bust.

With the present situation the Lions' franchise is in, he likely won't get his shot at redemption in Detroit, however. 

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