Washington releases first-round pick Dwayne Haskins

Washington quarterback Dwayne Haskins, who had replaced injured quarterback Alex Smith, lost his job when head coach Ron Rivera waived him after a catastrophic performance against the Carolina Panthers this past Sunday.

Recently, the team fined Haskins $40,000 for COVID-19 violations after he attended a strip club without a mask, sources said. Reportedly, this is the biggest fine a player has received for a COVID violation – more than half of Haskins’ weekly paycheck

“Definitely the hardest week of my life,” Haskins said after the game. “I just want to bounce back and move forward, pray and get my life together.”

Haskins was benched in October after four games. He requested a trade earlier this season, but injuries to Brandon Allen and Alex Smith necessitated his return to the starting lineup in a Week 15 loss to Seattle. He has five touchdown passes and seven interceptions in seven games (six starts) this season.

Rivera announced Monday that either Smith, who is still recovering from his injury, or Taylor Heinicke will debut for Washington in the closing stages of the regular season.

Heinicke was studying online classes at Old Dominion University, where he once played quarterback, and preparing for final exams when Washington called about being the team’s quarantine quarterback.

Rivera issued this statement on Haskin’s release: “This afternoon, I met with Dwayne and informed him that we would be releasing him. I told him that I believe it benefits both parties that we go our separate ways. We want to thank Dwayne for his contributions these last two seasons and wish him well moving forward.

Haskins was Washington’s No. 1 pick in the 15th round of the 2019 NFL draft. He will not get another chance with the organization.

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