Dwayne Haskins' time on the bench lasted less than a full month into his rookie season.
The results from his sudden insertion into a Week 4 loss, as you could expect, weren't pretty. But after Haskins' coach was fired and the team eventually decided it would be best to use 2019 as a learning experience for its young signal-caller, Haskins showed signs of improvement. Having a familiar face to throw to didn't hurt, either.
In the months since the Redskins' final game of 2019, Haskins has zeroed in on improving as much as possible before his second season begins. Look no further than his trimmed physique. The 6-foot-4 quarterback who tended to play north of 230 pounds is now below 220.
"I just cut off a lot of toxic stuff in my life," Haskins explained Wednesday. "I feel really good right now, I've lost a lot of weight. I'm 218 [pounds] right now, I started training this year at like, 227, 228. Before I even came to the Redskins, I was like almost 235, 237, so I've just been dropping weight."
Haskins' teammate and fellow former Ohio State star Terry McLaurin sees a bright future for the both of them in the DMV.
"He looks really good," McLaurin said Thursday of Haskins, via team reporter Kyle Stackpole, "and I'm happy with how far he's come."
The next steps toward a prosperous season (or more) will take place on the practice field, where McLaurin said he might try to make his quarterback comfortable by going first in drills and running clean routes. McLaurin can do this because he's already taken his first significant steps as a professional. His rookie season was a success, catching 58 passes for 919 yards and seven touchdowns. He's earned a little bit of clout.
McLaurin will return to a corps in which he'll be considered the No. 1 target and might also be asked to take on an expanded role within the offense. He'll do so while running routes for a quarterback who spent much of his offseason bettering himself in all facets.
"I just wanted to be a man about my business and that's on and off the field," Haskins explained. "Not that I wasn't prior too, but now turning 23, still being young and growing, whenever there were questions about immaturity or lack of whatever it was, I was going to change that whether it was true or not just for myself because I needed to do that for me. I applied pressure with everything I did this offseason with my body and how I studied and it's making a big difference."
Washington is a team led by youngsters and a seasoned coach in Ron Rivera, who has the chance to prove he's still a legitimate head man after he was fired last year. Their first campaign together begins next month. The results remain to be seen.