Washington Football Team benches Haskins for Allen

Dwayne Haskins lost the starting quarterback job and the Washington Football Team is turning to Kyle Allen.

Allen will start Week 5 against the Los Angeles Rams. He will be backed up by veteran Alex Smith, who hasn’t taken an NFL snap since suffering a gruesome leg injury nearly two years ago.



The 24-year-old Allen was acquired by Washington in the offseason, reuniting him with head coach Ron Rivera and offensive coordinator Scott Turner from their time together with the Carolina Panthers.

A first-round pick in 2019, Haskins has completed 61 percent of his passes with four touchdowns, three interceptions and one fumble. Washington is 1-3.


Kyle Allen familiar with the system

Allen started 12 games for the Panthers in 2019 due to Cam Newton’s season-ending foot injury. Turner was quarterbacks coach in Carolina and joined Rivera, the first-year head coach of the Washington Football Team, to be the primary play-caller.

Kyle Allen
Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

Rivera said in the offseason that the trade, which cost Washington a fifth-round pick, made too much sense.

“Kyle is also a young guy who has a live arm, understands the game, understands how we do things,” Rivera said. “So, I’m excited about what the potential could be.”

The Washington Football Team overhauled the entire front office with Rivera holding the primary voice in football decisions. In essence, the scouting staff and personnel department that wanted Haskins was removed in the offseason.

But Haskins lost 20 pounds, showed up after remote offseason training with a chip on his shoulder, and was named the starter over Allen in mid-August.

Haskins’ development hasn’t been fast enough

Dwayne Haskins
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Injuries to the offensive line, including Pro Bowl guard Brandon Scherff, and ongoing growing pains at left tackle were not aids in Haskins’ development.

Rivera said last week he wanted to see “development” from Haskins against the Baltimore Ravens, including “making the right decisions.” But Washington lost 31-17, its third consecutive defeat by at least two touchdowns since beating the Philadelphia Eagles to open the 2020 season.

Haskins, 23, has played in 13 games in his first two NFL seasons. He has 11 touchdowns, 10 interceptions and has been sacked 42 times.

–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)