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Dwayne Haskins makes strong case for backup job in Week 1 NFL preseason

Pittsburgh Steelers QB Dwayne Haskins had a strong outing in Week 1 of the NFL preseason. We recap his performance.

Dwayne Haskins #3 of the Pittsburgh Steelers reacts against the Philadelphia Eagles during the preseason game at Lincoln Financial Field on August 12, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers played their second preseason game on Thursday night against the Philadelphia Eagles. The Steelers have put starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger on ice through the first two preseason contests, allowing Mason Rudolph, Dwayne Haskins, and Josh Dobbs to compete for the QB2 and QB3 jobs on the roster.

Rudolph got the start for the second-straight week for the Steelers, while Haskins served as the backup. The former Washington Football Team starter is looking to win the backup job after being released by Washington last season. If Haskins can win the QB2 job, then he’ll be the heir apparent to Roethlisberger.

Stats

Haskins had good night at the office, completing 16-of-22 passes for 161 yards and a touchdown against the Eagles.

Analysis

Heading into preseason, a lot of people were interested to see what Haskins could do with the Steelers after being surprisingly released by Washington last season. The former first round pick has looked like a completely different quarterback and it showed on Thursday. Haskins looked decisive in his reads and made quick decisions with the football.

When he was with the Washington Football Team, Haskins sometimes tried to make a play with his arm instead of taking those check down throws. Last night, we saw the former Ohio State standout take and make those layup throws, which led to positive plays. He looked much better than Mason Rudolph and led the Steelers on four scoring drives.

However, Haskins did have his detractors as some tried to point out this throw below, which was actually the right play, but the wide receiver stopped running. The third-year QB steps up in the pocket, evades the pass rush, and tries to pick up the first down.

But Haskins had one of the best throws of the night in the third quarter, rolling out of the pocket and finding Anthony Johnson for a touchdown in the back of end zone.

Fantasy implications

Haskins will not hold any fantasy football value this season unless Roethlisberger gets hurt and is out for a considerable amount of time.