Dwayne Haskins plummeted from one of the top quarterback prospects in the league to a complete bust in only two seasons after the Washington Football Team selected him with the No. 15 pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.
Now with the opportunity to resurrect his career after signing a one-year deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers, one of his former WFT teammates who knows him well hopes Haskins will take advantage of the second chance.
Alex Smith obviously spent a lot of time with Haskins this past season, and the veteran signal-caller believes the 23-year-old quarterback needs to learn how to focus on football and shut out all the outside noise if he hopes to succeed in the NFL.
“The first thing I hope with Dwayne — and I’ve told him this — is you don’t have a chance until you’ve eliminated a lot of the distractions going on in your life,” Smith said on Yahoo Sports NFL Podcast this week, per Steelers Depot. “It’s hard as a young player, as a young draft pick, certainly as a quarterback thrust with a lot of weight and expectations.”
“You’ve got a lot of voices telling you different things. In the end, this all comes down to playing well on the football field,” he added. “You have to be able to eliminate all that other stuff, because none of that matters if you can’t go out there and play at a high level. You’ll never be able to develop into the player, into your potential if you don’t eliminate all that stuff as well. So my hope for Dwayne is to do that.”
Haskins seemingly had every chance to prove his merit and worth with the Washington Football Team, but he scuttled the opportunity with purported immaturity, lackluster work ethic, poor performances, and a handful of regrettable and embarrassing off-the-filed missteps.
With a new lease on his NFL career — at least for now — Haskins shared a positive outlook on his surprising chance to catch on with a stable organization like the Steelers with little pressure on him out of the gate.