Dwayne Haskins – Quarterback
School: The Ohio State University
Class: Redshirt Sophomore
Weight: 220 Pounds
Dwayne Haskins NFL Draft Profile
Top 3 Player Traits
As a passer, Haskins’ greatest asset is his ability to throw with touch. He frequently dissects the intermediate portions of the field by showing an uncanny knack for placing the football exactly where it needs to be, often doing so between defenders. On this throw, he uncorks a beautiful seam route down the field for a touchdown. Notice the arc with which the ball travels. Haskins is able to get it over the head of the defender and have it fall right in the arms of his receiver for a touchdown. A true thing of beauty.
Here’s another great example. Without hesitation, Haskins throws the ball with enough height to get over the heads of the underneath linebackers, but with enough velocity to reach the receiver before the safety arrives. This is the kind of intermediate throw Haskins thrives on. Washington played zone for most of the day against Haskins in this game, and he made them pay for it.
Here’s a similar play. Haskins does a quick pump fake to his left before throwing to his receiver in the vacated area behind the zone. These types of throws require a tremendous amount of touch, as they are neither bullets nor lobs. Haskins throws them to perfection.
As you can see, Haskins made Washington’s zone defense pay with this type of throw all day. It’s a tall seam route over the head of the underneath linebackers, and it arrives with enough time for the receiver to secure the catch before he is hit.
This is one of Haskins’ best throws of the year. He pumps left, steps up in the pocket, and unleashes an absolute beauty down the right sideline for a touchdown. Notice how the ball falls right into the hands of the receiver; he couldn’t have handed it to him any better.
NFL quarterbacks must be able to manipulate defenders with their eyes in order to open up throwing lanes. This is another area where Haskins excels. On this play, Haskins immediately looks to the far right after taking the snap. This look occupies the underneath defender just enough to open up a throwing lane to the right slot. The defender is quick to rush back, but it’s too late. Had Haskins just stared down this receiver from the start, it likely would have been an interception. Instead, Haskins was able to create the window with his eyes.
This is a pretty touchdown against Northwestern. Haskins spends the primary part of the play looking to the left, before coming back to the middle and delivering. Doing so carries the Northwestern defenders to the left, opening up the middle of the field for this touchdown throw.
Here we see a very similar play against Washington. Haskins needs to keep the safety out of the middle of the field, so he takes the snap and looks to his left. This opens up the seam, and the receiver is able to haul in the touchdown pass with the safety occupied. It’s a window that was wholly created by Haskins, as the safety is watching him the entire way.
Washington learned the hard way in this game not to play zone coverage against Haskins. On this play, he looks right, and the defense once again drifts that way. Haskins then calmly shuffles up in the pocket, and fires a touchdown to his left post. It’s still a tight window, but because of Haskins’ masterful manipulation, it’s just large enough to fit the ball in.
These types of plays are why Haskins was so good at working the middle of the field, which is crucial in the NFL. He carries the defenders to the left with his eyes, all the while knowing that the intermediate dig route is coming through the backside. As soon as the defenders have shifted, that’s when he steps up and fires with confidence.
Pocket Presence/ Awareness
It’s tough to be a successful NFL quarterback if you’re unable to move efficiently within the pocket. Throughout the season, Haskins showed himself to be a very comfortable pocket quarterback, frequently standing tall and shifting within the pocket in order to find space to make throws. This is more of a natural feel than something that can be taught, so it bodes well for Haskins that he looked strong in this area.
Pressure up the middle, no big deal. Haskins shifts up and to the right, all while keeping his eyes downfield. He stands in and takes the hit, but not before delivering the ball for a first down.
This is what makes the Tom Bradys of the world so special. Faced with pressure around both edges, Haskins calmly steps up in the pocket, keeps his eyes downfield, and fires for a first down.
Here we see the pocket presence show up again. Haskins knows where the pressure is coming from. He calmly slides and resets without losing his composure, which allows him to immediately locate a matchup downfield. Though the pass is incomplete, it’s a good decision by Haskins and it does draw a flag for pass interference.
The pocket’s closing in on Haskins, but he stands tall and strong. Watch him go through his progressions. He starts to the left, moves to the middle, and eventually finds a receiver on the right side for a first down. Even better, Haskins’ feet move with his eyes, ensuring that he is always in a position to throw.
It doesn’t get any better than this. Haskins takes the snap, scoots up in the pocket, and without any hesitation, fires a dime to his running back in the corner. The ball is placed where only the receiver can get it. Not an easy throw to make.
3 Player Traits In Need Of Improvement
Play Under Pressure/ Free Blitzers
Although Haskins showed the ability to move well within the pocket, his overall play when under pressure left a lot to be desired. This was especially the case when pressure was not accounted for by the offensive line. On this play, the right end pushes the tight end right into the face of Haskins. He’s able to step up, but the result is a floater over the head of a wide open receiver.
This play was about as bad as it gets. Haskins has two free rushers in his face, and he just chucks it up to nobody. He was lucky this ball wasn’t intercepted, as the defender is in perfect position and simply drops the ball.
Here, Haskins has a defensive end run free and he is forced to hurry the pass as a result. However, he still has an open receiver on a fairly easy completion, and he airmails the pass.
Purdue brings the house here, and Haskins knows it. He has two guys coming off the edge, and his left guard is beat as well. Haskins is forced to step up, but in doing so he loses his mechanics. His base is too wide, he’s a bit off balance, and he’s not able to get enough juice on the pass. The result is a near-interception.
Haskins has time initially on this play, but it’s a long developing deep shot, and a defender breaks through. Haskins is about to get hit, so to avoid the sack, he simply chucks up this ball. The receiver is 1 on 1 with the corner running a go route down the sideline, but without time to step into your throw, there’s no chance this ball gets there. Haskins throws it anyway. It’s woefully short, and he’s lucky to not get picked.
Footwork and Mechanics
As a quarterback, it’s so important that your feet and your arm work together. Sure, there will be times where you can’t be in perfect position to make a throw, but your intention should be to always step into your throws with your feet facing the target. This was another area where Haskins struggled at times.
The Penn State game was not a good piece of tape for Haskins. Here, he’s under pressure and steps up in the pocket. He makes the right decision, but look at his feet. His left foot is pointing left, but he’s throwing to the right. As a result, the ball is low, soft, and incomplete.
TCU brings a corner blitz, and Haskins has his receiver 1 on 1 with the safety on a stutter-go down the right sideline. This should be a touchdown. But Haskins falls back instead of stepping into his pass, and the ball is thrown woefully short.
This time, Haskins will try the left sideline. But while stepping to his left, he doesn’t transfer enough of his weight forward. The result is another underthrow.
This may be the worst of them. With a clean pocket, Haskins panics and gets happy feet. He completely loses his base, chucks it without his feet underneath him, and ends up with a ball that sails over the head of both the receiver and the DB.
This play results in a touchdown. Even so, it’s concerning for Haskins. He again throws falling back, and his feet come out from underneath him in the process. The ball floats a bit but is ultimately able to get there. If Haskins doesn’t correct these footwork issues, the NFL won’t be kind of him. His arm is not strong enough to compensate for poor mechanics. Speaking of which…
A lot of people are selling Dwayne Haskins as a guy with a big arm who can “make all the throws”. I’m not sure why, but after watching the tape, I can tell you that this is not the case.
On this play, Haskins lets a floater sail incomplete. There are two receivers in the area, and it’s not entirely clear which one he’s throwing to. Either way, the ball should not look like this coming out of his hand.
Perhaps the most egregious example. Haskins faces absolutely zero pressure. He steps into his throw and uncorks it deep to a wide open receiver running a go route. The ball gets nowhere near him.
Against Nebraska, Haskins has a receiver splitting the defense down the seam. This has to be a firm throw down the field. Again, it falls short and hits the receiver in the legs.
Here’s an incomplete pass against Michigans. Haskins takes a deep drop, takes a few steps, and fires deep down the sideline. But notice how the ball slows down and tends to lose energy on the back end as it comes down. That’s going to make general managers nervous.
NFL Team Fits
The New York Giants
The Giants chose to bypass their quarterback of the future last year in order to draft running back Saquon Barkley, so they’ll certainly be in the mix this year. Eli Manning is 38 and on the last year of his contract, and there’s very little chance he gets resigned after this year. Haskins has expressed interest in playing in New York, and being drafted to the Giants would provide him the opportunity to sit if necessary, as he only has one full year as a starter under his belt.
The Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars went to the AFC Championship two years ago on the heels of a great defense. They hid their quarterback, Blake Bortles, for most of the season behind a user-friendly scheme, and he came to life in the playoffs. The Jaguars bet that he would continue his success in 2017. He didn’t, and the defense fell apart as well. Jacksonville is looking for any sort of upgrade at the position, and with the 7th overall pick, they’re absolutely in the mix for Haskins.
The Miami Dolphins
The Dolphins have decided to move on from Ryan Tannehill, and that leaves a huge hole in their roster, putting them right in the market for a new quarterback. Though #TankforTua is a possibility, don’t be surprised if they snag Haskins if he’s available, or even if they trade up to pick him with a less QB needy team like San Francisco, New York Jets, Oakland, or Tampa.