Josh Rosen has been put through the wringer in his first two NFL seasons — operating behind two of the worst pass-blocking offensive lines of the past decade with little to work with in the way of receiving options. Sam Darnold has been in a similar boat, though to a lesser extent, with the New York Jets. That creates a tough decision for NFL front offices when it comes to evaluating their young quarterbacks. How long do you stick with a player who is struggling on the field while excusing those poor performances due to their supporting cast?
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In Rosen’s case, the Arizona Cardinals decided the answer was one year, and the Miami Dolphins decided to give him just an additional three games before handing the reins back over to Ryan Fitzpatrick in 2019. Darnold has certainly produced more reason for optimism than Rosen, but his situation has been better and his 64.6 overall grade since the start of the 2018 season still ranks just 29th among the 32 quarterbacks with 1,000 or more offensive snaps over that stretch. He now enters his third season with New York, with uncertainty still lingering along the offensive line and at wide receiver.
I bring up those cases because it shows there is no set answer to how long a team will give a young quarterback, and similarly to Rosen and Darnold, Dwayne Haskins has what appears to be a brutal offensive environment in store for him in 2020 with the Washington Redskins. There were already those who wanted to bring in a free agent quarterback this offseason in Washington — perhaps reuniting Cam Newton with Ron Rivera. If Haskins falls flat in 2020 with the lack of talent around him, he might not get another chance.
The disclaimer: Terry McLaurin is very good at football
PFF's Austin Gayle broke down Terry McLaurin’s outstanding rookie season earlier this offseason, so I won’t go into too much depth here. This table — listing the highest receiving grades for any rookie wide receiver in the past decade with 250 or more routes — tells the story of what we should expect from McLaurin moving forward, though.
Highest Receiving Grades for Rookie WRs | Since 2010
|Odell Beckham Jr.||2014||91.2|
*Among players who ran 250 or more routes
There is not a single miss in that top 10. If a wideout balls out like McLaurin did as a rookie — particularly in a shaky offense like the Redskins had in 2019 – there’s a good chance they're going to continue to play at a high level for years to come. McLaurin’s speed, route-running and releases make him a true No. 1 option, capable of winning in all areas of the field. If nothing else, Haskins has that to work with.