Let me start off by saying this first. I currently am a student at Ohio State and get season tickets every year, so I have watched every game that Dwayne Haskins has played live in The Shoe and watched all his away games on TV. Yes, you can say I am biased in that case, but when it comes to discussing Haskins as an NFL prospect, I try my best to be as unbiased as possible, unlike most of the NFL writers who salivate over Kyler Murray. However, I am still a big fan of Haskins.
Haskins started his career as an Ohio State Buckeye quarterback when he came in to play for the injured JT Barrett against Michigan. The game was close and Haskins never played in this big of a game. That didn’t matter to him, as he stayed calm and collected and helped to lead the Buckeyes to victory. With that game, it was obvious Haskins had the potential to be a great quarterback. Even with this, he still had a competition going into the 2018 season against Joe Burrow but won that easily. The rest of the season will forever live in the record books.
In the 2018 season, Haskins finished with one of the best seasons for a quarterback of all time. He won Big Ten player of the year, was a Heisman finalist, won the Big Ten championship and Rose Bowl, as well as those games’ MVP awards. He broke the record for most passing yards in a game at OSU, most passing yards in a season in the Big Ten and OSU with 4,381 yards and most passing touchdowns in a season in the Big Ten and OSU with 50 touchdowns. Just to remind everyone, these Big Ten records were formally owned by Drew Brees and yet he surpassed them and more.
Before the season started, Haskins wasn’t discussed much as a top NFL prospect seeing that it was his first season as a starter. That was all he needed though to prove he could be the top quarterback to be drafted. His stock continued to rise as he played fantastic against the top defenses of Michigan, Northwestern and Washington. In all these games, he never had a problem getting to the endzone. Even in Ohio State’s off games, like Purdue, he continued to do his best to give them a chance for victory. After the season, it wasn’t sure whether he would enter the draft, but if he did, it was known he would be a first-round pick. With this information, he ultimately decided to enter the draft.
In the NFL Combine, Haskins did everything possible to make an NFL scout fall in love with him. He was the best in every passing drill and his test results were solid. The only one he struggled with was the 40-yard dash, but as all of us know, except for Stephen A Smith, he is a passer, not a runner. Outside of the drills and testing, he impressed everyone with his interviews. They loved his football IQ and his leadership. Haskins proved to have everything you look for in a pro-style quarterback. Just last week, he participated in Ohio State’s Pro Fay and impressed once again. Scouts gave him an A+ in all his passing drills, connecting with most of his passes to receivers he has a connection with. He also proved to be a good teammate as he checked up on Parris Campbell when he fell down in a drill rather than focusing on himself.
Arm strength? Check.
Good teammate? Check.
Football IQ? Check.
Haskins has it all, except for running, so why is it that Kyler Murray is supposed to go before him? I don’t know, but if you have the answer, please let me know. For years now, the NFL has preferred pocket passing quarterbacks over running quarterbacks, so I don’t know why Murray would be preferred over Haskins. However, we’ll see what happens in the draft and in their respective careers. Most mock drafts have Haskins going sixth overall to the New York Giants, but I wouldn’t be surprised if teams traded up to draft him earlier. Haskins is a winner and my money is on him to end up being the best quarterback of the 2019 NFL Draft.