The New York Giants are in the market for a quarterback in the 2019 NFL Draft. The team has not tried to hide that at all. Like the fans, the Giants are aware that Eli Manning is not getting any younger and finding his successor sooner is better than later.
The 2019 NFL Draft class has multiple 1st round talents in it. One name that keeps getting associated with the Giants is Dwayne Haskins. Haskins is an impressive, young quarterback from Ohio State.
On Monday, I officially finished my two-week project in which I attempted to put myself in the shoes of an NFL scout. I went through and watched the game-tape from Dwayne Haskins’s entire (one-season) career. Just like Pat Shurmur, I watched every Dwayne Haskins game. After taking extensive notes on Haskins’s 2018 season, here is what I found:
Dwayne Haskins is one of the most productive quarterbacks in Big Ten college football history. In his one and only season as a starter, Dwayne Haskins shattered all the records. Dwayne threw for a Big Ten record 50 touchdown passes in 2018. His 4,831 passing yards were also a Big Ten record.
Haskins had five games of 400 or more passing yards. Ohio State University ran its offense through The talented passer and he delivered way more often than not. He was truly impressive in 2018, coming in third for the Heisman Trophy voting. He was also named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year.
Ohio State v. Northwestern:
If there is one game to point out to sell someone on Dwayne Haskins, it is his game against Northwestern in the Big Ten Championship. In this game, Dwayne Haskins looked like an elite quarterback prospect. He made one jaw-dropping throw after another.
In this game, Dwayne Haskins threw for 499 passing yards and 5 passing touchdowns with an 80% completion percentage. This was a big game for the Ohio State Buckeyes, and Haskins stepped up and delivered in the clutch. Each and every touchdown pass Haskins threw in this game was utterly spectacular. I highly recommend watching Dwayne Haskins’s highlights against Northwestern. You will be impressed.
Ohio State v. Indiana:
Ohio State v. Indiana is an important game while evaluating Haskins for a different reason. This game shows everything there is to love about Dwayne Haskins, but also everything there is to scare someone away.
Statistically, Haskins played a great game. He threw 6 touchdown passes with 455 yards and 2 interceptions. However, after watching the film, Haskins was far from perfect in this game.
In the 1st quarter, with 9:28 remaining, Haskins had a receiver wide open downfield for a walk-in touchdown and missed him. This showed that Haskins needs time to settle down into games. It is one of his biggest weaknesses, which I will touch on later.
It is important to dissect the bad plays as much as the good plays because it shows a player’s limits and what he needs to work on.
With 8:43 left in the 2nd quarter, Haskins threw his first interception. On this play, the cornerback blitzed off the edge, and Haskins got smacked. He got the ball out but due to the hit, the throw was high and inaccurate. Haskins panicked to get the ball out. He should’ve held it, or obviously delivered a more accurate throw. A decrease in accuracy under pressure happened pretty often for Haskins. If he had more time, he could have hit the deep seam for a TD. Haskins needs to recognize blitzes pre-snap, and he usually does, but this one he did not see coming.
His second interception occurred in the 3rd quarter with 3:03 remaining. Again, Haskins was hit as he was throwing, resulting in an interception. Bad things happen when Haskins is under pressure. Time and time again, Haskins’s accuracy and decision making got worse under pressure. These two interceptions also show that Haskins needs to work on increasing the strength of his body so that the ball does not float out of his hand like a wounded duck when he gets hit.
On the flip side, Haskins did have 6 touchdowns in this game. It was not all bad. This was a streaky game from Haskins, but he did flash his high potential.
With 6:55 second left in the 4th quarter, Haskins threw an absolutely perfect pass for a touchdown. The ball traveled about 45 yards through the air before landing perfectly in the receiver’s hands in the back of the end zone. Haskins placed this pass where only his receiver could get it, over his shoulder, right over the defender in a tight window. It was a spectacular play that makes you forget about the miscues in the game and flashes superstar potential.
Ohio State adjusted their offense to fit Dwayne Haskins’s play-style in 2018. Haskins is a pro-style quarterback who operates best from within the pocket. Ohio State recognized this and capitalized on it with their style of offense in 2018. In the NFL, a team will be able to do the same.
1. High Football IQ:
Dwayne Haskins reads defenses extremely well. He always knows where to go with the ball. Haskins reads coverages and knows who will be open and where the ball needs to go. He is also impressive pre-snap, calling protections, reading coverages and communicating with his teammates. Every now and then he blows a protection call, but for the most part, he does a consistently good job recognizing blitzes.
Perhaps the most impressive part of Haskins’s football IQ is his ability to manipulate defenses. Dwayne is so advanced in this part of his game. He moves safeties with his eyes and head fakes like he is an NFL quarterback already. Against Washington in the Rose Bowl, Haskins secured 2 big touchdowns by manipulating the defense’s coverage.
On his first touchdown against Washington, Dwayne stared left to move the single high safety that way, then turned and fired to a wide open wide receiver in the middle. Haskins knew the receiver would get open if he could move the safety over, so he sold the left to the safety and got his wide receiver wide open. On this play, Dwayne Haskins demonstrated great anticipation, field vision, and accuracy on this play, as well as an obviously impressive football IQ.
Here is a breakdown of one impressive, high-IQ play against Washington:
2. Short-To-Intermediate Accuracy:
The short-to-intermediate range is where Dwayne Haskins makes his money. He is consistently accurate in this area. Haskins gets great zip on the ball and always hits his wide receivers in stride for yards after the catch in the short-to-intermediate range.
Ohio State ran a lot of shallow crossers in 2018 to maximize Haskins’s talents. The Giants also run a lot of shallow crossers and quick slants. These are the routes that Haskins is most accurate on.
3. Big-Time Throws:
While my definition of a big-time throw might not be the exact same as Pro Football Focus’s, it is worth noting that a high-ranking, reputable source for player evaluation sees the same thing I see. Dwayne Haskins has the ability to make the clutch, deep passes.
Admittedly, Dwayne Haskins’s deep balls can be quite inconsistent at times, which I will touch on this later. However, he made numerous jaw-dropping passes in 2018. When Haskins is in rhythm and on his game, he makes some incredible throws. Dwayne proved he can go DEEP (60+ yards) in 2018.
Against Northwestern, Haskins threw a deep ball that traveled 60 yards through the air perfectly in stride to a receiver. The accuracy was incredible considering the length of the pass. Haskins had plenty of passes like this in 2018. Again, he could be more consistent, but when Haskins connects on one of his deep balls, it is a thing of beauty.
Dwayne Haskins has shown that he needs to take time to settle into games and get into a rhythm. Sometime Haskins gets flustered in big games or when he has not thrown the ball in a while. When Ohio State is milking the clock for a while, then Haskins needs to throw, he is not as sharp as when he was running the offense.
This also happens coming out of halves or starting the game. Dwayne has shown he needs time to settle in. It would be beneficiary for Haskins if he could come into the game as sharp as possible and not have to work out the inaccuracies and misreads before he reaches his highest playing level.
2. Play Under Pressure:
Dwayne Haskins sometimes loses it under pressure. His accuracy, decision making, and field vision all get worse when pressure comes. Sometimes, Dwayne Haskins get panicky when under pressure, resulting in a forced pass that is way off the mark.
When Haskins has a clean pocket and is in rhythm, he is incredible. According to Pro Football Focus, when not faced with pressure, Haskins threw 43 touchdowns to just five interceptions and had a passer rating of 134.4.
However, when he faces pressure, Haskins does not play nearly as well. Often times, when Haskins is under pressure, the play results in a sack or an errant pass. This is something he will need to work on at the next level.
As detailed up above, Haskins has flashed incredible arm strength and deep accuracy. However, this is not the most consistent part of his game. There were plenty of moments in 2018 where Haskins left deep passes under or overthrown.
This is due in part to Haskins’s mechanics. His footwork is not consistent. Sometimes, his feet are offset, causing the ball to come out awkwardly and inaccurately.
This consistency problem can also be attributed to Haskins’s issues with settling into games. Haskins should not need to settle into games as often as he does. While he is still trying to get settled, Haskins misses passes he would usually hit on target.
In the same game where Haskins threw a perfect 60-yard deep ball (against Northwestern), he also severely underthrew a downfield shot only one possession later. The receiver had no chance of making a play on the ball and Haskins was lucky that the pass was not intercepted.
In 2018, Dwayne Haskins went through a bit of a mid-season slump. After an incredible first 4 weeks, Haskins had his first below-average game in week 5 against Penn State. Haskins seemed shaken by the big-game atmosphere (something he did get better with later on in the season) and played well below the expectations he had set for himself in the first 4 weeks of the season. From week 5 to week 11, Haskins was inconsistent and played below his previously-set standard.
Ohio State clearly recognized that Haskins was in a slump. Against Maryland in week 11, Ohio State switched up its game plan. The team went with a more run-heavy approach in order to take pressure off of Dwayne Haskins. This approach worked and helped get Haskins playing back at his high level. Haskins then went on to have arguably his 3 best games of his career to close out the season, solidifying himself as a 1st round talent.
Dwayne Haskins will be a top 10 pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. The Giants do have the 6th overall pick and they do have the draft capital to move into the top 3 if they so desire. The rumors linking the Giants to Haskins have been cloudy.
Some reports say the Giants have no interest in Haskins and are not even scouting him. Others say they are extremely interested and have done a ton of work on him. It is hard to decipher what is true and what is not at this point.
The Giants might end up drafting a quarterback at 17, but it will not be Dwayne Haskins. Haskins will probably go within in the top 3 picks, and if not, there is no way he makes it out of the top 10. If the Giants love Dwayne Haskins, they will need to be aggressive and go after him in the top 10.