The Washington Football team snuck their way into the playoffs in 2020 with a ferocious defense despite major concerns at QB. This led many media outlets to project the Football Team taking a QB in the 2021 draft as most saw them as a QB away from being true competitors in the NFC. This is not the course of action that Washington took, and as such the Football Team is left facing a QB battle between 3 rather interesting options: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Taylor Heinicke, and Kyle Allen.
Ryan Fitzpatrick: A proven NFL veteran and journeyman QB, Ryan has the most experience of the bunch and we know what kind of QB Fitzpatrick is. Ryan has been given 2 very realistic nicknames that he fluctuates between quite often in his career, “Fitzmagic” and “Fitztragic.” This is generally due to his general insecurities with moving beyond his first read and forcing it to the read even if it’s not there. However, Fitzpatrick still finds success despite this due to his innate accuracy and ability to make tighter throws. In fact, Fitzpatrick on tight and closing throws threw an accurate ball at a 10% higher accuracy rate than the average NFL QB.
While there are concerns about Ryan’s aging, he is coming off 3 of the best years of his career, and while he may not be the most consistent QB option he is the most experienced and proven.
Taylor Heinicke: Taylor started 2 games for the Washington Football Team last season and performed admirably but it was on a very small sample size. In addition, some of his best play was on 3rd downs and under pressure which is very difficult to maintain from year to year. However, Heinicke showed off elite accuracy, playmaking ability, and instincts. He has some weaknesses when it comes to some overthrowing issues and struggles in the short passing game, but these are some kinks that could be pretty easily worked out with a little more experience.
While some of his play is primed for regression, if he maintains even 75% of the play that he had in the 2020 season, he deserves a serious chance at the starting job.
Kyle Allen: Probably the clear 3rd in the race right now, Kyle Allen has shown he can be a quality backup QB. Allen may get an advantage in the race as he has by far the most experience in Rivera’s scheme, but I doubt he gets the job. He has shown the base ability to execute an offense and he probably has the highest floor when it comes to the QB options. In his time in Washington to this point, he has nearly halved his bad throw percentage while increasing his accurate throw percentage to 81.
Allen has shown distinct improvement in 2020 but will it be enough to win the starting job?
In my personal opinion, the day 1 starter for the Washington Football Team should be Taylor Heinicke. With an opportunity for elite play out of him, that is potentially lacking in the other options, I do not see any reason why he shouldn’t be the clear-cut option here. Behind him, both Fitzpatrick and Allen have a legit claim to the backup job, but, simply due to experience, I feel that Fitzpatrick is the guy that this team should want to mentor Heinicke from the sideline.