Washington Redskins starting quarterback Dwayne Haskins (ankle) has been ruled out for the regular season finale against the Dallas Cowboys, interim coach Bill Callahan announced Monday.
Haskins suffered the injury on the first offensive play of the second half during Sunday's 41-35 overtime loss to the New York Giants. He limped off the field, then was carted into the locker room before returning to the sidelines to watch the remainder of the contest.
Haskins said in his postgame press conference that he wanted to go back into the game but that the team doctors would not allow him to. When asked about his availability for the Week 17 divisional matchup, Haskins said, "I want to play. If I can, I will."
However, Callahan said Haskins is dealing with a high ankle sprain and that his recovery will likely take a few weeks. That means his promising rookie campaign is now over.
"I think just in the last few weeks he's taken a great jump progressing through his reads a lot quicker and faster. His footwork and fundamentals have improved," Callahan said. "I think anytime you're the starter, your attention to details rises to a certain level and it gets higher and it gets heightened and that's what I felt about his play in the last few weeks. You can see that across the field, on tape, see it in the building. Those are real positive traits going forward for him."
Haskins' final statistics are as followed: 58.6 completion percentage, 1,365 passing yards, seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. But the numbers do not accurately portray the growth the first-round pick has shown towards the end of his rookie campaign.
Three of his seven interceptions came in his NFL debut against the Giants on Sept. 29, when he was thrust into the starting role in place of Case Keenum in the second quarter. About a month later, Haskins replaced an injured Keenum and threw another interception.
Haskins was eventually named the starting quarterback ahead of the Redskins' Week 9 matchup in Buffalo, and he's performed much better in the games since. In his seven-career NFL starts, the 15th overall pick has thrown for seven scores compared to three interceptions. He also led the Redskins to a pair of victories over Detroit and Carolina.
His past two starts ended in close divisional defeats, but Haskins was playing the best football of his young career before leaving the Giants game with an ankle injury. He was named NFL Rookie of the Week for his performance against the Philadelphia Eagles, which included career highs in passing yards (261) and passer rating (121.3).
He then carved up the Giants' inexperienced secondary to the tune of 12 of 15 passing for 133 yards and two scores. Had he played the entire second half, another career day appeared imminent.
"The start that he had in the game yesterday was very impressive," Callahan said. "Unfortunately, he didn't have the chance or the opportunity to finish that game. I thought he was getting hot. I thought that he had a great feel for the game, the right reads, he sped through the progressions well, he found the openings very easily. I thought the game came to him very naturally, and that's where we've been going with his progress."
Haskins' injury is unfortunate considering he looked more comfortable and confident in the pocket than he has all season long. But he is the quarterback of the future, and right now it's imperative he makes a full recovery before re-assuming football activities. After all, he's already given the organization and the fan base reasons to be optimistic moving forward.
"He still has a longs way to go," Callahan said, "but there was a real, real positive in his development and in his growth."