Washington Redskins' multi-million dollar quarterback mess

The near $7 million dollars the Washington Redskins will be paying fired head coach Jay Gruden to sit on the sidelines now shies in comparison to what they are paying quarterbacks to sit on the bench.

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First-round draft pick Dwayne Haskins has been riding the bench for the winless DC NFL franchise, with a four-year, $14.4 million contract that includes an $8.5 million signing bonus. But that is only the tip of the old iceberg for this Titanic-like team. According to NFL salary cap expert Joel Corry, the team is facing a bill of $31 million over the next two years to pay injured quarterback Alex Smith. Colt McCoy who started in Sunday’s defeat to the New England Patriots is getting paid $2.8 million while the quarterback he replaced, Case Keenum is owed $7 million – but some good news there for the ‘Skins – the Denver Broncos are splitting the salary as the result of an offseason trade.

So to tally up the score: the Dan Snyder owned squad is paying more than $50 million for two quarterbacks who aren’t playing (albeit one still is not able to walk on the field) and have paid two other signal callers just under $10 million to lead the team to an 0-5 record. That comes to about $2 million a loss.

Desperate times call for desperate measures – beyond firing the head coach.

"This could possibly open the door for Haskins to start,” Mike Tannenbaum, former general manager of the New York Jets, told FOX Business.

"This could possibly open the door for Haskins to start."

- Mike Tannenbaum, former general manager of the New York Jets

Rumors have circled in recent days that Gruden, who coached the team since 2014, wasn’t in favor of the selection of Haskins and that the decision to draft the quarterback came from well above his head. Perhaps that divide in the war room during the draft played into the limited time on the field for Haskins so far this rookie season.

Dwayne Haskins #7 of the Washington Redskins looks on while sitting on the bench next to offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell and Case Keenum #8 against the Chicago Bears during the second half at FedExField on September 23, 2019 in Landover, Maryla

Haskins was selected No. 15 overall, the third quarterback taken in April’s NFL Draft. He made his NFL debut on Sept. 29, entering in the second half of an ugly loss at the New York Giants.


This year, Forbes ranked the Washington Redskins as the No. 14 most valuable sports team in the world and the No. 5 ranked NFL team valued at $3.1 billion. A winless season which could lead to a drop in attendance or a loss of sponsors could impact the value of the team.