After an impressive playoff appearance, Taylor Heinicke re-signs with the Washington Football Team to a two-year deal worth $8.75 million, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
Taylor Heinicke Re-Signs With Washington Football Team
Heinicke finished his season strong in Washington, despite a 31-23 playoff exit to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In that postseason game, Heinicke threw for 306 yards, a touchdown and an interception. He also had 46 yards rushing and a rushing touchdown.
In the previous week, the Football Team beat the Philadelphia Eagles and released quarterback Dwayne Haskins before their home playoff appearance.
Taylor Heinicke 2021 Outlook
Extending Heinicke gives Washington solid depth and perhaps a surprise QB of the future if he can build on that surprise playoff showing.
However, let’s not get crazy. Heinicke is a journeyman undrafted free agent that has served as a backup for his entire career.
Prior to his impressive playoff start, he had only started one prior career game, which came with the Carolina Panthers in 2018. However, this is the first time Heinicke will remain with a team for consecutive seasons. In his three previous campaigns, he jumped from the Houston Texans to the Panthers before he finally landed with Washington.
Though this likely means Kyle Allen won’t return, the Football Team still carries incumbent Alex Smith, who won the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year. Smith is owed nearly $19 million this season and currently slots in as starter due to that financial commitment.
However, Washington could save $13.6 million in cap space if the organization releases Smith before June 1. Also, he has a noted injury history and is approaching his age-37 season. Those risks make the Heinicke extension worth the price tag.
NFL Draft QB Implications
Since they made the postseason, Washington holds the 19th pick in the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft. Barring something unforeseen, that likely takes them out of the running for this draft’s top quarterback prospects like Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields and Zach Wilson.
They could even be too far back to draft Trey Lance. They may settle for taking a chance on Mac Jones or Kyle Trask instead — if they choose to invest strongly a quarterback.
Washington Football Team Betting Odds/Fantasy Outlook
Heinicke’s extension does not move the needle all too much on betting futures for the Washington Football Team. BetMGM has the Football Team at +3500 to win the NFC. They are +6600 to win the Super Bowl. Certainly a longshot.
Despite the presence of a stacked defense and a competent head coach in Ron Rivera, Heinicke’s extension does not make the Football Team immediate contenders.
However, in an NFC East that is still relatively weak, perhaps look out for future odds on the Football Team to win another divisional title. Of course, the Dallas Cowboys should be primed for a more serious season, especially once they retain Dak Prescott, as is expected.
For fantasy purposes, this extension helps boost confidence in drafting Washington’s Terry McLaurin and Antonio Gibson as viable options for 2021.
Both were reliable at their positions in 2020, even with a blend of Haskins and Smith at quarterback. Heinicke’s presence as the likely backup for the upcoming season bodes well for the production of McLaurin and Gibson even if Smith misses time with an injury.
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