As one of his first orders of business this offseason, Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera brought veteran QB Ryan Fitzpatrick on board to compete for the starting job. Months later, he has an important admission about the state of the position.
In an interview with the Washington Post, Rivera said that Fitzpatrick has the potential to be "the guy" in Washington for a while. He expressed confidence in his other quarterbacks - Taylor Heinicke, Kyle Allen and Steven Montez - but said that the team would give serious consideration to Fitzpatrick if he plays well (or whoever plays well).
“I think for right now, the focus has shifted to shoring up the rest of the positions,” Rivera said. “Again, there’s nothing that says Ryan Fitzpatrick can’t be the guy for a while. If this dude continues to play at the level he has and with Brady showing everybody that these veteran guys can do it — just ask Phil Mickelson, he’ll tell you — then why not? Why would we want to move on?
“At the same time, we have a guy we have confidence in in Taylor, we have confidence in Kyle, and we got a very young player in Steven Montez. So we’re kind of in an interesting position right now.”
“If things go well with Ryan, why wouldn’t we want to bring that guy back? Or if Taylor ends up being the guy, why wouldn’t we want that guy to be the guy for a while?"
Rivera made it clear that Washington is not giving up on finding a franchise quarterback. But he'd prefer to have a guy who can sit behind a veteran and develop.
“Do we want a quarterback of the future? Yeah. Oh, absolutely. And ideally, it’d be a guy that could sit back and watch and you could be patient with him," Rivera said.
Fitzpatrick is coming off two solid years with the Miami Dolphins, during which he went 9-11 as a starter while completing 64-percent of his passes.
He was benched in favor of rookie Tua Tagovailoa in the middle of this past year, and joined Washington as a free agent afterwards.
The Washington Football Team will be Fitzpatrick's ninth NFL team.
Will Ryan Fitzpatrick start all 16 games for them this year?