Taylor Heinicke

Taylor Heinicke

Quarterback #8
Team: Washington Redskins
Ht / Wt:6'0" / 198 lb.
College:Old Dominion
Born:March 15, 1993
Drafted:2015 / UDFA

Taylor Heinicke: Signs two-year extension

Heinicke (shoulder) is signing a two-year, $8.75 million extension with the Washington Football Team, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Heinicke signed with the team in December and ended up starting in the opening round of the playoffs. His solid performance (352 total yards, two TDs) in that wild-card loss to Tampa seemingly convinced Washington brass that Heinicke can be a solid backup for the next couple years. He'll turn 28 in April, and it's unlikely this contract prevents the team from seeking upgrades for the starting QB job. Heinicke suffered an AC joint sprain during the playoff game, but he should be ready for the offseason program (if there is one) and training camp.

February 10, 2021 6:56 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Picks up shoulder injury

Heinicke suffered an AC joint sprain during Saturday's 31-23 wild-card loss to the Buccaneers, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Heinicke impressed in his spot start Saturday, completing 26 of 44 passes for 306 yards, a touchdown and an interception and running for 46 yards and a score. It wasn't enough to pull out the win, however, and Heinicke finished the game banged up. The X-Rays came back negative, so his recovery shouldn't take too long. The Old Dominion product will be an unrestricted free agent in March, and he certainly proved that he belongs in the NFL moving forward, even if it's just in a backup role.

January 10, 2021 9:28 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Impresses in spot start

Heinicke completed 26 of 44 passes for 306 yards with one touchdown and one interception in Washington's 31-23 wild-card loss to the Buccaneers on Saturday night. He also rushed six times for 46 yards and another score.

Analysis: Getting game-day call in place of Alex Smith (calf), Heinicke performed admirably against the Buccaneers' aggressive Todd Bowles-coordinated defense. The third-year pro fought through a shoulder issue in the second half, and he worked around two sacks and six quarterback hits overall to keep Washington competitive throughout. Heinicke primarily focused on the trio of Cam Sims, Terry McLaurin and Logan Thomas, which accounted for a combined 18-253 line on 29 targets. It was a highly encouraging showing for Heinicke, who's slated to head into unrestricted free agency this offseason but could certainly be brought back to Washington to compete for a starting job.

January 9, 2021 9:03 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Returns from shoulder injury

Heinicke returned from a shoulder injury during Saturday's wild-card game against the Buccaneers, Nicki Jhabvala of The Washington Post reports.

Analysis: The 27-year-old suffered the injury early in the fourth quarter after taking a couple hits and was labeled questionable to return, but he was able to retake the field after a quick examination in the locker room. Heinicke performed admirably before suffering the injury, completing 16 of 29 passes for 209 yards and one interception while rushing six times for 46 yards and one touchdown.

January 9, 2021 8:06 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Getting spot start Saturday

Heinicke will start Saturday's wild-card game against the Buccaneers, Grant Paulsen of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: With Alex Smith unable to play on his balky right calf, Heinicke will make his second appearance of the campaign. In the first one, Heinicke subbed in for the since jettisoned Dwayne Haskins in Week 16 against the Panthers, completing 12 of 19 passes for 137 yards and one touchdown while turning three carries into 22 yards. Heinicke will have a tougher task on his hands versus a Tampa Bay defense that racked up the fourth-most sacks (48, tied with the Cardinals) this season.

January 9, 2021 4:18 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Likely set to start

Heinicke is expected to start at quarterback with Alex Smith (calf) likely inactive for Washington's wild-card matchup against the Buccaneers on Saturday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.

Analysis: The report suggests Washington opted for Heinicke presumably because the young quarterback provides more mobility than a limited Smith, but in any case the 27-year-old will make his second career start in the most pivotal of circumstances. Steven Montez will act as the backup with Smith likely inactive.

January 9, 2021 1:59 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: May start Saturday

Heinicke has "a real chance" to be Washington's starting quarterback for Saturday's wild-card game against the Buccaneers, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports

Analysis: According to Rapoport, typical starter Alex Smith's right calf remains sore and has yet to loosen up, which contained him to a pair of limited practice sessions this week. On Tuesday, coach Ron Rivera opened the door for Washington to have a rotation at QB, and after Heinicke handled the majority of first-team reps, the Football Team is considering giving him the first shot to direct the offense. Such a decision may not be known until close to Saturday's 8:15 p.m. ET kickoff.

January 8, 2021 9:13 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Taking first-team reps Wednesday

Heinicke kicked off Wednesday's practice taking reps with the first-team offense, Nicki Jhabvala of The Washington Post reports.

Analysis: Meanwhile, Alex Smith (calf) seems set to go down as a non-participant for a second consecutive session. Coach Ron Rivera hasn't ruled out the possibility of incorporating a QB rotation for Saturday's wild-card matchup with Buccaneers, so the fact Heinicke is getting such reps may forecast what is to come this weekend. In his sole appearance of the season Week 16 against the Panthers, Heinicke completed 12 of 19 passes for 137 yards and one touchdown while compiling 22 more yards on three carries.

January 6, 2021 10:28 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Slated for backup role

Heinicke is expected to serve as the backup quarterback in Sunday's game against the Eagles with Alex Smith (calf) on track to start, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: After Dwayne Haskins was benched in last week's loss to the Panthers, Heinicke entered the game and was solid in his first action of the year, completing 63 percent of his passes for 137 yards (7.2 YPA) and a touchdown. However, Smith is set to return to the lineup after clearing the necessary hurdles during the practice week. Smith will be examined once again Sunday before Washington hands down the final verdict, but barring a setback, Heinicke will return to the backup role.

January 2, 2021 9:40 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Takes first-team reps Wednesday

Heinicke worked with the first-team offense at Wednesday's practice, Rhiannon Walker of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Meanwhile, Alex Smith did some mobility drills on the side field as he attempts to recover from a strained right calf. After cutting Dwayne Haskins on Monday, coach Ron Rivera will have to make a decision between Smith and Heinicke for the start under center Sunday in Philadelphia, and so far Heinicke seems to have the clearest path to the job this weekend. Having said that, Rivera has expressed optimism that Smith will be available, so his activity level bears watching as the week goes on.

December 30, 2020 10:54 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Earns No. 2 role

Coach Ron Rivera said Monday that Heinicke will start Week 17 if Alex Smith (calf) can't go, Rhiannon Walker of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Heinicke replaced a moribund Dwayne Haskins for Washington's final two drives of last Sunday's 20-13 loss to the Panthers, throwing for 137 yards and a touchdown while avoiding any turnovers. Rivera hinted that Smith could be trending in the right direction for Week 17, but Heinicke would be in line to suit up in Philadelphia if the 36-year-old veteran remains sidelined.

December 28, 2020 7:58 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Replaces Haskins after halftime

Heinicke completed 12 of 19 passes for 137 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 20-13 loss to Carolina.

Analysis: With Dwayne Haskins benched for the final two drives, Heinicke took his first regular-season snaps since 2018, facing the team for which he last played. His stat line could've been even better if not for a couple mistakes by Washington pass catchers, though Heinicke did get lucky on a dropped interception. Ron Rivera praised Heinicke's performance, but the coach didn't say which QB will get the start Week 17 if Alex Smith (calf) still isn't ready.

December 27, 2020 6:59 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Bumps to active roster

Washington promoted Heinicke to the active roster from the practice squad Saturday, Rhiannon Walker of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Heinicke is set to serve as the top backup to Dwayne Haskins during Sunday's game against the Seahawks. He signed with Washington early December as an an emergency "quarantine quarterback," and has spent much of his time with the team attending meetings virtually while remaining away from facilities.

December 19, 2020 9:07 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: To join Washington practice squad

Washington intends to sign Heinicke to its practice squad if he can pass the six-day pre-entry COVID-19 testing program, Nicki Jhabvala of The Washington Post reports.

Analysis: Likely spooked by last week's situation in Denver, as none of the Broncos' quarterbacks were available after all coming in contact with a teammate who tested positive for COVID-19, Washington plans to keep Heinicke away from the facility as an emergency "quarantine quarterback". He'll like take part in virtual meetings to familiarize himself with the game plan but will remain physically distanced from the facility so he can safely remain eligible to play in the event of an outbreak.

December 2, 2020 12:42 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Heading to XFL

Heinicke signed a contract with the St. Louis BattleHawks of the XFL on Friday, Kevin Seifert of ESPN.com reports.

Analysis: The 26-year-old appeared in six games for the Panthers last season but was unable to earn a spot on the 53-man roster this season, as Kyle Allen and rookie Will Grier worked as the backup options to the now-injured Cam Newton (foot). Heinicke completed 35 of 57 passes for 320 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions in 2018, but he'll now have a chance to showcase himself in the new iteration of the XFL.

November 22, 2019 9:02 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Let go by Carolina

Heinicke was cut by the Panthers on Friday, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports.

Analysis: Heinicke backed up Cam Newton (foot) for most of the 2018 season. He made one start before suffering a season-ending hyper extended elbow, Week 16 versus the Falcons, when he completed 33 of 55 passes for 274 yards, one touchdown (the first of his career) and three interceptions. He wasn't able to beat out Kyle Allen and rookie third-round pick Will Grier this offseason, and will now look for a gig elsewhere in the league.

August 30, 2019 10:09 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Taking first-team reps in OTAs

Heinicke was the first quarterback to take reps in team drills Wednesday, Bryan Strickland of the Panthers' official site reports.

Analysis: Heinicke served as Cam Newton's (shoulder) backup most of last season, but it was actually Kyle Allen -- who started Week 17 when both Heinicke and Newton were out -- who took the first QB reps during the opening day of OTAs on Tuesday. With third-round rookie Will Grier also in the mix, the competition for the No. 2 QB job in Carolina could be a fluid situation all offseason.

May 22, 2019 11:57 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Re-signs with Panthers

Heinicke (elbow) signed a one-year contract with the Panthers on Tuesday, Jourdan Rodrigue reports.

Analysis: Heinicke was a restricted free agent, and now re-ups with Carolina to compete with Kyle Allen (shoulder) for the No. 2 gig behind Cam Newton (shoulder) in 2019. The 25-year-old started Week 16 against the Falcons last season, and led the Panthers' offense to a touchdown on the game's opening drive, the first touchdown pass of his career. Heinicke then sustained and played through a season-ending hyperextended elbow, ending the day having completed 33-of-55 passes for 274 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions.

March 12, 2019 12:17 PM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Upcoming restricted free agent

Heinicke is a restricted free agent this offseason, which gives the Panthers the right of first refusal.

Analysis: In essence, other organizations can sign Heinicke to an offer sheet, but the Panthers will have a chance to examine the contract and decide whether to match it. Since going undrafted in 2015, he's bounced around the NFL, eventually settling in as the direct backup to Cam Newton last season. When Newton was shut down after Week 15 due to a lingering shoulder injury, Heinicke made one start before suffering a season-ending hyperextended elbow. That performance (33 of 53 for 274 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions against the Falcons) apparently was enough to make coach Ron Rivera content with the state of the Panthers' QB room. "I was pleased with what Taylor did for us, as with Kyle (Allen)," Rivera said last week at the combine. "I feel really good about our depth."

March 7, 2019 10:55 AM EST

Taylor Heinicke: Undergoes surgery Thursday

Heinicke (elbow) posted on his Twitter account Thursday that he's undergone successful surgery.

Analysis: It was initially reported that Heinicke would not require surgery for his hyperextended elbow, but it appears that he did require a procedure of some sort. That addition could put his status in jeopardy for the start of OTAs. Even if he doesn't make it back for the start of the offseason, Heinicke is expected to serve as the top backup again in 2019.

January 3, 2019 12:16 PM EST

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