Ryan fitzpatrick may indeed be the starting quarterback in Washington. However, coach Ron Rivera has yet to say so. He stopped before making Fitzpatrick the first week starter when he spoke to reporters on Saturday.
“You know, we don’t play for 21 days,” Rivera said. “Whenever it’s time to say it, I say it. Every time we take out the first depth chart, you’ll see it. For now, this is not important. The important thing is that we keep working and preparing and preparing and everyone is competing. Whether it’s you know, done or not, I just think, you know, we are caught up in something right now that is not as important as practicing, developing, learning and doing the things the right way.
Fitzpatrick, in his first year with the team, is still learning to adapt to his new teammates.
“When you watch the tape and you see these things, more than anything, it’s a little more the feeling that develops between him and the receivers,” Rivera said of Fitzpatrick. “He’s anticipating something different from the receiver and the receiver has done something opposite. So it’s just a matter of working, refining, having a good idea. I like the decision. Unfortunately he threw it too far in front of Logan [Thomas] twice. Once for the first down, the other time for a touchdown. He had adam [Humphries], I like the decision, once. He has just knocked down Adam in the middle. He led Dyami [Brown] just a little too much. He had Adam humphries, he thought Adam was going to face and Adam felt that because the guy squared him he had to go and pivot back. So again, it just becomes a little bit more of a feeling and understanding of each other. There are a lot of natural things that happen. If there’s anything I would say about Ryan that I would wonder about, it’s in practice every now and then and he’ll try to force the ball.
Reading between the lines, there might be a little opening for Taylor Heinecke. Even with Fitzpatrick in the first week’s job, it’s worth paying attention to what he’s doing. As good as he can be, Fitzpatrick is prone to periodic lapses. If / when he has one in Washington, Rivera can start thinking about Plan B.