Despite an impressive performance throughout 15 starts last fall, Commanders quarterback Taylor Heinicke has come to the realization that he will once again be relegated to backup duties.
His salary and the salary of presumed starter, Carson Wentz, says as much. Heinicke will earn more than $2 million for the 2022 campaign, and Wentz is slated to bring home between $28-30 million.
“I don’t think that’s an option,” Heinicke said from Washington’s minicamp on Wednesday when asked if he could challenge Wentz to be the team’s top signal caller.
“You look at the NFL and at the end of the day, it’s kind of a business. If you’re paying someone $30 million and you’re paying someone else $2 million — you’re paying this guy $30 million to play, you know,” Heinicke added.
— Around The NFL (@AroundTheNFL) June 16, 2022
After starter Ryan Fitzpatrick was injured in the first half of Washington’s 2021 opener, Heinicke filled in for most of the season, winning seven of his fifteen starts. He compiled 3,419 yards, 20 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.
Washington acquired Wentz via trade in March, putting an obvious end to any thoughts Heinicke had of remaining the starter. “Carson’s a great quarterback and you see it through OTAs and minicamp. And I hope he goes out there and succeeds. And again, my job is just to back him up,” Heinicke said.
He later added: “…If for some reason he goes down, I’m ready to go play. That’s how I look at it. But, again, the NFL’s a business. You’re paying a guy a lot of money, you’re paying him money for a reason. He’s gonna go play.”
Wentz went 9-8 as the starter in Indianapolis last season, throwing for 27 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. He was the second overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.
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