QB Dwayne Haskins to start Friday, vie to solidify spot on Pittsburgh Steelers' roster

Mike Tannenbaum explains why Steelers will struggle this season. (0:55).
PITTSBURGH -- Dwayne Hakins will play in a football match for the first time since his implosion against the Carolina Panthers in Week 16 2020.

Haskins was competing for a spot on the Steelers roster in Pittsburgh. Coach Mike Tomlin announced Wednesday that Haskins was awarded the starting nod for the Steelers' final preseason match against the Panthers.

Tomlin stated, "Excited to give him an opportunity against Carolina's initial group."

Haskins was successful on 14 of his 28 attempts, gaining 154 yards and two interceptions. Taylor Heinicke replaced him for the final two drives of the fourth quarter. He was released the next day.

In January, the Steelers signed a one year deal for the 2019 first-rounder. He has performed well in preseason. After Mason Rudolph in The Hall of Fame game, Haskins was the second quarterback to play in the game. He also played in the next match against the Philadelphia Eagles. Haskins was successful against the Eagles and completed 16 of 22 passes for 161 yards with a touchdown. He also led three scoring drives.

The Panthers will play their starters on Friday, so Haskins will have his first chance to face a first-string defense during the preseason. Tomlin did not disclose the length of Haskins's stay before Josh Dobbs replaces him.

Tomlin stated that Haskins was just "interested in seeing him play more." "This is fair because everyone gets an opportunity to showcase their skills and we work hard for our relationship to get to know them. We are still new to him, so we give him more exposure and reps.

Rudolph and Ben Roethlisberger won't play Friday, which means Rudolph is almost guaranteed the backup quarterback position.

Tomlin stated that although many "regulars", will not be playing against the Panthers', many offensive linemen will as the group strives to build cohesion.

Although Tomlin originally planned for Najee Harris, a rookie running back, to participate in all four Steelers preseason games (which he did), the coach said that Harris would not be playing Friday.

Tomlin stated that running back Benny Snell will not be playing in the preseason because he was recovering from a lower-body injury. Instead, Tomlin stated that Benny Snell will get the start to "prove he is healthy". Tre Norwood, a rookie running back, will have the opportunity to play nickel while the team continues to audition Mike Hilton replacements.

Tomlin stated that they would move some of these guys to make it easier for others. "... It will not be speculation. These guys will have the opportunity to test their skills, preparedness, and techniques against varsity.