Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Dwayne Haskins died Saturday morning after being hit by a dump truck while walking on a South Florida highway. Haskins was 24 years old.
Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Lt. Indiana Miranda confirmed the crash on Interstate 595 westbound. Haskins was pronounced dead at the scene.
Miranda didn’t say why Haskins was on the freeway. The accident caused the closure of the highway for several hours.
“He was walking down the highway and got hit,” Miranda told The Associated Press.
Haskins was training in South Florida with other Steelers quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers.
“I am devastated and at a loss for words with the unfortunate passing of Dwayne Haskins,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said in a statement. “He quickly became part of our Steelers family upon his arrival in Pittsburgh and was one of our hardest workers, both on the field and in our community. Dwayne was a great teammate, but more so a friend. great for so many people. I am truly heartbroken.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Kalabrya, and all of his family during this difficult time.”
After a stellar 2018 season at Ohio State, Haskins was selected 15th overall by Washington Commanders in the 2019 draft.
Haskins spent two turbulent seasons with Washington before signing for Pittsburgh before last season.
“We are devastated to hear the news of the tragic passing of Dwayne Haskins Jr.,” Commanders owners Daniel and Tanya Snyder said in a statement. “He was a young man with enormous potential and an infectious personality. To say we are heartbroken is an understatement. Our hearts and prayers go out to Dwayne’s family members and all who knew him and the loved.”
“Dwayne was a talented young man who had a long life ahead of him,” Commanders coach Ron Rivera said in a statement. “It’s a very sad time and I’m honestly at a loss for words. I know I speak for the rest of our team in saying he will be sorely missed. Our entire team sends our deepest condolences, thoughts and our prayers to the Haskins family at this time.”
Haskins played 15 games over two seasons with Washington, compiling a total QBR of 29.4 – the league average during that span was 63.5. He threw 12 touchdown passes for 14 interceptions.
Haskins’ time in Washington began somewhat contentiously, as scouts and coaches pressed against him with the 15th pick — but Snyder wanted him. Haskins was a big local name, having played for three seasons at Bullis High School in Potomac, Maryland.
Haskins started seven games in his rookie year and the first four games the following season, but was benched after a 30-10 loss to Baltimore. Haskins was released by Washington later that season and was not claimed on waivers. He signed a reserve/future contract with Pittsburgh in January 2021.
Saying he was touched by the decision, Haskins stressed that he was eager to work hard and absorb as much as he could from Ben Roethlisberger and Mason Rudolph. He made the roster as a third string but only dressed once, serving as a substitute in a tie with Detroit after Roethlisberger was placed on COVID-19 protocol the day before the match.
In response to the news of Haskins’ death, Rudolph just tweeted“Devastated.”
Steelers linebacker TJ Watt remembered Haskins as an “optimistic guy”.
The world lost a great person today. When Dwayne first walked into the locker room, I could tell he was an optimistic guy. He always made people smile, never taking life for granted. His impact on me will last forever.
-TJ Watt (@_TJWatt) April 9, 2022
Both Tomlin and general manager Kevin Colbert praised Haskins for his improvement since joining the team, and the Steelers re-signed him to a one-year deal as a restricted free agent in March. . He had to compete with Rudolph and Mitch Trubisky for a place.
“We’re excited to see what Dwayne can bring, either from the competition or maybe evolving as a starter,” Colbert said in January.
Haskins had his greatest success on the court at Ohio State. After spending his first two seasons behind JT Barrett, Haskins beat Joe Burrow to be the Buckeyes’ starting quarterback heading into the 2018-19 season.
Haskins supported the decision of the Ohio State coaching staff in delivering perhaps the greatest passing season in program history. He set single-season Big Ten records for passing yards (4,831), touchdown passes (50) and total offensive yards (4,939), in addition to a total of 28 school records .
The banner year led to Haskins being named a Heisman Trophy finalist and third-team AP All-American.
In his final game as a Buckeye, Haskins threw for three touchdowns and 251 yards in a Rose Bowl win over Washington.
“The loss of Dwayne is beyond tragic and extremely difficult to process,” said current Ohio State coach Ryan Day, who was Haskins’ position coach as well as coach – interim leader of the Buckeyes in 2018. posted on Twitter. “To those who knew him closely, he was so much more than a great football player. He had a giant heart, an old soul and an infectious smile. The Ohio State community and all of our football program are heartbroken.”
Leader. Legend. Always a Buckeye. pic.twitter.com/yxwaIewN9V
— Ohio State Football (@OhioStateFB) April 9, 2022
The school also published a statement“The Ohio State Department of Athletics is terribly saddened to learn of the passing of Dwayne Haskins on Saturday morning. We are thinking of the entire Haskins family during this most difficult time. Our prayers go out to the family, as well as his current and former teammates, coaches, friends and relatives.”
“Heartbroken to learn of the loss of Dwayne Haskins Jr.”, former Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer tweeted Saturday. “My thoughts and prayers go out to his amazing family. One of the greatest QBs in Ohio State history, but an even better son, teammate and friend. God bless you!”
Information from John Keim of ESPN and The Associated Press was used in this report.