The Washington Football Team may elect to rotate their quarterbacks after all.
Backup Taylor Heinicke received first-team reps in practice on Wednesday, one day after coach Ron Rivera floated the notion of the team rotating its quarterbacks in Saturday’s NFC wild-card game versus the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Heinicke was granted the first-team reps with fellow quarterback Alex Smith limited by a calf strain.
“Tomorrow is going to be a telling day,” Smith said on Wednesday.
Smith returned from a two-game absence because of the injury to lead Washington to a 20-14 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, clinching the NFC East with a 7-9 record. However, Smith’s mobility appeared limited, leaving Rivera to devise an alternate plan for a matchup with the blitz-happy Buccaneers (11-5).
Smith, 36, sports a 5-1 record since taking over as the starter in Week 10. After missing all of 2019 recovering from a leg injury and a life-threatening infection, he has completed 66.7 percent of his passes for 1,582 yards with six touchdowns and eight picks in eight appearances this season.
Heinicke, 27, relieved an ineffective Dwayne Haskins — who summarily has been released — in Washington’s 20-13 loss to the Carolina Panthers on Dec. 27. He completed 12 of 19 passes for 137 yards with one touchdown in that game.