It’s now official. On Tuesday, the Washington Football Team announced that quarterbacks Taylor Heinicke and Kyle Allen were unable to test out of COVID-19 protocols. With that, journeyman Garrett Gilbert will start tonight against the Eagles.
Gilbert, recently signed off of the Patriots’ taxi squad, started for the Cowboys last year in a Week 9 loss to the Steelers. Filling in for Dak Prescott (injured) and Andy Dalton (on the COVID list), Gilbert went 21-of-38 for 243 yards, one touchdown, and one interception. It wasn’t a particularly memorable performance, but it was at least better than what the Cowboys were getting out of Ben DiNucci.
The 30-year-old passer has dressed for just seven games in his NFL career. This will be his biggest one yet as Washington fights for a playoff spot. A win tonight would give them a 43% chance of qualifying; a loss would require them to win out and get extremely lucky.
Washington has been able to activate a couple of its players for tonight’s game — cornerback Troy Apke and defensive tackle Tim Settle. Beyond that, they’ll elevate four practice squaders: fullback Alex Armah, linebacker De’Jon Harris, tackle David Steinmetz, and quarterback Kyle Shurmur, who will serve as the QB2 behind Gilbert.