Ok. It isn’t too often we at Blind Owl Blogs cover extremely heavy topics like premature death. And before I go into this, I just want to say that I am fully against young people dying.
That being said, I understand that death happens. Sometimes to older people, and unfortunately it does happen to young people. Whether it be due to a long illness, a mental health problem or a just a freak accident, there are people that otherwise shouldn’t have died that do pass away.
The reason we are venturing into this is because of the death of former Ohio State standout and Pittsburgh Steeler quarterback Dwayne Haskins. Apparently, Haskins was struck by a vehicle in South Florida last night or early this morning. That is incredibly sad. He was only 24 years old.
I, like a lot of football fans, got the news from ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Twitter. Here is the tweet from Schefter announcing Haskins’ death: “Dwayne Haskins, a standout at Ohio State before struggling to catch on with Washington and Pittsburgh in the NFL, died this morning when he got hit by a car in South Florida, per his agent Cedrick Saunders. Haskins would have turned 25 years old on May 3.”
Like many of you, I saw nothing wrong with the tweet. I read it, then went off to the Google machine to find out more. Then a few hours later I’m reading tweets from people like Lamar Jackson calling Schefter out. Jackson said, “@AdamSchefter you lame asf all around grown ass man and can look in the mirror and smile at yourself.”
Well, I was quite confused. So I went to Schefter’s Twitter feed and found that he had deleted the original tweet. I had to go find it in screenshot form to really analyze it and figure out what pissed Lamar Jackson and others off. It turns out that the line, “...before struggling to catch on with Washington and Pittsburgh in the NFL…” was what folks had problems with.
I kind of get it. Was it completely necessary to put that Haskins struggled in the NFL in the tweet announcing his death? No, not really. But it wasn’t like Schefter tweeted, “Dwayne Haskins, who was a complete NFL bust and sucks, got run over by a car.” He didn’t even make a comment about Haskins’ play. He just said that he didn’t “catch on” in the NFL.
Listen, I get that people are emotional about this. It hasn’t been a full day since the poor guy died. So I understand the reaction to the tweet. But let’s not pretend like this was a hateful act. Schefter just wrote what people would know Haskins from. It clearly wasn’t malicious and him deleting it quickly was proof that it wasn’t meant that way.
Quite honestly the more tone deaf headline I saw was from Steelers Depot. I saw this on my original Google search to get some more details on Haskins death:
That was still live and active just an hour or so ago. I just clicked on it now, and it has since been deleted. Probably a good move.
But back to Schefter’s tweet. People need to realize that just because somebody tragically passed away doesn’t mean what they’re known for goes away. And I think it’s the responsibility of reporters like Schefter to say things like that. Now, there is a respectful way to do it, and I think he did that. He made no comment on the player, he just said he failed to click. That’s the most positive way to say “he wasn’t very good” that I can think of. I even saw a few people saying that Schefter only said this because he went to Michigan and Haskins went to Ohio State. That’s just absurd.
And let’s face it, after the original shock settles down, his lack of success in the NFL is what Haskins will be known for. Like it or not, he was a bust by any metric.