Ron Rivera: We’ll have to see who starts if Alex Smith can’t play

The Washington Football Team failed to capitalize on an opportunity to win the NFC East on Sunday by losing 20-13 to the Panthers and they’ll need to win against the Eagles in Week 17 in order to extend their season.

It’s unclear who will start at quarterback in that game. Alex Smith missed his second straight game with a calf injury and Dwayne Haskins was benched in favor of Taylor Heinicke in the second half of the game.

Washington head coach Ron Rivera said after the game that he considered pulling Haskins in the first half, but waited to see how he’d respond after halftime. He said “the sum of the parts” of Haskins going 14-of-28 for 154 yards and two interceptions led to the move. He did not say what will happen if Smith is unable to play next weekend.

“We’ll have to see,” Rivera said when asked about that choice, via Sam Fortier of the Washington Post.

Heinicke was 12-of-19 for 137 yards and a touchdown.

Rivera said he reminded the team that they control their path to the playoffs because a win against the Eagles in Week 17 makes them the division champs. If their quarterback play isn’t better than it was on Sunday, that might prove to be a bridge too far for them to travel.