Retired Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger Tributes Dwayne Haskins After His Death

by Suzanne Halliburton
Nick Cammett/Getty Images

Ben Roethlisberger and Dwayne Haskins were teammates for only a few months. But when the now-retired Roethlisberger learned the devastating news that Haskins had died Saturday, he wanted the football world to know the passionate player who sat with him in the Steelers QB room each day.

Maybe to help with his own grief, Ben Roethlisberger wrote an open letter to Dwayne Haskins, aka “D-Hask.” And the letter was more eulogy than private letter to a friend. Other stars across the NFL had similar reactions.

Ben Roethlisberger Said Dwayne Haskins Had a “Zeal for Life”

Roethlisberger wrote. “I only had the privilege of knowing D-Hask for a short time. But in that time I got to meet a young man that didn’t seem to ever have a bad day. He came to work every day with a smile on his face and energy and love in his heart. I really enjoyed his passion and love for the game and wanting to learn more and be the best.

“His smile and zeal for life will be missed! Wish we had more time together on this earth, but I will cherish the time and the laughs we had! I’ll say it again just like I told it to your face, I still wish I could throw a ball like you! Love ya pal.

“To his wife Kalabrya, we want you to know we are praying for you and with you. We don’t understand why God does what he does, but we have to trust and believe in his plan. You are an amazing woman of faith and trust you will get through this.

Love Ben and Ashley”

Haskins Died After Being Hit By Dump Truck Near Airport

Haskins died early Saturday. The Florida Highway Patrol said it happened around 6:40 a.m. Haskins was trying to cross a highway near the Fort Lauderdale airport. A dump truck hit Haskins, who was pronounced dead at the scene. The traffic accident shut down that stretch of an eight-lane highway for hours. Soon, word broke that Haskins had been killed.

Haskins, 24, had been in South Florida as a guest of Mitch Trubisky. Some of the other Pittsburgh Steelers skilled players were there as well. The unofficial training camp was equal parts workout and bonding session. Ben Roethlisberger retired in the offseason, so Dwayne Haskins was competing against Trubisky and Mason Rudolph for the starting job.

(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

Haskins was hoping he could be an NFL starting QB again. He starred for one season at Ohio State, finishing third in the Heisman Trophy race behind winner Kyler Murray and runner-up Tua Tagovailoa. Washington selected Haskins with the 15th pick of the 2019 NFL draft. The choice seemed like an obvious one since Haskins went to high school in Maryland. He almost was a hometown kid. But Haskins struggled with inefficient play and off-field woes. Washington cut him after two seasons after compiling a 3-10 record as a starter,

Haskins signed with the Steelers for the 2021 season and found new life. As the third-string QB, he was only active for one game. Still, he felt he had the talent to earn the starting job. That’s why he was away from his wife last week, spending time with his teammates as they worked in the Florida sunshine. Police believe he was headed to the airport to catch a plane back home when he died.