Collins Hill grad Taylor Heinicke’s NFL career is more secure thanks to an impressive finish last season.

The quarterback agreed to a two-year contract extension worth $8.75 million with the Washington Football Team, according to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport. The deal reportedly includes incentives depending on how many games he starts.

Heinicke was a restricted free agent after finishing the 2020 season with Washington.

“It’s a good feeling,” Heinicke told Washington senior vice president of media and content Julie Donaldson on Wednesday. “Everyone knows I was at home taking math classes ... so for this contract to come, it’s a big sigh of relief. I’m really excited. This is the place I wanted to be, so everything came together pretty smoothly, and I’m really excited to be back.”

Heinicke, 27, was out of the NFL after being cut by the Carolina Panthers prior to the 2019 season and played in the XFL in 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the league’s inaugural season. He signed with Washington’s practice squad last December, reuniting with his former Carolina head coach Ron Rivera. He was finishing up an engineering degree at Old Dominion, but put that on hold when the NFL called.

Heinicke finished off a Week 16 game against the Panthers by completing 12 of 19 passes for 137 yards and a touchdown, which earned him a start in Washington’s Wild Card game against Tampa Bay. He drew national attention with his gutsy effort in the playof game, completing 26 of 44 passes for 306 yards and a touchdown and diving for a rushing TD at the pylon that was a widespread highlight. Washington lost 31-23 to the eventual Super Bowl champs, but Heinicke made a statement.

Heinicke spent time previously with the Minnesota Vikings, the New England Patriots, the Houston Texans and the Panthers after a record-breaking career at Old Dominion, where he threw for 14,959 yards and accounted for 154 TDs (132 passing, 22 rushing). He threw for 4,218 yards and 44 TDs as a Collins Hill senior in 2010, earning Daily Post Offensive Player of the Year honors for a team that reached the state semifinals.

Sports Editor for the Gwinnett Daily Post and Regional Sports Director for Southern Community Newspapers, Inc. A Gwinnett native documenting Gwinnett County sports with the GDP since 1997.

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