Dec 12, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA;  Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera (M) looks on from the sidelines against the Dallas Cowboys at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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Ron Rivera: Washington’s starting QB to depend on Tuesday testing

Washington Football Team coach Ron Rivera said Garrett Gilbert will start Tuesday night in Philadelphia unless one of the team’s top two quarterbacks can pass a COVID-19 test in time.

Appearing on his radio show on 106.7 The Fan, Rivera said Taylor Heinicke and Kyle Allen will be tested twice on Tuesday — once in the morning and again in the early afternoon. If one or the other tests negative, he could rush to join the team in Philadelphia to face the Eagles at 7 p.m. ET.

Washington (6-7) and Philadelphia (6-7) have until 4 p.m. ET to activate players from the reserve/COVID-19 list.

As of Tuesday morning, the Eagles had two players on the list and Washington had 17.

Gilbert, 30, has not appeared in a game this season. He made his NFL debut with Rivera’s Carolina Panthers in 2018 and made his only previous start last season for the Dallas Cowboys in a Week 9 loss to Pittsburgh, 24-19.

“Garrett played for us in Carolina,” Rivera said Tuesday. “He actually played in a couple of games. He has a lot of familiarity with what we do, so he came back and picked everything back up right away. Last year, if you watched the Cowboys-Pittsburgh game, he came in and played a heck of a game in a loss. They almost won. He’s a very steady quarterback. He has good arm strength, can make all the throws. So we’ve got good familiarity with him.”

Heinicke, 28, has passed for 2,931 yards with 19 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in 13 games (12 starts) this season.

Allen, 25, completed 4 of 9 passes for 53 yards in the Week 14 loss to the Cowboys.

–Field Level Media

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