Early Redskins Draft Outlook For 2012
While the season is just getting underway and it is unclear yet where the Redskins will be drafting, it is isn’t too early to start looking at next year’s draft class. Multiple needs for Washington have already been made clear, and we are already beginning to see how the depth of the draft is shaping up.
QB- This isn’t much of a surprise as no one really thinks that Rex Grossman is the answer. The Redskins should look to land one signal caller in the top 3 rounds.
RB- Overall this isn’t a huge need, but it is worth noting that the Redskins running backs have twice in three games failed to rush for over 3.0 yards per carry. I could see a 4th-6th round player being added here.
WR- The Redskins spent three picks on this position last year, but they could still delve into the position if the right player is there. The Redskins need to add size, and another mid-round pick could be used to bolster the position.
OT- This is Washington’s 2nd weakest position after QB. Trent Williams is developing slowly and he might be better suited for the right side. Right tackle Jamaal Brown looks completely overmatched, and already looks to be a huge waste of the 5 year contract the Redskins handed him this offseason. Washington needs to use a pick in the top three rounds (preferably 1st or 2nd) to find another tackle.
OG- Kory Lichtensteiger is looking better this year then last season, but he is hardly a lock at the position. Free agent signing Chris Chester is struggling right now, and might not be the Redskins long term solution at the position. Right now this isn’t as pressing a need as it appeared going into the season, I don’t know if the Redskins can fully count on Lichtensteiger and Chester as their starters, so having a quality backup is key. I’d look to add someone in the 4th-6th round range.
C- Will Montgomery has been pretty solid so far, and is coming off a decent campaign last year. He is a free agent at season’s end, so the Redskins will have to see if his play is worth the price tag. Depth here is also an issue, so this is a position that should be watched. If Montgomery is resigned, it really isn’t a need until late rounds, but if he walks (or is ineffective) then a 2nd-4th pick would make sense.
DE- Stephen Bowen has been a great addition so far at end, but the other spot has been fairly weak with Adam Carriker there. Carriker is even struggling against the run which is supposed to be his strong suit. Given that he is a free agent at seasons end the Redskins might just let him walk. While they have Jarvis Jenkins coming back from injury next year, they need to have a 3rd cog (at least) for their ends to work in the 3-4. It’s not a huge priority, but if they haven’t addressed it by draft time a 4th rounder would make a lot of sense.
NT- Barry Cofield has been a mixed bag so far at NT. And rookie Chris Neild has looked solid, but he doesn’t seem ready to take over a major contributing role just yet (the Redskins could move Cofield to DE and still play him at some NT). Nose tackle is a thin position in the draft, but it could be worth adding one, especially if this team still continues to struggle against the run all season.
ILB- Next to QB and OT, no position is a bigger need going into next season. Both London Fletcher and Rocky McIntosh are impending free agents. Fletcher is likely to resign, but even if he does he might have 2 or 3 years left in the league, and his performance could drop off at any time. Right now the Redskins depth of Lorenzo Alexander and Perry Riley, don’t really look to be starting options. Grabbing a guy who could step in for McIntosh and has the potential to replace Fletcher as the defensive leader down the road is a smart play. There are some talented guys out there so grabbing someone in the top three rounds makes sense.
CB- The Redskins starting corners are solid, but they could look to invest a pick into the position, with so many teams going with three strong WR’s, Washington needs to be able to match-up. I would say a top 4 round investment would be a wise move.
S- LaRon Landry is a free agent and if he leaves SS becomes a huge issue. If he is retained then depth is the only factor here, and it isn’t a crucial issue.
Right now the Redskins apparently have 8 draft picks for next season. While they had a 9th, part of the Tim Hightower deal included a conditional late round pick, which I’m guessing is a 6th rounder. That leaves the Redskins with one pick in every round, plus the Oakland Raiders 4th rounder from the Jason Campbell deal. He’s how I’d like to see the Redskins approach their draft in the first 4 rounds(obviously this is still very subjective):
1st: While it is easy to say QB here, its likely not going to be the best option. The Redskins will probably finish somewhere in the early to mid-teens at worst, meaning that all the top quarterbacks will be off the board. Instead the Redskins should look at OT and ILB as their primary needs for this position. I’d also say that trading back once or twice to the end of the round (or early 2nd) would be wise. The Redskins have a number of needs and could use a couple extra early round picks to address them. By trading back the Redskins can ‘jump ahead’ of any teams who might be thinking QB in the 2nd round and take the best of the bunch, that is still on the board.
2nd: Now this is all dependent on what happens in round 1. But assuming the normal picks, and the Skins grabbed an OT or ILB in round 1 the Redskins should look to take their QB of the future here. It’s a deep QB year and there should still be a couple good options on the board in the 2nd round.
3rd If an offensive tackle hasn’t been taken yet, this is the spot one should go. Otherwise if a ILB falls it could be an option, if not I’d go cornerback or maybe interior lineman.
4th I’d maybe look to add a big receiver here, who has some starting upside in the future and could help in the red zone.
4th: Here I’d look to take the best lineman or ILB (which ever position hasn’t been addressed) or a defensive lineman.