Players the Redskins Should Be Watching In the Senior Bowl: Offense
Logan Thomas, Virginia Tech (North):
-Quarterback is obviously not a pressing need for the Redskins, but if they look to move Kirk Cousins this offseason they could be looking for a developmental back-up QB. That is a title that fits Thomas well. He’s got the size and arm strength that you covet, and he can run the ball as well which is an added bonus, but he’s lacking in just about every other area. He holds on to the ball too long, has sloppy footwork, and lacks touch on his passes. His draft range is all over the place, but if the Skins trade Cousins and Thomas slips to the 5th round range he could be a nice developmental pick-up.
Jerick McKinnon, Georgia Southern (South):
-McKinnon played in a triple option attack at Georgia Southern and was used both as a runner and quarterback. He has back-to-back 1,000 yard seasons, and shows really nice explosion. In his game against Florida he had 125 yards on just 9 carries. McKinnon showed nice rushing ability this week, and can be viewed as a speed back with potential. Coming from an option system and small school there is a good chance he doesn’t get drafted, which could make him a great priority free agent pick-up for the Redskins. There are better running backs down here in Mobile, but the Skins might not want to use any draft picks to upgrade their depth this season. McKinnon would be a guy who could allow them to do that.
Arthur Lynch, Georgia (South):, Crockett Gilmore, Colorado State (South):, C.J. Fiedorowicz, Iowa (North): , Jacob Pedersen, Wisconsin (North)
-This is a really deep group down here at the Senior Bowl, with four quality tight ends. The Redskins are going to need a 2nd tight end to go along with Jordan Reed, and hopefully one who can be a strong blocker in addition to a quality receiver. Logan Paulsen has been very streaky in his Redskins career, and last season took a big step back in both receiving and blocking, so an upgrade could be needed. Fiedorowicz clearly had the best week of this bunch, but all four tight ends fit the bill of an inline tight end, with some pass catching ability. None of these guys will go too high in the draft and should for the most part be taken in that 4th-5th round range. Gilmore is a guy who could slip into that 6th round and would be a cheaper option for the Redskins. He came in late as an injury replacement, but has been impressive in limited work (also had a strong week at the Shrine Game).
Jordan Matthews, Vanderbilt (South): , Ryan Grant, Tulane (South):, Cody Hoffman, BYU (South):, Michael Campanaro, Wake Forrest (North), Jeff Janis, Saginaw Valley State (North): Robert Herron, Wyoming (North)
-Unfortunately this position has been decimated by injuries and a number of interesting guys for the Redskins (Jared Abbrederis, Josh Huff, Shaq Evans, Kain Colter) all had to pull out of practice this week and won’t be able to play. The best option of this group playing (or in general) is Jordan Matthews. He could go in the first round, but in a deep WR class could easily slide. He’s got really nice size and an incredible work ethic that makes him one of the safer picks in the draft. If the Redskins go WR in the 2nd round and he’s there, he’s polished enough to produce as a rookie. Two guys to really keep an eye onare Michael Campanaro who is your classic slot receiver/punt returner. He’s got great quickness and runs really crisp routes. He probably won’t go before the 5th round in this deep draft and would be a really nice pick-up. Jeff Janis is another late round guy to watch. He’s a small school kid, who has more than held his own this week. He’s not the fastest receiver out there, but he’s got nice size, hands and runs good routes to get separation. He is probably a 6th or 7th round guy, and could be a nice developmental WR.
Morgan Moses, Virginia (South):, Zack Martin (Notre Dame) (North), Brandon Thomas, Clemson (North), Jack Mewhort, Ohio State (North)
-Pretty good group overall (also we will likely see some guards worked in as tackles and probably vice-versa as well). Zack Martin is clearly the top guy from this group and he’s likely a first rounder. If he falls though he’s an automatic starter at either RT or Guard for the Skins. Brandon Thomas is another guy who could be viewed as an early starter at either position. He had a strong week at tackle and probably projects better inside at the next level. Thomas is looking like a 3rd round pick, which could be a nice pick-up for the Redskins. Moses is a big physical tackle, who can just bury opponents in the ground game. He looks to be a right tackle primarily, and while he’s not the most athletic tackle prospect, he plays with good football I.Q. and does a great job limiting pass rushers. Jack Mewhort is more of the opposite of Moses, he’s a better technician than Moses with better feet, but he doesn’t have the power that Moses has. Both Mewhort and Moses could be options in the 4th round.
Gabe Jackson, Miss. State (South), Wesley Johnson, Vanderbilt (South), Joel Bitonio, Nevada (South), Cyril Richardson, Baylor (North), Kadeem Edwards, Tennessee St. (North)
-Cyril Richardson came in as the highest rated guard, but he was exposed a bit this week in practice. He’s not used to being in a traditional offense and he struggled with staying low and getting out of a 3-point stance quickly. That being said, he’s got great size, fares well in run blocking and has plenty of potential. He’s no longer a 2nd round option, but if he slips to the 3rd for the Redskins they could easily consider him. Gabe Jackson was the guard who ended up having the best week, showing great power and a nice anchor in pass protection. He had a lot of success in the SEC and is battle tested for the NFL, he could be another nice fit in the 3rd round. Wesley Johnson and Joel Bitonio both showed nice versatility this week playing both inside and outside. Johnson is the more polished of the two, but Bitonio has better size. Both are 3rd day picks in that 4th-5th round range and could be viewed as quality back-up prospects who could maybe start down the road.
Travis Swanson, Arkansas (South), Bryan Stork, Florida State (South), Weston Richburg, Colorado State (North), Tyler Larsen, Utah State (North)
-It’s a strong center group down here led by the top center in the draft, Travis Swanson from Arkansas. Swanson is a good strong center, who is incredibly smart. He made all the line calls at Arkansas and worked with three different Arkansas quarterbacks in his four years of starting. Like most centers his draft range is fairly wide. He could sneak into the first round due to need, or be available at the top of the 3rd round. From a talent perspective he’s a mid-2nd round guy, but could be a fit for the Skins in either the 2nd round or at the top of the 3rd. Beyond Swanson, Weston Richburg is the next center on the list to watch and probably the 2nd best in the draft. He looks more like a 4th rounder at this point, but could probably start early in his career. Stork is a highly decorated center (winner of the Rimington Award), who has over 40 career starts between both center and guard. He played at a very high level throughout his college career and could be a guy in that 4th-5th round range. Larsen didn’t have a lot of hype entering this week, but he’s really looked nice all week for the North. He’s stonewalled some of the top DT’s in the country. He’s a late round guy, but could be viewed as a nice back-up to a position the Redskins are very thin at.