Redskins 2019 Draft class: What to expect Rounds 5-7
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Here is a look at what the Redskins can expect from their draft class in both the short and long term. First up I’m looking at their 5th-7th round picks, I will break down the 1st-4th round selections tomorrow.
C/G Ross Pierschbacher:
-Pierschbacher is a long term starter at Alabama who played all three interior positions at a high level. He isn’t the biggest or strongest, but he plays with good technique and displays a high football IQ. This should allow him to be be counted on early as he has experience at the highest level, and brings a solid skill set to the table. If Wes Martin can’t unseat Ereck Flowers as the starting left guard, don’t be surprised if Pierschbacher gets a shot (assuming Flowers struggles). If either Flowers or Martin hold down the starting role, Pierschbacher should compete with Tony Bergstrom to be the top interior back-up on the team.
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-At worst Pierschbacher is a long term C/G back-up who will pick-up a handful of spot starts throughout the year. I still believe his plus technique and intelligence, gives him a chance to become a solid starter at one of those positions. For the Redskins the most likely opening would be LG as there is still a fair amount of uncertainty at that position. Even if he were to assume that starting role, he’s probably not a guy who would hold on to it for 5-7 years, but he can give you a couple solid years as a starter. For late round value though even his floor is enough to make this a quality pick.
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LB Cole Holcomb:
-Holcomb was productive in college, but it was his elite workout at his Pro Day that really cemented his draftable status. Holcomb’s speed and athleticism make him an intriguing guy who can add a lot on Special teams as a rookie. He likely won’t see the field much defensively, but if he was forced into a role due to injuries he might be able to do okay.
-The Redskins have some youth that is ahead of Holcomb on the depth chart so it’s tough to see Holcomb pushing for a starting role over the course of his rookie contract. He might be able to carve out a niche role as an athletic LB who comes in on coverage downs, but that’s likely a ways away. Still he could offer a lot of value to the team as a core special teams player and a solid back-up.
WR Kelvin Harmon:
-Harmon adds size and physicality to the Redskins WR corps and should challenge for the 5th WR spot as a rookie. While he has some intriguing skills, which is why many rated him higher in the draft, he still faces a crowded situation in front of him. Doctson and Richardson are on the outside with Trey Quinn in the slot, McLaurin figures to push for a role supporting all three spots. Those four receivers figure to soak up most of the snaps and targets this season, but there could be a few opportunities for Harmon. Also, with Richardson dealing with multiple injury filled years and Trey Quinn coming off a year mainly lost to injury, Harmon could quickly be placed in a larger role. I’d still temper expectations overall, but he should offer positive production.
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-Harmon was viewed by many as a top 100 prospect even after his poor combine. His natural ball skills and route running, make up for the lack of athletic ability. It would not be surprising to see him push for an outside job in the future, as a guy who can routinely move the chains in the intermediate area. Where he fits in the depth chart for the Redskins going forward will be interesting. Josh Doctson is likely gone after this year, but that still leaves Terry McLaurin and Paul Richardson as outside options. The Redskins may opt to look for a top WR in next year’s class as well. Still despite a crowded situation, there is enough natural talent here to believe that it can find someway to emerge.
CB Jimmy Moreland:
-Moreland is competing with a trio of 2nd year corners (among others) for one of the back-up spots on the Redskins depth chart. Though he has experience playing outside, Moreland is best suited for a slot role given his size. I think he has a good shot of making the roster (practice squad at worst), as he has a bit more upside than some of the other depth corners the Redskins have. If he makes the roster though, he likely will see the field only for special teams duties as a rookie.
-Moreland has the athletic ability, ball skills and competitiveness to be an effective slot starter in the future. The way he’s always around the ball and making plays, he reminds me of a smaller version of Charles Tillman. I love the way he plays the game and competed at the Senior Bowl. He has to navigate a deep depth chart in the short term, but long term there is real upside that he’s the top slot corner on the team.
EDGE Jordan Brailford:
-Brailford should get a chance to compete as a situational EDGE rusher as a rookie, who sees some snaps on obvious passing downs. Despite being a 7th round pick, Brailford brings a lot of speed and quickness off the EDGE. He’s not a complete player so I imagine that Ryan Anderson will get work ahead of him on running downs filling in for the starters, but Brailford brings more natural pass rush ability. I’d imagine his snaps would be low, but I do think he’s got a real shot of making the team and seeing more than special teams work.
-Brailford probably won’t ever be a full time EDGE starter, but he could develop into that guy who gets 400 snaps a year, with 75% of those on passing downs. His athletic ability should be able to play at this level and if he develops some play strength and more pass rush moves, he could be an effective secondary rusher. Obviously a lot needs to go right for that to happen, but this has the potential of being a good late round pick.