After free agency the Washington Redskins, like all teams, have needs either through departed players or simple holes in the roster highlighted from play last year. Last year’s weaknesses were heavily on defense. There are some depth issues on the OL as well. Since the start of free agency there has been a major turnover at the wide receiver position. You have the departure of Desean Jackson and Pierre Garcon. While you bring in guys like Terrell Pryor and Brian Quick. Pryor is a bright young talent still learning the position and has a lot of size and has good speed for his size. He is still learning the position, but if he can get on track early with Kirk Cousins then this could be a huge addition. Quick is a solid player that comes from a very underwhelming offense and has good size himself. He is not of the caliber of Pierre or Desean but he wasn’t brought in to be. The Washington Redskins still have a bright young slot guy in Jamison Crowder, and our top pick from last year Josh Doctson.
Ranking the needs
1) Nose Tackle. This team hasn’t had a Nose Tackle since switching to the 3/4 defense and the Nose is the most important position for this type of defense. Even in a league where the Redskins run their nickel 75% of the time. This team direly needs a player that can be elite and collapse the pocket from the center and hold down blockers to keep our inside backers clean to attack the run.
2) Left Guard. I have this higher on my list then most but our line struggled running the ball last year. So many time the Washington Redskins backs had defenders on them as they received the handoff. This has to be addressed at some point in this draft. Not something I would spend my top two picks on with the defensive talent in this draft. But if round 3 the talent is too good to pass that’s the point I start to consider the position.
3) Inside Linebacker. Washington got solid play from Mason Foster and Will Compton. That said their defense needs a lights out havoc wreaking presence from this position. We are horrible against the run and we struggle covering solid Tight ends. There are a few guys at this position who can step in day 1 and turn this position around.
4) Safety. I like the addition of D.J. Swearinger. I also am very high on S’ua Cravens. That said my two favorite players in this draft are Jabrill Peppers and Malik Hooker. These 2 guys are the future stars of this position and the Washington Redskins needs to snatch them if by chance one is available. Peppers is just a lights out football player while Hooker is just a rangy FS who will make QB’s pay trying to throw over top of him.
5) Running Back. The Redskins have some pretty good backs collectively. That said there are a ton of good backs this year and finding a guy who can carry the load and give their offense a versatile weapon could take this offense over the top and give Kirk a player who can take pressure off of him.
6- Defensive End. The Washington Redskins wanted to get younger on the DL this year but allowed their best player to walk in Chris Baker. They added Terrell McClain and Stacey McGhee. Both are known for their efforts against the run. This is a welcome skill as our runn stopping is embarrassing. Washington still need to try and find a player who can excel against the run and the pass, finding this type of player would be as high of a priority as left guard.
Round 1 pick 17- Safety Jabrill Peppers, Michigan
As I stated above this guy is just a heck of a player. to good to pass on. The Redskins need a game changing player – Peppers is it. This team can not afford to pass on a elite talent and this guy is just that. I know this team has greater needs but in round 1 and 2 you take the most talented player period and with this pick it’s not even close. your talking about a top 5 talent who falls because scouts struggle with hybrid players who are becoming a serious force in this league. this addition could give this team a heck of a secondary with Norman, Breeland, Cravens and Swearinger and Peppers. You can mix and match the 3 safteys in the nickel and you just simply can’t pass up this player.
Round 2 pick 49- Defensive End Montavius Adams, Auburn
This guy is a very athletic guy for a person his size. at 6’3″ 310LBS the guy is a load. Good player against the run and has the burst off the line and strength to put pressure on QB’s. This is where need also meets talent while getting a great value for premium of the position he plays.
Round 3 pick 81- Inside Linebacker Raekwon McMillan, Ohio State
A very talented player who has ability to cover in the passing game but absolutely attacks the ball carriers. Another value meets need and just would put a youthful bright athletic talent on a unit in need of upgrades.
Round 4 pick 114- Nose Tackle Jarron Jones, Notre Dame
A very very big guy. Gets awesome push and constantly works against double teams. He collapses the pocket in a QB’s face and he was a big reason Jaylon Smith from last year was free to attack ball carriers sideline to sideline. Actually I have Jones ranked as a late 2nd early 3rd round talent but this is his perjected range but picking him in the 3rd would be very okay with me.
Round 4 pick 123- Offensive Guard Jon Toth, Kentucky
Could be the last piece to this line. Has played Center but has the size strength and moving ability to play guard. Spencer Long could either move back to Left guard or stay at Center. Either way Toth allows you to plug in a need with a big solid player.
Round 5 pick 154- Running Back Aaron Jones, UTEP
I know you think round 5 you think about a depth player. But don’t let his 5’9″ height sway you. This guy can do it all. at 210 pounds he runs behind his pads. Great balance and can do damage as a receiver. This guy at a name brand school and your talking about a high 2nd round back all day. Too good to pass on.
Round 6 pick 201- Outside Linebacker Devonte Fields, Louisville
In big games you see a top pick type talent. Against teams he should have dominated he simply didn’t or disappeared. He has off the field issues as well which is why he’s available at this point. As you can tell defense has been a focus from top to bottom. Fields doesn’t fill a need but the talent is there you hope a late rounder can put it together and at least provide depth. Fields has ability to do even more then just that.
Round 6 pick 209- Safety Rayshawn Jenkins, Miami
He will be a special teamer to start. But has talent to work with. Again you just hope for depth late but these last 3 picks all have the talent to start or even become a known commodity.
Round 7 pick 220- Inside Linebacker Hardy Nickerson, Illinois
Has had good coaching and early on could be a force on special teams. Another defender but I am simply adding the most talent I can and trying to add a ton of competition to that side of the ball. I’m not saying value wasn’t available for these selections but the talent of these picks are too great to miss knowing this haul could have 3 instant starters with 7 solid role players year 1.
Round 7 pick 235- Tight end Sean Culkin, Missouri
A hard nosed blocker with awesome size. Has receiving talent but will and could have a impact in the running game if he catches on quick enough.