The Washington Redskins had their fans at "Robert Griffin III." By trading up to take the Baylor quarterback second overall, Washington's draft was made. Yes, the 'Skins went on to select eight more players, but Griffin was going to define this draft from the moment his name was announced at Radio City Music Hall.
Still, we'll take a look at all nine picks the Redskins made in our way-too-early review of last year's draft.
Round 1, Pick 2: Robert Griffin III (QB, Baylor)
There are probably some people out there who will argue that Russell Wilson would have been a better pick here, but there are probably just as many who will argue that Griffin would have been a better No. 1 overall pick than Andrew Luck. All three of those quarterbacks get top grades for unbelievable rookie seasons.
In a perfect world...nothing changes and they still take Griffin. Although, they'd be no worse off with Luck or Wilson.
Round 3, Pick 71: Josh LeRibeus (G, SMU)
Considered a bit of a project, LeRibeus sat and watched all season before playing quite well when asked to step in for Kory Lichtensteiger in Week 17 and the playoffs.
In a perfect world...hindsight's fun, so let's throw this out there. What if the Redskins had kept their No. 6 pick, their second-round pick and each of their next two first-round picks and ended up drafting Morris Claiborne sixth overall and then taking Russell Wilson here? Would you have preferred that?
Round 4, Pick 102: Kirk Cousins (QB, Michigan State)
Mike Shanahan took a lot of heat for taking two quarterbacks in his first three picks, but Cousins came up big when Griffin wasn't available this season. He has a great arm and made good decisions for a rookie. The Michigan State product has already emerged as one of the steadiest backup quarterbacks in the league
In a perfect world...they'd still go with Cousins here.
Round 4, Pick 119: Keenan Robinson (LB, Texas)
Robinson barely played as a rookie, but that was always the plan. For now, he gets an incomplete grade. But none of the linebackers taken behind him are doing anything special, so this pick holds up for now.
In a perfect world...they'd still go with Robinson here.
Round 5, Pick 141: Adam Gettis (G, Iowa)
Gettis is also a project who didn't play as a rookie. The 'Skins knew that going in, and they didn't miss out on any offensive linemen who could have helped them in this spot.
In a perfect world...they'd still go with Gettis here.
Round 6, Pick 173: Alfred Morris (RB, Florida Atlantic)
Shanahan has done it again, turning a sixth-round rookie into a star out of nowhere. Morris had more rushing yards in 2012 than any running back in football except Adrian Peterson. In my mind, this was the best ROI pick in the entire 2012 draft.
In a perfect world...they'd still go with Morris here, obviously. When your first six picks remain the same one year later, you've done a very good job.
Round 6, Pick 193: Tom Compton (OT, South Dakota)
Another offensive lineman who didn't play as a rookie. He made the roster but couldn't do enough to crack the lineup at a weak and thin position, so I'm giving him a so-so grade for a late pick.
In a perfect world...they'd have gone with Nate Potter instead. The Boise State product started half the season at left tackle in Arizona.
Round 7, Pick 213: Richard Crawford (CB, SMU)
He was only relied upon for short stretches, but Crawford held his ground quite well for a rookie seventh-round pick. His preseason performance indicates he could be a long-term option as a No. 2 or No. 3 corner.
In a perfect world...they take Alfonzo Dennard instead. Dennard had three picks in New England in 2012.
Round 7, Pick 217: Jordan Bernstine (CB, Iowa)
He went down with a knee injury in the season opener, so the jury's still out.
In a perfect world...they take Vontaze Burfict instead. Every team in the league wishes they had drafted Burfict now.
If they could go back in time...
Round 1, Pick 2: QB Robert Griffin III
Round 3, Pick 71: G Josh LeRibeus
Round 4, Pick 102: QB Kirk Cousins
Round 4, Pick 119: LB Keenan Robinson
Round 5, Pick 141: G Adam Gettis
Round 6, Pick 173: RB Alfred Morris
Round 6, Pick 193: OT Nate Potter
Round 7, Pick 213: CB Alfonzo Dennard
Round 7, Pick 217: LB Vontaze Burfict
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