Redskins Draft: The Best Fit for Washington Redskins at Every Position
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They have seven picks in total, and will without a doubt address their glaring need of a defensive back.
Aside from defensive back, they other have less pressing, yet still very important needs on both sides of the ball. This is a year where Washington cannot afford to spend its picks on many projects or rotational players; it is imperative that the team build depth for the future with solid, talented players that could possibly play right away.
The Redskins desperately need a a guy to bookend their offensive line across from Trent Williams, and will likely look to find a guy who can fill that role with one of their earlier picks. While they did bring in a few tackles in free agency, they aren’t exacting starting-caliber players.
They will also need to find a potential replacement for veteran linebacker London Fletcher, who could very well retire after the 2013 season.
Regardless of position, there are many guys that could fill the voids that are on the Redskins roster.
This list is not about which player Washington should pick first or last, but is rather about which players have the ability and skill set to fit into its system and perform at a high level sooner than later.
Quarterback: Matt Scott, Arizona
Matt Scott NFL Player Comparison
Matt Scott has been one of the hotter quarterback prospects heading into the draft.
While he gets lost in the fray between Geno Smith and Matt Barkley, he is still a solid quarterback prospect.
He is one of the best dual-threat QBs in this year’s class and could definitely develop into a good player.
The Redskins got solid quarterback play from Kirk Cousins in RG3’s absence last season, but he doesn’t run the option and pistol quite as well as a more mobile passer. The newest Redskins quarterback, Pat White, seems like a (very) poor man’s Robert Griffin III. But, compared to Scott, he fails to outshine the prospective Redskin.
Scott will likely be picked up in the mid-to-late rounds, but he has great potential. His ability as a passer and runner was highlighted in his first full season as a starter at Arizona in 2012.
Also, he has a comparable build to RG3 at 6’3”, 221 pounds. He doesn’t quite have the same speed, but he is quicker than fast and is very evasive.
Scott is a great prospect to groom behind No. 10.
Running Back: Marcus Lattimore, South Carolina
Marcus Lattimore eyes the hole in the offensive line.
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Although he suffered a devastating leg injury that ended his season in 2012, Marcus Lattimore is still one of the best running back prospects in this year’s draft.
Although the Redskins have a very solid runner in Alfred Morris, they could definitely use a change-of-pace back to complement the power runner.
Lattimore has elite speed and is a home run hitter. He is also very durable and is great catching the ball out of the backfield.
Although Washington largely used Evan Royster for that type of role last year, Lattimore would be a tremendous upgrade.
Morris would get fewer carries, but adding Lattimore would make the Washington offense that much more dangerous. He can be effective between the tackles and can also bounce to the outside to gain some extra yards.
He is a tough, gritty ball-carrier would be a great runner to add to the Redskins’ stable.
Wide Receiver: Stedman Bailey, West Virginia
Stedman Bailey celebrates another touchdown catch.
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This may be a surprise pick to some, but in looking at the tape, the reasoning is simple–Stedman Bailey can catch the damn ball.
One thing that hurt RG3 at times last year was the inconsistent play of some receivers like Leonard Hankerson and Josh Morgan. Although these players did have a positive impact at times for the Skins offense, they dropped the ball (literally and figuratively) on some important plays in important games.
Bailey would add a very reliable set of hands on the offensive side of the ball and could be a great option in the slot.
Although Santana Moss holds the starting slot receiver spot as of now, he will be 34 by the time the season starts. Even though he had a solid 2012 campaign, his age is starting to show.
Bailey could develop into a cornerstone of the offense, and may even become the Redskins’ most consistent receiver within the next few years.
Tight End: Jake Stoneburner, Ohio St.
Jake Stoneburner catches a touchdown pass.
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Despite not putting up gaudy numbers in college, Jake Stoneburner would be a great addition for the Redskins in the later rounds.
He has good size for a tight end at 6’3”, 252 pounds and possesses great speed. He never had great numbers in college, but has the type of ability you want a tight end to have. He is also a good in-line blocker and pass-catcher.
Aside from a couple run-ins with the police for urinating in public and subsequently running from the cops, Stoneburner is a solid prospect.
While Washington did bring back starting tight end Fred Davis, it doesn’t have much behind him on the roster. Logan Paulsen was dependable but not great, and Niles Paul has yet to prove that he has much to add on offense.
Adding in Stoneburner would be a quality, cheap move for the future; he may even be a contributor right away.
Offensive Line: Lane Johnson, Oklahoma
Lane Johnson at the NFL Scouting Combine.
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Lane Johnson will more than likely be gone by the time the Redskins’ first pick rolls around on Day 2 of the draft, but he is the perfect fit for Washington’s offensive line.
He has the size to maul smaller defenders, but the speed to keep up with pass-rushers.
Johnson also possesses a type of tenacity that you like to see in a blocker, especially in Mike Shanahan’s zone-blocking scheme.
He excelled at the combine, which further helped his draft stock rise, and has been impressing teams since.
While he played left tackle in his last year at Oklahoma, he could easily make the switch to right tackle and be the bookend tackle that Washington so desperately needs.
Defensive Line: Jesse Williams, Alabama
Jesse Williams shows off a goofy face following an SEC championship victory.
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The Redskins have been missing a consistent run-stuffer in the middle of the defensive line for years.
Although veteran Barry Cofield played well for Washington last year, he isn’t a fantastic option as a starter and is getting older.
Jesse Williams would be a great guy to bring in for several reasons, one of which being that he has the ideal size for a nose tackle at 6’3”, 323 pounds.
He doesn’t offer much as a pass-rusher, but is a great defender against the run.
Williams isn’t very fast and didn’t work out at the combine, but he is still a guy who could come in and perform right away.
Linebacker: Bruce Taylor, Virginia Tech
Bruce Taylor analyzes the situation on the field.
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For years London Fletcher has been the heart and soul of Washington’s defense.
As an inside linebacker, he was the quarterback of the defense. Fletcher definitely made a bigger impact than most anyone else.
With 2013 being his 17th season, it is time for the Redskins to start looking for a replacement for the veteran.
A guy that would seemingly fit into Jim Haslett’s defensive system is VT’s Bruce Taylor.
Taylor had only 77 total tackles in 2012, but managed to tally 10.5 tackles for loss as well as 5.5 sacks and five passes broken up.
He surely isn’t the tackling machine that Fletcher is, but he is a sideline-to-sideline player with good upside.
He is a great run defender and has a very instinctual style of play.
Taylor might not be the best linebacker in this year’s class, but he fits the system and would get to be the understudy of one of the league’s best before having to come in and play, although he could likely contribute in a smaller role Week 1.
Cornerback: Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Connecticut
Wreh-Wilson returns an interception against Cincinnati.
Blidi Wreh-Wilson has steadily seen his stock rise over the past few months.
He has the ideal size for a defensive back and is also a longer, lankier corner. He has the finesse to break up passes, but also has the size to jam bigger receivers at the line of scrimmage.
He plays well in man-to-man coverage, but is probably better suited for zone coverage in the NFL.
Wreh-Wilson is the type of corner that defensive backs coach Raheem Morris likes as he is tenacious and physical–two things the Redskins secondary has struggled with the past few years.
Across from Josh Wilson, he could be a great option day one.
Along with DeAngelo Hall and whomever they have playing safety, Wreh-Wilson could become a very important part of the Redskins defense very soon.
Safety: Jonathan Cyprien, Florida International
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Jonathan Cyprien is this year’s small school gem.
With his stock rising higher and higher since his performance at the Senior Bowl, Cyprien has now pushed himself into first-round consideration.
He proved that he could step up in the box and play well against the run. Cyprien also showed that he was a great player in coverage, as he covered both wideouts and tight ends like a blanket.
Given the new generation of hybrid pass-catching tight ends, teams are trying to catch up to the trend by attaining rangy-er safeties, and Cyprien certainly fits the mold.
His speed also allows him to keep up with receivers downfield, and he has good ball skills as well.
Specialist: Quinn Sharp
Quinn Sharp between kicks.
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The Redskins got solid play from punter Sav Rocca last season, but he wasn’t as effective as they had originally hoped.
There were many times where they could have really taken some pressure off of their defense if they had a better punter.
Enter Quinn Sharp.
The former Oklahoma St. Cowboy averaged 46.3 yards per punt his senior season and is great at pinning the opposing team deep in its own territory.
While he mainly worked as a kicker at the Senior Bowl, he played punter during his time in college, but could likely do either (if not both) in the NFL.
Quinn could be picked up in the late rounds and could become a solid special teamer for the Skins if he does manage to beat out Rocca during training camp.