Washington Redskins' Guide to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine

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Washington Redskins' Guide to the 2014 NFL Scouting Combine
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

For the second consecutive year and the fourth time in the last decade, the Washington Redskins are without a first-round pick in the NFL draft. Blame Robert Griffin III for that. Now, the primary focus of their 2014 draft will likely be on giving RGIII as much support as possible. 

The first major component of that draft preparation process will get underway this week when the NFL Scouting Combine kicks off in Indianapolis. Here's a primer from Washington's perspective. 

 

Where they pick

Round 2: 2
Round 3: 2
Round 4: 2
Round 5: 2
Round 6: 2
Round 7: 2

 

What they need

Nick Wass/Associated Press

A starting-caliber wide receiver: Josh Morgan, Leonard Hankerson and Aldrick Robinson have all had their shots, but none can fully complement Pierre Garcon. With the aging Santana Moss possibly done, it's officially time to use an early pick on an NFL-ready wideout. 

Big interior offensive linemen: Griffin was crushed behind that undersized line last year, with the middle collapsing far too often. Time to upgrade on guard Chris Chester and center Will Montgomery. Even if they retain some zone-blocking tendencies, they need more size. 

An inside linebacker or two: The London Fletcher era is over, and it's not clear yet if Perry Riley will be back. Riley had a bad 2013 season anyway, and there isn't a lot of depth there. 

One more safety: They drafted Phillip Thomas and Bacarri Rambo last year, but Thomas missed his entire rookie season, and Rambo was a disappointment. They can't keep relying on Brandon Meriweather. I'm guessing they'll invest in a safety in free agency, but that shouldn't prevent them from adding one more in the draft. 

 

Must-watch prospects

Kelvin Benjamin (WR, Florida): He has the size and speed they're looking for, but is there any chance he drops into Round 2?

Allen Robinson (WR, Penn State): More of a possession guy, but he might be more polished than Benjamin. Also probably a first-round pick. 

Jordan Matthews (WR, Vanderbilt): Similar to Robinson in terms of size and speed. Also expected to go late in Round 1. 

Jarvis Landry (WR, LSU): Good all-around receiver coming out of the SEC, but he's not particularly big or fast. 

Martavis Bryant (WR, Clemson): He's got the measurables, but he might be a little too raw to play a major role right off the bat.

Gabe Jackson (G, Mississippi State): Second-round possibility who can pass protect. 

Cyril Richardson (G, Baylor): Has to prove himself after a tough Senior Bowl. Both Jackson and Richardson are massive, which would be refreshing. 

Chris Borland (LB, Wisconsin) Has a bit of a London Fletcher feel. Likely to be a mid-round pick. 

Shayne Skov (LB, Stanford): Aggressive tackler from a 3-4 defense. Could be a nice fit from Round 3 or 4. 

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Jimmie Ward (S, Northern Illinois): They could use a playmaker to push David Amerson and complement DeAngelo Hall.

Calvin Pryor (S, Louisville): Physical safety might not drop into Round 2. But you never know at this stage. 

Ed Reynolds (S, Stanford): He's scrappy and has a similar feel to Pryor. 

Deone Bucannon (S, Washington State): More of a big hitter. Can he cover? They need safeties who can do that.

 

Don't forget about...

Which position should the Redskins prioritize at the draft?

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Brandon Linder (G, Miami): Dude is 6'5", 316 pounds. Would make an interesting mid- to late-round pick. 

Ryan Groy (G, Wisconsin): Probable late-round pick is also 6'5", but 325. 

Terrence Brooks (S, Florida State): Versatility in coverage is a key for the former corner. Could be a steal in the middle rounds. 

Dion Bailey (S, USC): Also strong in coverage, but he could have a higher upside. 

Marcus Martin (C, USC): A strong pass protector who could be had in the middle rounds. 

Bryan Stork (C, Florida State): Plenty of experience at a high level. He's ready and can probably be found later in the draft. 

Tyler Larsen (C, Utah State): Same deal. 

 

They'll have to wait to see...

Alden Darby (S, Arizona State): A strong safety who is good in coverage and could be available beyond Round 5. 

Hakeem Smith (S, Louisville): Same deal, and he's a 24-year-old redshirt senior, so he could be NFL-ready. 

Neither Darby nor Smith is in Indy.

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