Fred Davis emerged in 2009 as a legitimate threat as a pass-catching tight end. While he is not yet the polished route runner that Chris Cooley is, his upside potential may be greater than Cooley's.
Having both Davis and Cooley is a luxury for the Redskins, and they could become an excellent duo at the position. But with so many needs to fill, Washington can afford to sacrifice one of them.
Which one? The no-brainer would be Cooley. He's older at 27, and he is coming off of an ankle injury, but he still has a high trade value. Cooley is still capable of playing at a very high level.
Who would the Redskins trade Cooley to, and for what compensation? A good fit for a trade would be the New England Patriots. After recently losing Ben Watson, the Patriots have a glaring need at the tight end position.
The Patriots also have three second-round picks in the upcoming draft, giving them good currency for a trade. One second- and one fourth-round pick would be a good deal for Cooley, and since the Redskins currently only have five picks, they could put them to good use.
The Redskins' signing of Sean Ryan to be a blocking tight end is a good indication that a deal may be imminent. An NFL team needs one good pass-catching tight end and one that can block, and in Ryan and Davis, they have both. Cooley may be the odd man out.
With some extra high picks in the draft, the Redskins would be well positioned to rebuild their offensive line with an infusion of youthful talent. While it would sadden many Redskins fans to see one of their favorites traded away, Mike Shanahan needs to make some hard decisions to ensure a brighter future for Washington.