The NFL Draft hasn't exactly been a priority in years past at Redskins Park. Regardless of the coach, the Redskins are notorious for placing more value on free agents than young talent coming out of college.
This has primarily been the case for two reasons: First, Daniel Snyder, the owner and a diehard Redskins fan with deep pockets, wants to win now. Right now.
Second, former VP of Football Operations, Vinny Cerrato, believed he could make the Redskins better by signing proven—although often times past their prime—free agents.
This method has failed miserably and teams like the Packers, Colts, Patriots and Steelers have proven that the best way to succeed is to build through the draft.
Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen are a big upgrade from Jim Zorn and Vinny Cerrato. It appears they've bought into the idea of building through the draft—although the trades for Donovan McNabb and Jammal Brown would suggest otherwise.
Heading into the 2011 draft, the Redskins currently have seven picks—a first, a second, two fifths, a sixth and two sevenths. The extra fifth and seventh rounders are conditional picks resulting from the Jammal Brown and Justin Tryon (Colts) trades.
If executed the right way, the Redskins can use the 2011 NFL Draft to make great strides towards a brighter future.
Here's how they can do it.