Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Thoughts on the Draft pt.2: Analysis and Breakdown of Every Redskin Draft Move and Draft Pick

Before you can even look at the Redskins 2010 draft class, you have to think about what moves the Skins made and what they did before and during the draft. In reality this draft spans as far back as the 2008 training camp when the Redskins started to throw away picks (thanks again Vinny) to bring in an over priced Jason Taylor. Taylor didn't want to be here and Greg Blache didn't want to use him, so the Skins "rented" Taylor for less than a full season of games at the cost of our 2009 2nd round pick and 2010 6th round pick (Oh, and about 8 million dollars). Plus they made a bunch of other moves that caused a ripple effect on their draft board. You can't just look at the players drafted in 2010 alone. For this draft you have to look at the moves that occurred before and during the draft and then look at who got drafted. It's a bit complicated but I'll walk you through everything. Let the fun begin.

So let's first look at the Redskins' draft board had they not made any moves prior to the 2010 draft*:
1st Round: #4 (4th overall)
2nd Round: #5 (37th overall)
3rd Round: #4 (68th overall)
4th Round: #5 (103rd overall)**
5th Round: #4 (135th overall)**
6th Round: #5 (174th overall)**
7th Round: #4 (211th overall)**
 *The Redskins were not awarded any compensatory picks for the 2010 season.
** This is the approximate pick, if the Skins still had their 3rd round pick they would probably be picking one spot lower. That said, I left them at where they wound up picking in this draft.

Now, let's look at all of the moves that took place prior to the 2010 draft. Note that these moves occurred during both the Cerrato/Zorn and Allen/Shanahan tenures.

2nd round pick- traded to Philadelphia Eagles for QB Donovan Mcnabb
3rd round pick- used in 2009 supplemental draft for  DE/LB Jeremy Jarmon
6th round pick- traded to Miami Dolphins for DE Jason Taylor (2008)
5th round pick- traded to St. Louis Rams for DT/DE Adam Carriker and 5th round pick (163rd overall)
7th round pick- traded to St. Louis Rams for DT/DE Adam Carriker and 7th round pick (208th overall)

So, heading into the draft the Redskins have the following picks:
1st Round: #4 (4th overall)
4th Round: #5 (103rd overall)
5th Round: #32 (163rd overall)
7th Round: #4 (208th overall)

But, as you know by now, the Redskins drafted more than four players in the 2010 draft. So they made some more moves during the draft. Let's take a look at these shall we:

5th round pick- traded to Miami Dolphins for a 6th round pick (174th overall) and 7th round pick (219th overall)
7th round pick- traded to New England Patriots for two 7th round picks (229th, 231st overall)
(Ed. Note: Jason Campbell traded to Raiders for 4th rounder in 2012 has no bearing on this draft class and will not be mentioned in the analysis)

So, by the end of the draft the Skins had the following picks to draft players:
1st Round: #4 (4th overall)
4th Round: #5 (103rd overall)
6th Round: #5 (174th overall)
7th Round: #12 (219th overall)
7th Round: #22 (229th overall)
7th Round: #24 (231st overall)

In the end, the Redskins started with seven draft picks and by the end of the draft still were able to draft six players despite making six moves/trades with draft picks being the primary currency used by the Skins in those deals. Below will be the final draft board taking into account every player acquired and the round they for which they were taken. After that, I'll do some analysis on the moves/trades and then finally some thoughts and analysis on the players who were drafted.

Final 2010 draft board

1st Round- OT, Trent Williams
2nd Round-  QB, Donovan Mcnabb
3rd Round- DE/LB, Jeremy Jarmon
4th Round- LB, Perry Riley
5th Round- DE/DT Adam Carriker
6th Round- FB/TE Dennis Morris, DE Jason Taylor (no longer on team)
7th Round- WR/KR Terrence Austin, C/G Erik Cook, OT/OG Selvish Capers, DE/DT Adam Carriker

Total Net Players: 9

Thoughts on the Trades/Moves

2nd for McNabb- Donovan McNabb for a 2nd round pick and either a 3rd or 4th in 2011 is more or less a steal for the Redskins in my opinion. The Skins get a major upgrade at the QB position and the leader on the offensive side of the ball that they've been looking for. The only concern is whether McNabb can stay healthy for an entire season. Plus it makes the Redskins/Eagles games this year more exciting.

3rd for Jarmon- Had the Redskins known that they would have been picking so high in the 2010 draft, maybe they wouldn't have made this move. That said, by drafting Jarmon in 2009, the Skins had a player they could develop for a season before losing the pick used for them. Jarmon had a decent 2009 for a rookie project but a torn ACL ended his season early. Jarmon may have a tough time making the roster in 2010 because he must learn a new position (3-4 OLB) and has 4 other players ahead of him trying to make the team at that position (Orakpo, Carter, Alexander and Wilson).

5th and 7th picks for Carriker, 5th and 7th round picks- More or less this trade was another steal for the Redskins. The Redskins moved down 28 picks in the 5th and moved up 3 picks in the 7th round to get a former 1st rounder in Adam Carriker. So, it was a net of 25 places for the Skins to get a former first round pick. I don't know how any Rams fan can justify this as a good move for them. The only down side to Carriker is that he's been injury prone. If he can remain healthy, he might be a great fit for the Skins as a 3-4 DE.

6th (and 2009 2nd round pick) for Taylor- Terrible move, the worst that happened for this draft class. Taylor had career lows with the Skins (granted, he was injured during a big chunk of the year). This move was made almost two years ago and the Skins are still paying for those mistakes.

5th round pick for 6th and 7th round picks- Miami moves up about 12 spots and in the process the Skins get their original sixth round pick back and a seventh round pick. You can't really complain  about moving down at this point. At this point of the draft, you're looking to fill needs and for the Redskins this year quantity is more important than quality.

7th round pick for two 7th round picks- Again need/quantity trumps quality at this point and by having two picks, the Skins wound up with a G/C in Cook and what could be a real steal in getting Capers with their last pick.

Thoughts on the Draft Picks
This is the tricky part, since we have no clue what these guys will bring to the table until we actually see them play in the NFL. Who would have thought Chris Horton would have been the most productive player of his Redskins draft class that year? So I'll just briefly talk about each player and what I think they will bring to the table. Unlike previous years, where I do extensive research to find out info. on each player,  our friends at BGO complied a great thread covering each draft pick. You can go read that here.

1st Round-  OT, Trent Williams:
If you're a regular reader of IIWII, then you know I had Russel Okung as the IIWII consensus pick this year. The reason was pretty much beacuse he was the most polished and safest OT coming out of this draft. I think Okung is a decent run blocker and is an excellent pass blocker. That said, he has less upside than that of Anthony Davis and Trent Williams. Williams is extremely athletic and looks like he'll be a dominant run blocker for the Skins. The trick will be to improve upon his pass blocking skills. Many were concerned about Williams' work ethic coming into the NFL, yet with him coming to the Skins I don't have that fear. Mike Shanahan expects his players to participate as much as possible and to work hard. Also, Malcolm Kelly is Williams' best friend and will push him to become his best. If you're a Skins fan no matter who was taken by the Skins (whether it was Davis, Okung or Williams) you have to be happy that the Skins finally addressed the O-line and took a LT who will improve the run game and hopefully do a better job of protecting McNabb than what Levi Jones or Stephon Heyer could do.

4th Round- LB, Perry Riley:
I don't know too much about Riley. I know he was a WOLB while at LSU and is considered to be a good player in coverage and a solid tackler. It sounds like he'll start out playing special teams and eventually fight for a staring spot as a ILB in 2011.

6th Round- FB/TE Dennis Morris:
Again, don't know much about this guy. I have a feeling that the Skins are going to groom him to be more of a FB/H-Back and maybe a possible heir to Mike Seller's spot in the future. Another guy that will make his living (and a roster spot) by playing special teams.

7th Round- WR/KR Terrence Austin:
I doubt Austin will make this team as a WR. No, he'll be here only if he can return punts and kick offs well. With the cutting of both Rock Cartwright and Antwaan Randle-El, the Redskins need to find a few players who can become our new K.O. and punt return specialists. Austin could be that guy.

7th Round- C/G Erik Cook:
He might be a guard or center on the team and it's never wrong to have depth at the position. I think he'll be a project to develop though and I wouldn't be surprised if he went to the practice squad this season with the Skins having a decent amount of depth (or at least a large amount of players fighting to be depth on this team) at the moment.

7th Round-  OT Selvish Capers:
Don't let the bad performance at the Senior Bowl fool you about this guy. Yes, he seems to be a project and will  need to be developed. That said, he looks like he could be a very nice depth player and a possible starter (or at least spot starter) at both tackle positions. Capers could become the steal of the draft as many had him as a 2nd or 3rd round pick.

Final Thoughts

Look at the draft picks and do you notice a pattern develop? I do. It looks like the Skins used the draft to primarily focus on two elements. First is the O-line. Drafting three O-linemen was addressing a huge need for the Skins and the fact that they got Capers in the seventh round (I was hoping we'd take him in the fourth round) addresses some of the desperate needs the Skins have at the O-line position. The second area was special teams. With exception to Williams, Capers and probably Cook, the entire draft class will be playing on teams this season. Special teams is often the most underrated element of football. The Redskins special teams have been average to generally poor the last few seasons and it's nice to see the Skins attempt to fix some of those problems with an influx of speed and youth.

In the end, this class will be remembered by two players and whether or not they can perform as expected. Can Donovan Mcnabb remain healthy and play at the same level that he has for the past few years? Can McNabb lead this team to the plays and possibly to a Super Bowl? Or will he just be another past-his prime player that comes to DC and fails to live up to the expectations? The other player is Trent Williams. Can Williams develop into the best offensive lineman that came out of this draft? Can Williams live up to his potential and excel in Mike Shanahan's zone blocking scheme? Can he protect Donovan McNabb's blindside and prevent him from getting hurt?

If the answer is yes to all of the above questions my friends, look out because the Redskins could be back to being a contender and this could be one of Washington's better draft classes in years. Fail and down goes the hopes of seeing this franchise succeed for another decade. Many would like to tell you that this was a good draft or a bad draft, but we truly don't know and we won't know until these players take the field. Even then, it may be another 2-3 years (or more) to be certain.

So don't believe the grades that are being thrown out by the experts. They don't know any better than what you or I will know about whether these players will pan out. The draft is a waiting game and time (either we have to wait forever or we never have enough of it) again is not our friend. Plus, they didn't take into account all of the moves made to get us from point A to point Z. We shall get an idea soon enough as we head to training camp, hit the preseason and see the Skins take the field against Dallas in the home opener.....if the Skins made the right moves, we'll know because in 2010 or 2011 we'll be in the postseason.

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