Washington Redskins – Lack of Focus Leads to Mediocre Draft

Written by: Barry Lewis on April 23, 2011


The Washington Redskins exited the 2011 season as a team with a bunch of questions that need to be answered. It extended QB Donovan McNabb even though Head Coach Mike Shanahan has also informed him that the team is making no promises that he will be back in 2012. That alone should send some shivers down the spine of the faithful in our Nation’s Capital.

While Santana Moss is a solid but aging wideout, the team lacks a true #1 receiver. RT Jamaal Brown is reportedly leaving Washington through free agency and there is always the issue of whether or not NT Albert Haynesworth is going to come back considering the year that he and Shanahan had last year.

To top it all off, the Redskins are likely going to lose one of its best pass rushers in Andre Carter, 35-year-old Vonnie Holliday is projected to start at right DE next year if all stands still, while ILB Rocky McIntosh is also reportedly leaving and their best ILB, London Fletcher, is 36 years of age.

This is a team that is aging and fast. They need the kind of infusion of youth that it has installed in its defensive secondary which features CB’s Carlos Rogers and DeAngelo Hall and safties LaRon Landry and OJ Atogwe.

It has been rumored that the Redskins are interested in University of Washington QB Jake Locker at pick 10.

Instead of taking Locker, the Reskins moved down in the first round while acquiring a 3rd round pick which led them to take RB Mark Ingram, Alabama, and WR Tandon Doss, Indiana.

Ingram and Doss are two high-quality kids who will become future leaders of their locker room. Ingram will compete for touches with starter Ryan Torain, who was a bright spot for this team in what was a dismal year. Doss is not a #1 wideout but he will replace what has been a bag of poor options opposite of Moss.

More importantly, the Redskins addressed the signal caller position by drafting QB Christian Ponder, Florida State. While Ponder graded out the same as Locker by the National Football Scouting Service, he is not as mobile or as strong an arm.

I cannot see how Ponder becomes a starter in year one so the ‘Skins are going to have to either keep McNabb or find a veteran replacement unless they are happy with Rex Grossman starting the year despite the fact that the Redskins are running a west coast offense which Ponder is considered a good candidate to run. Furthermore, Ponder and Doss have been dealing with fairly serious injuries which permitted them to fall down many teams draft charts.

Following their first three picks, the Redskins selected six defensive players: CB Kendric Burney, DE/OLB Ricky Elmore and DE Christian Anthony, OLB’s Scott Lutrus and Bruce Miller. and DT Cory Grant. Burney serves as insurance if Carlos Rogers or Phillip Buchanon bolt for free agency. Elmore is a high motor tweener who could fit at right OLB. Lutrus and Miller are both fringe candidates to make this team and, at best, are reserves playing special teams. DT Cory Grant serves as a potential lineman who might be a decent fit at nose tackle in the ‘Skins 3-4 system.

Only time is going to tell if this draft helps the Redskins in the long run after the selection of RB Mark Ingram even though they have a very nice starter in Ryan Torain. The Redskins, in this Twitter Draft, did not do enough to merit a grade above a C because of the inability to fix the numerous holes that it has. It would have been better served in drafting defense a lot earlier in this draft, specifically at pick 18 rather than getting Ingram.

Because of that simple fact, the Redskins draft scores as a C-.


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