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Need to Know: Can the Redskins draft an immediate starter on the O-line?

Apr 27, 2015, 5:05 AM EDT


Here is what you need to know on this Monday, April 27, three days before the Washington Redskins go on the clock at the NFL draft.

A milestone

First, before we get to the post here, I’d like to note that today marks Need to Know No. 1,000. This daily dose of Redskins news and notes has been posted 1,000 straight days, every morning since July 31, 2012.

I appreciate all of you who spend a few moments in the morning to check this out. We’ve had 13.3 million page views here in the last thousand days and the daily audience continues to grow. Thanks for reading and for all of your comments here and on social media. You folks make it all worthwhile.

Now, on to what you came here for . . .

Nickel Coverage

Five thoughts about the Redskins and the NFL draft, which thankfully is just a few days away.

—The last time the Redskins had a pick in the top five was in 2012 and everyone knew the pick at No. 2 was going to be Robert Griffin III. And by this time in 2010 word had filtered out at Redskins Park that Trent Williams would be Washington’s pick at No. 4. This year things are pretty well buttoned down. There are plenty of guesses as to where Scot McCloughan will go but nothing even remotely resembling a reliable report regarding who McCloughan prefers.

—Maybe I’m missing something but I don’t get mock drafts from some of the top draft analysts—Todd McShay of ESPN among them—who have the Redskins taking Shane Ray of Missouri with the fifth pick. He’s a very good player and his toe injury doesn’t seem to be that serious. But there is plenty of debate over whether or not he has the athleticism needed to play outside linebacker in a 3-4. It seems to me that if you have any of Dante Fowler, Vic Beasley, or even Bud Dupree on the board, players you know can play the OLB position, why even think about taking Ray?

—How long will Byron Jones last? The UConn cornerback/safety generally was graded as a mid-round pick before the combine with a shoulder injury dinging his stock. Then he jumped a world-record 12 feet in the broad jump in Indianapolis and there seemed to be an irrational jump in his stock. With the Redskins in need of a free safety to play behind Dashon Goldson and to take Goldson’s job in 2016, keep an eye on Jones if he’s still there when the Redskins pick in the second round at No. 38. That may be too high for McCloughan, who is not impressed by performances in T-shirts and shorts at combines and pro days. But if Washington ends up with a later pick in the second via a trade, Jones could be the guy.

—You always have to be careful about assuming a draft pick is going to be an instant starter, or even a starter at any point. But an offensive lineman taken in the first two rounds is a pretty good bet to slide in as the primary starter as a rookie. There were 11 offensive linemen taken in the first and second rounds last year. All but three of them started at least 12 games.

— ran a seven-round mock draft and the first three picks for Washington match up with their three top positional needs. Fowler is the top pick, offensive tackle T. J. Clemmings goes in the second and it’s defensive back Alex Carter of Stanford, who played cornerback but could move to safety, in the third. I think most Redskins fans could live with that, except for the crowd that wants to see multiple trades back and eight to 10 offensive linemen selected.


Today’s schedule: Scot McCloughan pre-draft news conference, noon, Redskins Park

—It’s been 120 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 139 days until they play another one.

Days until: 2015 NFL Draft 3; Redskins minicamp starts 50; Redskins training camp starts 94

If you have any questions about what’s going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I’m always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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In case you missed it

  1. thankslittlebrandonbanks - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:21 AM

    Great article Rich. Congrats on the milestone, I love starting my day here. I agree with you 100% on Shane Ray as compared to the other edge guys. The second round choice is much more nebulous to me. If Byron Jones, Laken Tomlinson, Clemmings, and the safety Randall are all still on the board it seems like a tough choice.

  2. troylok - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:28 AM

    Congratulations on 1,000, Rich. I don’t get the Shane Ray mock draft, either. Maybe if Washington traded back….

    • ajbus1 - Apr 27, 2015 at 5:26 PM

      The mocks get more ridiculous because they do too many. If they want to keep people interested they have to change it up and make some silly projections. Shane Ray at 5 has us talking even if we’re scratching our heads doing it.

  3. sidepull - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:35 AM

    Heres to a 1,000 more. Nothings better with my coffee. Thanks for the great job.
    If they land AJ Cann, I think he will be a starter at guard right off. Not saying I wouldn’t take Shelton in a trade back first.

    • captblood3000 - Apr 27, 2015 at 9:18 AM

      Yes. Cann might be available at #69. From the late 2nd round on, Cann is a value pick. He played left guard at South Carolina and fits a power blocking scheme. He needs to get better at blocking in space.

      I see both guard spots and right tackle as targets in the draft, and the Redskins could also pick Cameron Erving as a center if he’s available at #38. I am hardly the pessimist who beats the offensive line drum. I see Long and Moses as the starting right side of the line by year’s end, and possibly on opening day. But McCloughan’s draft philosophy means that only Trent Williams’ job is safe. Trent’s replacement is not on anyone’s Big Board.

      • ET - Apr 27, 2015 at 12:06 PM

        I’m also hopeful that both Long and Moses pan out, but Long has the easier road because of M’s Lisfranc injury. Regardless, the Skins need extra heft and depth along the line, and there should be a number of enticing prospects in the 2nd and 3rd round.

        Let’s hope Chester is shown the door before opening day!

        • captblood3000 - Apr 27, 2015 at 1:57 PM

          Moses’ recovery from the Lisfranc injury is on schedule. interviewed him recently; that post is dated Apr 22.

          Chester won’t shown the door until they see both Long and Tyler Larsen in camp and the coaches like what they see from both. Even if Chester loses his starting job, he can play center.

        • ET - Apr 27, 2015 at 2:40 PM

          I don’t believe anything about a Lisfranc injury until I see the guy moving on the field. Until then, Moses is a non-factor.

        • captblood3000 - Apr 27, 2015 at 5:55 PM

          Good news, ET. It’s not for everyone.

  4. austrianhttrfan - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:44 AM

    I don´t get the Ray mocks either…

    and congratulations Rich, always enjoy your posts and try to keep updated!

  5. mauriceatwood - Apr 27, 2015 at 7:27 AM

    Congratulations on #1000. I love reading your posts everyday. Keep up the great work.

  6. mr.moneylover - Apr 27, 2015 at 8:05 AM

    I was asking the same question…some saying shane ray gonna drop to the end of the first round cause his toe injury I seriously doubt scot m. Will pick him…Charles Davis have redskins picking vic Beasley with the fifth pick or and I seen others having redskins to pick dante flower jr. ..I also her’d that if amari cooper still on the board when redskins make they pick they will likely trade back

  7. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Apr 27, 2015 at 8:18 AM

    I don’t think Ray cracks the top 10, he’s not a fit for the Falcons, and the Jets will be able to pick a better prospect.

    1. Winston
    2. Mariota
    3. Fowler
    4. Cooper
    5. Williams
    6. Beasley
    7. Kevin White
    8. Bud Dupree
    9. Scherff
    10. Ereck Flowers

    • redskinscaio - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:11 AM

      Why would the Jaguars and the Raiders pass up on the best player in the draft? I just don’t see Williams falling to the 5th pick.

  8. obxskins - Apr 27, 2015 at 8:59 AM

    1000 is good but over 13 million views is rocking. Roll Rich! IMO, if Williams isn’t there and we don’t get enough to trade back…take the road grader from Iowa..I know this is in minority but we are be getting a starter from a decade or so if he stays healthy..His next contract should be within reach and ;last but not less excuse for RG3 if he can’t get it done. When QB doesn’t have time nobody should expect to much success.Appreciate your info and work Rich!

  9. timwillhidetimwillhide - Apr 27, 2015 at 9:13 AM

    I don’t want 8-10 offensive linemen but would like to see 3 Drafted and 1 or 2 free agents

  10. timtowe - Apr 27, 2015 at 9:26 AM

    Always my first stop…every morning without fail…thanks, Rich for all you do to keep us informed.

    I still would favor trading down for multiple pics and get Brandon Scherf and plug him in at guard. He plays with a nasty streak. We can move/cut Chester or have him fight it out with Lauvao at the LG spot. Edge rushers will be available in second and third rounds, with their ultimate impact TBD. I strongly feel like we need at least one starting OL in this draft- and not just a project. — see LeRibeus, that kid from Nebraska last year, etc.

    Plug him in and let him play!! Oh, and please fix the chat, the new format is horrible. And CUT BANKS!

  11. tideskin - Apr 27, 2015 at 9:35 AM

    Congratulations, Rich, that’s an impressive milestone. “Real Redskins” is a must read for me every morning, it’s the best source of Redskins’ information anywhere.

  12. redskinscaio - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:04 AM

    Only 8-10 offensive linemen? We need to draft more than that.

  13. redskinscaio - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:10 AM

    I saw an episode of the show about rookies getting ready for the draft, and Shane Ray is on the show. My impression of him is the following.

    Sounds like a smart kid. Very articulate. But, I worry about his foundation as a person. He grew up in the ghetto, father spent much of the time in prison. Shane admitted to hanging out with the wrong crowd when he was a teenager, getting into trouble and what-not. I hate to judge a book by its cover, but what do you think he’s going to do when the Skins hand him a check for a million dollars? I’d pass on him with the 5th pick. Not only that, but he’s like 235 pounds. If I were to play against him, I would run the ball at him all day. The tackle would pancake him into the ground on every play. Trent Williams would eat him for breakfast. 235 pounds? Come on.

    Vic Beasley on the other hand is a good player, but what impresses me the most is his upper body strength. He benched more reps than most offensive linemen and defensive tackles.

    • ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:28 AM

      Lower body strength is even more important, and Beasley needs to improve in that department.

      The problem with Ray is it doesn’t look like he’s a great fit as an OLB in a 3-4, and he’s not really big enough to be a DE in 4-3.

    • jonevans511 - Apr 27, 2015 at 11:31 AM

      If you were truly judging a book by it’s cover, you’d see Ray as a resilient kid who DIDN’T let the streets swallow him. You’d also see a kid with a fantastic support system, aka his mother. I’m not really sure why your impression is negative simply because he’s fought through a bunch of adversity. The players you see who crumble in these situations are those who have no support system, or support from folks who don’t have their best interests at heart. Ray has a mom who literally fought to keep to him on the right path, and your worry is about him falling back in to the trap he worked his ass off to stay out of? That’s disingenuous and unfair to Ray. If anything you should be worried about his size and ability to play OLB, not his past.

      I’m sure we could look in to every kid’s past and pull out a few not so rosy issues- Manziel isn’t from the “ghetto” but he sure did come with significant warning signs- but the fact of the matter is the young man will either make it or not. You can’t say with any shred of logic that Ray has more of a chance of failing than any other highly-graded player because guess what? He’s not nearly as scarred or damaged as you made him out to be. Shame on you for that not-so-hot take.

      • redskinscaio - Apr 28, 2015 at 8:42 AM

        Annnnnnnnnnd Shane Ray got arrested for possession this morning at 6m.

        • bowlregard - Apr 28, 2015 at 1:01 PM

          Maybe he falls to us in the 2nd round.

        • redskinscaio - Apr 29, 2015 at 8:45 AM

          i don’t want him. I’d prefer a GUARD, maybe the kid from Duke or Cann from South Carolina, or one of the top inside linebackers.

    • Skulb - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:12 PM

      Isn`t that basically the description of Marshawn Lynch right there? Father in jail, wrong crowd, single mom etc. I guess the skittles is missing but still. Let`s stick to the physical stuff. You can never tell how people react to success in advance anyway.

      • redskinscaio - Apr 28, 2015 at 8:32 AM

        BOOM!!! Boy I’m good. Please tell me you saw that Ray got arrested for possession of drugs at 6 am …

        • Skulb - Apr 28, 2015 at 6:41 PM

          Meh just marijuana. Stupid given the timing but that`s it. If you arrested every weed smoker in the NFL you wouldn`t be able to play any games.

        • Rich Tandler - Apr 28, 2015 at 6:43 PM

          The timing is everything, though. Exhibits really, really poor judgement.

        • Skulb - Apr 28, 2015 at 6:47 PM

          Now that goes without saying. It`s more like he failed an intelligence test than anything I`d personally get too upset over.
          No formal repercussions from the NFL before he gets on a team though, or have I got that wrong?

        • Rich Tandler - Apr 29, 2015 at 6:43 AM

          He does start in the substance abuse program, counseling and more frequent testing, right away. Like Randy Gregory, he’s getting drafted with one strike on his record already.

        • redskinscaio - Apr 29, 2015 at 8:44 AM

          come on, a majority of the players don’t smoke drugs. Don’t be naive. They are professional athletes and they know that health is paramount to their livelihoods.

        • Skulb - Apr 29, 2015 at 4:44 PM

          MJ is a good natural pain killer you see, which is why I suspect you`re wrong. Pro footballers are in pain a lot more than most people.

        • redskinscaio - Apr 30, 2015 at 8:49 PM

          they’re drug tested. They require stamina, trust me, most of them don’t smoke anything….

  14. kenlinkins - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:33 AM

    Rich, I have not seen this much drama building for a Thursday night TV show since “Who shot JR”. 13.2 million hit speaks for itself. Please keep up the great work.

  15. redskinscaio - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:35 AM

    NTK –

    Congrats Rich on the 1,000 days of NTK.

    The Redskins will open the season against the Dolphins. Who is going to block Suh, who is currently the greatest lineman in the universe? Chris Chester? Lauvao? Please…

    Will RGIII be running for his life in week 1 because no one on the roster can match up against Suh??

    Will Alfred Morris not be running at all since he will be getting tackled behind the line of scrimmage every other play?

    Will Cameron Wake have 12 sacks since Suh will be collapsing the middle on every play?

    Don’t you want to jump on my bandwagon to have the Skins draft an interior lineman with the first pick, like a Sherff maybe? (Will a rookie interior lineman be able to block the likes of Suh? Probably not now, but maybe in the future!) At least drafting the best offensive lineman with the 5th pick will definitely give us a better chance, if not now then in the future, compared to the likes of an aging Chester and Lauavao, right?

    How will drafting a pass rusher help us win if we can’t move the ball against Suh and company???


    • bangkokben - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:49 AM

      “How will drafting a pass rusher help us win if we can’t move the ball against Suh and company???”

      Surely, you’d see how short sighted it would be to draft for one game? I expect that the Redskins would continue to use zone blocking in the 1st game and a quick passing attack that occasionally goes deep. Something like Griffin’s 1st game against the Saints.

      • redskinscaio - Apr 28, 2015 at 8:45 AM

        You think that drafting an interior lineman to negate Suh and beat the dolphins in week 1, is drafting for one game? WOw, don’t say such dumb things my friends. Like all the pros love to say, one week at a time, one win at a time. ONE GAME AT A TIME.

        Do you really think that the fifth pick in the draft is going to be better than Orakpo, who has gone to the Pro Bowl more than once?

    • Rich Tandler - Apr 27, 2015 at 5:42 PM

      Suh–8 sacks, 12 hits, 37 hurries
      Kerrigan–13 sacks, 9 hits, 51 hurries.

      Are the Dolphins going to draft a tackle No. 1 to stop Kerrigan?


      • redskinscaio - Apr 28, 2015 at 8:38 AM

        Well, the Dolphins already have a pro bowler at left tackle sir. His name is Branden Albert.

        Are you suggesting that Kerrigan is as good if not better than Suh????!!!! Rich, how could you… wow

        First of all, they play different positions. Kerrigan is suppose to go after the QB, Suh played inside, usually DT and DE. Kerrigan got almost half his sacks against the Jaguars in week 2. And like I said, the Dolphins already have a pro bowl left tackle to counter Kerrigan, AND many analysts actually do have the Dolphins drafting another tackle. So yeah, to answer your question, the Dolphins might be drafting another tackle to counter Kerrigan. So the fact that you ended your comment with, “please”, might come back and bite you in the buttox.

        I guess I win. Caio-1 , Rich -0

      • redskinscaio - Apr 28, 2015 at 8:48 AM

        “Are the Dolphins going to draft a tackle No. 1 to stop Kerrigan?”

        They might. And even if they don’t, what does that have to do with us taking an interior lineman? Absolutely nothing. And Kerrigan is not the best pass rusher in the universe. Suh is one of the best defensive linemen in the universe. Name someone better than Suh? Are you suggesting Kerrigan is? Please

  16. bangkokben - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:44 AM

    As far as the McShay mock, he stated when it came out that he expected the Redskins to trade out of the #5 pick – didn’t go into detail as to when they actually pick.

    This was also hours or a day before the turf toe story.

  17. cmehustle - Apr 27, 2015 at 11:03 AM

    I cant wait to see who we draft this season. Im still looking at last seasons draft as well with much hope, these things tend to need at least 3 years to sort out. I know there will be people disappointed with the draft, there always are. They mostly have no clue what the hell theyre talking about anyways, like I said these things take a lot of time to figure out.

  18. Scott talbert - Apr 27, 2015 at 12:36 PM

    Great job Mr.Tandler,you and csn are my no.1 source for Redskins news!

  19. brucealmty - Apr 27, 2015 at 1:15 PM

    Redskins have 5 quality picks, #1~5. I’d like to see them trade back & fill-in the O&D-line and the middle of the field positions. Regardless, Scot knows what he’s doing. HTTR

  20. Caveman Cooking - Apr 27, 2015 at 2:32 PM

    Congrats on the 1K, Mr. T! Well deserved!!
    I agree with everything you wrote in this post. Though, I think Eric Rowe might be in the mix at #2. A versatile DB who played three years at Safety before moving to CB his Senior year. That’s the type of versatility we could use in our defensive backfield.

  21. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Apr 27, 2015 at 3:45 PM

    P.S. Congrats, Rich! Where were my manners!

  22. Rich Tandler - Apr 27, 2015 at 5:44 PM

    Thanks for the good words, folks! And thanks for reading, glad I can help your mornings off to a good start.

    • brucefan1 - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:43 PM

      “Need To Know” ALWAYS comes out in the wee hours of the morning?!
      I need to wake up earlier!

  23. Skulb - Apr 27, 2015 at 6:14 PM

    Well done Rich! When are you getting a podcast?

  24. thankslittlebrandonbanks - Apr 27, 2015 at 10:37 PM

    Shane Ray arrested for possession of pot… The week of the draft, really?

  25. murphsman - Apr 28, 2015 at 2:21 AM

    Congrats Rich Archives

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