Is Da'Rick Rogers a "Darkhorse" Candidate for Redskins at #51?

Kevin C. Cox

A look at the likelihood that the Redskins draft WR, Da'Rick Rogers, in the 2nd round

It's draft week! A holiday for some, this week marks the second stage of forming the 2013 Washington Redskins. A lot has been made about our secondary, our RT situation, and need for a wide receiver. So where do we go? With Shanahan's penchant for drafting people few of us have speculated about, I wonder if Da'Rick Rogers may be a candidate for the #51 overall pick.

Addressing our secondary has been everyone's main focus. Plenty of people vouching for which cornerback or safety they want to see in the burgundy and gold. Lately, maybe its smokescreens or maybe its not, but many draft experts have hinted or indicated that the Redskins may go wide receiver in the 2nd round. The more i think about it the more I think they may be right. Shanahan's main focus is going to be improving the team, but the offensive side is where he makes his money. Adding more weapons around Robert Griffin III who can help score points will take some pressure off of RGIII having to run and also take some pressure off our defense as a whole. When you play with a lead your defense can play more aggressively. Here is a likely scenario:

WRs: Tavon Austin, DeAndre Hopkins, Cordarelle Patterson, Keenan Allen, Justin Hunter & Robert Woods off the board.

CBs: Dee Milliner, Desmond Trufant, Xavier Rhodes, DJ Hayden, Jamar Taylor, & Johnthan Banks off the board

FS/SSs: Kenny Vaccaro, Johnathan Cyprien, Matt Elam, DJ Swearinger & Eric Reid off the board

So where do you go from here?

2nd Tier WRs: Quinton Patton, Markus Wheaton, Da'Rick Rogers, Terrance Williams, Aaron Dobson

2nd Tier CBs: Darius Slay, David Amerson, Jordan Poyer, Logan Ryan, Robert Alford

2nd Tier FS/SS: Bacarri Rambo, Shamarko Thomas, Phillip Thomas

Im not saying other positions are ruled out but these are the top three positions that the fans of Hogs Haven have discussed the most (maybe RT also). If one of those prospects that i listed above as "off the board" are somehow still there, I think the Redskins would pull the trigger on that specific prospect. But, if it plays out like I wrote it, then you have to begin looking at these 2nd tiers. So who would benefit the Redskins the most? You could make an argument for most of them but a name I haven't seen many times is Da'Rick Rogers.

Da'Rick Rogers has 1st round talent. Two years ago, he led the SEC (arguably the best division in college football) with 67 catches, 1040 yards and 9 touchdowns. At the end of the season, he was a first team All-SEC selection. After he transferred to Tennessee Tech, he had 61 catches for 893 yards and 10 touchdowns. He set records for receptions and receiving yards in a single game. He received the "Elite Wide Receiver Award" by College Football Performance Awards for the 2011 and 2012 seasons.

Rogers is a tough, physical receiver in the Terrell Owens/Dez Bryant/Greg Little mold. A fluid athlete with great body control, Roger routinely runs across the middle without fear bringing down difficult catches. He can beat cornerbacks with both his physicality and his route running. One of his biggest assets and a huge proponent in the Redskins offensve scheme is his run-after the catch ability. He plays with an attitude, is hard to bring down in the open field and is not afraid to lower a shoulder and get the extra yards. While he doesnt have the highest top end speed at a 4.56 40, this is an EXPLOSIVE athlete. He finished as a top 5 performer in the 3 cone drill, the 20 yard shuttle, the 60 yard shuttle, the vertical jump and the broad jump. So adding to his big frame (6-2 1/2 215 lbs) to play on the outside, he also has the short area quickness and fearlessness to play in the slot so you can use him all over the field.

The reason he'd be available for us here is well documented. He was forced to transfer to Tennessee Tech after being dismissed from Tennessee for 3 failed drug tests. He would need to prove to NFL teams/coaches/scouts that he has put his maturity issues behind him. It has been reported that he passed all 10 of his drug tests while at Tennessee Tech. In an off-season where guys like Tyrann Mathieu (failed over 10 drug tests) and Bacarri Rambo (suspended twice) have dropped a round (Rambo/Mathieu = 2nd round talents, projected in 3rd round), a 1st round talent might be a nice pick-up in the later part of round 2. Shanahan drafted WR Brandon Marshall in the 3rd round even with his character concerns but with two 100+ catch seasons, I'd say that paid off pretty well. Even though there were reports that Shanahan planned on cutting Marshall before he was unceremoniously fired, those reports were never confirmed. Each passing day, a different draftnik kindly answers questions about Redskins and secondary targets, but they always seem to end their analysis with "don't be shocked if the Redskins take a WR at #51 for Robert Griffin III. With Morgan still not showing pre-injury explosiveness and Hankerson not being able to put it all together yet (not to mention them both being in the last year of their contracts), the Redskins would do well to add a weapon across from Garcon that would eliminate the opponents ability to roll coverage towards him.

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