The Washington Redskins’ selections in the 2013 NFL Draft were pretty well-received, and for good reason. Across the board, they found high-upside players that filled needs, and some of whom have the chance to start immediately.
That said, every year it seems like you can go back and look at the draft as a whole, and think “The Skins could have had Player X at that draft spot,” or “the Redskins really missed out on this superstar.” The amount of those comments has decreased since the Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen regime replaced Vinny Cerrato’s, but just about every team could have always had a better draft in hindsight. So let’s have some fun and take a look at a few players in the 2013 Draft that Redskins may kick themselves for not drafting.
For the sake of argument, I will only include players that were available when the Redskins made their first pick at 51 overall.
Margus Hunt, DE, Cincinnati Bengals (53rd overall): There were several good reasons to pass on Hunt as the team’s first selection of the draft. He’s 26 years old, he didn’t fill a need the way cornerback David Amerson did and he wasn’t as consistently dominant on tape as his size suggested he should be. But what if the man with the 6-foot-7, 280-pound frame pans out? What if he honed his technique and learned enough of the game’s subtleties to become a star in the league? He certainly has the athleticism that screams “star power,” and if he polishes his game, his upside is through the roof.
Arthur Brown, MLB, Baltimore Ravens (56th overall): He’s a three-down linebacker with the speed and instincts to not only cover tight ends down the seam, but thump running backs behind the line of scrimmage. He flies all over the field and could immediately help the Redskins in nickel and dime packages while being more than an adequate eventual successor to London Fletcher. Instead, he will be succeeding another great linebacker in Baltimore.
Marcus Lattimore, RB, San Francisco 49ers (131st overall): The good news is, with the superb runner the Redskins have in Alfred Morris, no one faults them for passing on Marcus Lattimore. This is especially the case if Lattimore never fully recovers after suffering one of the most gruesome leg injuries of recent memory. But if he does, he could be special, and 31 teams not named the San Francisco 49ers are going to kick themselves for passing on a dynamic young runner.
Ricky Wagner, OT, Baltimore Ravens (168th overall): He comes from Wisconsin, a school which seems to manufacture offensive linemen, and is a player who had plenty of success paving the way for Montee Ball and keeping Russell Wilson upright (Although, it should be noted that Wilson spent a lot of time keeping Wilson upright by evading pressure). Wagner is not without his own list of concerns, but is considered a high-ceiling/low-floor prospect who excels in run blocking. He might not be a day-one starter, but the depth at the right tackle position is something worth addressing. How long can Tyler Polumbus be entrenched as the team’s starting right tackle?
Ryan Swope, WR Arizona Cardinals (174th overall): As reliable as he’s been, Santana Moss isn’t getting any younger, and the Redskins could benefit with some more options for the slot. Jordan Reed and Pierre Garcon could potentially fit there for a few snaps a game, but if they keep having the man that position, it would take away from other areas they could line up and help the team. Swope, with a clean bill of health, could fill that gap and give Robert Griffin III another viable target.