The Redskins have been much more secretive about their pre-draft visits under GM Scot McCloughan than they have been under previous regimes. When we published our list of pre-draft visits yesterday, we only had names for 17 of the team's 30 allotted visits. Now we can add the best wide receiver in this year's draft to that list. Aaron Wilson from the National Football Post listed a number of team's that hosted Alabama WR Amari Cooper(6'1", 211 lbs), and the Washington Redskins are one of them. He also notes that 9 out of the 10 team's picking at the top of the draft have hosted the wide receiver.
Sources: Amari Cooper visited Buccaneers, Titans, Jaguars, Redskins, Jets, Bears, Falcons, Giants, Rams, Browns: https://t.co/1AZMm5wUNl— Aaron Wilson (@RavensInsider) April 24, 2015
Cooper and West Virginia wide receiver Kevin White are competing to be the first wide receiver drafted. There was a major discrepancy between the official 40-yard dash time listed for Cooper at the NFL scouting combine and what he actually ran at Lucas Oil Stadium. Although Cooper is officially listed with a 4.42 clocking, according to NFL sources, scouts clocked him as fast as 4.31, 4.35 and 4.37 seconds on their stopwatches. NFL teams go by their own times in determining draft prospects' speed.
Cooper is expected to be the 1st WR selected this year, and could be a top 5 pick, but is definitely expected to go in the top 10. There have been reports on teams like the San Francisco 49ers who have fallen in love with Cooper, and are interested in trading up to secure him. If Cooper is still on the board, the Redskins will know whether they want to draft him, or attempt to trade out of the #5 spot. Teams have traded up in the Top 10 for a WR each of the last 4 years, and it could happen again this year.
Scot McCloughan could also be seriously looking at Amari Cooper as the Redskins future #1 WR, and the best player available when they pick. The Redskins situation has been discussed at length during the offseason. The Redskins top 3 WRs will cost the team $22.7 million this year, and $24.45 million next year. Drafting Cooper this year allows them to move on from one of the top two(Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson), and/or Andre Roberts. The Redskins haven't had success drafting and developing wide receivers which, like other positions on the team, has cause them to constantly turn to free agency and trades to find players. Drafting Cooper gives them an elite WR who will be under team control for up to 5 years.
Will Scot McCoulghan take Cooper if he is the best player available, or is he going to focus on rebuilding the trenches of the team before strengthening the skill positions?
[UPDATE: 4/24/15 7:30 pm] Multiple sources say Amari Cooper has not visited the Redskins.
Amari Cooper did meet with #Redskins at combine but was told three times this week no visit. Sometimes people lie. Who knows for sure.— Chris Russell (@Russellmania980) April 24, 2015
Just to piggyback on what @Russellmania980 has been saying : was told by pretty strong source that Amari cooper has not visited— John Keim (@john_keim) April 24, 2015