I am one of just many who feel the Redskins will have a “challenging” season in 2019. Things can certainly change a bit before the season starts, but I don’t see us being much better than 6-10 this year.
As much as I’ve been a Jay Gruden supporter since he was hired here as our head coach in 2014, I have a feeling that another bad season may force Dan Snyder to change it up. If Gruden is let go at the end of the 2019 season, the hunt for a new coach could be an interesting one - although I feel we may have our next leader already on the staff in newly appointed offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell.
Let’s assume for a minute that the front office is using 2019 as a “re-build year”. The re-build wouldn’t necessarily be a complete tear-down, but rather a re-model, focusing on acquiring younger play-making talent on both side of the ball.
This re-model has already begun, and it started on the defensive side of the football and Bruce Allen and company have set out to build the Alabama Wall on defense.
The Skins started to seriously address the defense when they selected Jonathan Allen in round one of the 2017 draft. They followed that up by selecting his former Alabama teammate in the first round of the 2018 draft. In a bold move halfway through last season, the Redskins claimed linebacker Reuben Foster, who had been cut by the San Francisco 49ers after another run-in with the law for Domestic Violence accusations (charges were later dropped). The Redskins feel Foster will be an integral part of this defense moving forward, as long as he can get his life on track. To continue in the Alabama tradition, the Skins made a bold move on the first day of free agency by signing former Giants and Crimson Tide safety Landon Collins to a mega-deal. Just 25 years old, Collins offers leadership, play-making ability and All-Pro talent to the back end of the defense. Youngsters like second year linebacker Shaun Dion Hamilton and EDGE rusher Ryan Anderson help to round out the Alabama Wall on defense. There is also rumors that the Skins would like to bring back safety HaHa Clinton-Dix, which would only strengthen that wall.
If the foundation is built on defense, than the Italian Marble and gable roof are needed to complete the offense. This is where a quarterback and wide receiver/tight ends come into play.
The Redskins desperately need a new franchise signal caller to build around. Case Keenum and Colt McCoy are helpful pieces, but they are only place-holders while the rest of the foundation is being set.
In this latest mock draft, I’ve decided to finish building the house before I add the Italian Marble to the entrance way. It may take a year to complete, but the finished product will be worth the wait.
2019 NFL Draft:
*Redskins trade pick 15 to the New England Patriots for pick 32, 56 and 2020 second round pick (Patriots select Drew Lock with pick 15).
RD 1(32) via trade with NE: Noah Fant TE Iowa
RD2(46): A.J. Brown WR Ole Miss
RD2(56) via trade with NE: Terry McLaurin WR Ohio St
RD3(76): Conner McGovern G PSU
RD3(96): Chase Winovich EDGE Michigan
RD5(153): Lonnie Johnson CB Kentucky
RD5(173): Kendall Joseph LB Clemson
RD6(206): Gardner Minshew QB Wash. St.
RD7(222): Derwin Gray T/G Maryland
RD7(253): Blace Brown CB Troy
For the sake of this article and mock draft, I’m prepared to roll with Keenum/McCoy at quarterback, while we look to get the pieces in place for 2020. It is in this draft that I hope to see the Redskins select their quarterback of the future under the guidance and leadership of our new head coach Kevin O’Connell.