Reporting Grant Paulsen
There isn’t a team with more first-round options than the Washington Redskins.
Head Coach Mike Shanahan said that there are two spots on his roster he doesn’t expect to upgrade this weekend: safety and tight end. But a player at almost every other position could be a possibility when Washington’s on the clock in the coming three days.
The Redskins pick at No. 10 in Thursday night’s first round and there’s little clarity as to what the team is considering doing.
The defensive line and the linebacking corps are certainly options, and it wouldn’t be much of a surprise to see the club select a quarterback, a wide receiver (Julio Jones) or a cornerback (Prince Amukamara).
Assuming the Redskins don’t trade down, the following is a list of three names you could hear Washington call with its opening selection:
Robert Quinn, OLB, University of North Carolina
*At 6-5 and 270 pounds, Quinn is widely considered the best 4-3 defensive end in the draft. If he’s on the board for the Redskins, they could grab him and convert him to play opposite Brian Orakpo as a rush-first outside linebacker.
Orakpo managed just 1.5 sacks after Week-7 last season, partially because offenses were able to key solely on him. Every Harrison needs a Woodley and that’s what Quinn could be for the Redskins.
Julio Jones, WR, Alabama
*The second best receiver in his draft class, Jones couples terrific size (6-4 and 211 pounds) with stellar speed and hands. He put on a show at the combine and would be a value selection at No. 10, even though wide receiver is not Washington’s foremost need.
If Jones is there it could present the Redskins with a chance to move down, but if they want to stay put and grab the best player on the board — the sure-handed, speedy receiver might be their guy.
Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
*Carlos Rogers and Phillip Buchanon are both free agents and DeAngelo Hall is a better play-maker than he is a shut-down, cover-corner. Hall and newly-signed safety OJ Atogwe are both handsomely paid and strong safety LaRon Landry is due for a pay-day some time in the coming year. With that all in mind, can you justify having top-paid talent at all four starting spots in your secondary?
If the Redskins don’t think they can re-sign Rogers and don’t mind spreading that much money around their defensive backfield, Amukamara could be in play.