Deciphering McCloughan playbook leads to plans at 21

NFL analyst Mike Mayock shows he has a good read on the Redskins GM, which makes his take on Washington's first round plan intriguing.

In addition to sharing his take on Redskins QB Kirk Cousins Tuesday, NFL Draft analyst Mike Mayock discussed what general manager Scot McCloughan might do at No. 21.

"Their draft last year revealed who they are," the NFL Network analyst said during a conference call with reporters. "Brandon Scherff was the first pick, big, tough guy; Preston Smith was the second pick, another big, strong, tough outside linebacker type guy; Matt Jones, a big, thick tailback. Scotty McCloughan likes the bigger, tougher guys. That's who he wants to be, a big, physical team.

"Now, at 21 I think one of the biggest needs is in that defensive line, and it's a defensive line draft. We've already talked about that. He could get defensive linemen second, third, even fourth round, so would he look beyond that knowing there's security in defensive linemen deep in the draft?

'Would he look at say a corner at 21? To me that is a possibility. He could sit there and say, huh, is this kid from Clemson worth it, Mackensie Alexander at 31, what about Eli Apple, what about Artie Burns. I think there's some interesting corners that would come into that conversation, also."

The idea of waiting on defensive line is an angle we'll hit on more leading up to the draft. The logic make sense considering the number of prospects with 1-2 round round grades. Whether Terrance Knighton and Jason Hatcher return or not, Washington needs youth on the line. If McCloughan believes the likes of Apple or other corners provide a significant addition compared to others in later rounds, then going for secondary help in round one works knowing DL needs can be addressed soon after. 

[NFL Draft -- Film review: Eli Apple]

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