Draft Strategy--The Defense
Defensive tackle: The Redskins struck gold here with Cornelius Griffin coming aboard as a mid-level free agent and playing at a Pro Bowl level. Beside him are Joe Salave'a and Brandon Noble, both nice players and solid citizens but it's a spot that could be upgraded. Chances of taking a DT in the first round: Moderately low
Defensive end: Phillip Daniels had the opportunity to the equivalent of Griffin on the outside part of the line, but he lost a large part of his season to a groin injury and will be 32 when the season starts. Renaldo Wynn is 30, an average performer on his best days, and will cost $4 million against the cap this year and $4.5 million in 2006. The team's recent efforts to sign Cleveland's Courtney Brown show that the team believes that an upgrade is needed here. The chances of taking a DE in the first round: Moderate (will decrease to very low is Brown is signed).
Linebacker: The Redskins have said that they will move Lamar Marshall, who ably filled in for the injured LaVar Arrington at outside linebacker last year, into the middle. There, he will compete for playing time with Michael Barrow, if Barrow survives the June 1 turk. It's possible that the team would look to upgrade here, but even the best-rated inside linebacker prospects would be a terrific reach in the first round. With Arrington and Marcus Washington on the outside, the Redskins are set there. Chances of taking a LB in the first round: very low.
Cornerback: The departure of Fred Smoot via free agency certainly is of concern. Joe Gibbs has proclaimed that Walt Harris, the nickel back last year, is capable of starting. Capable, certainly, but can he work on an island in Gregg Williams' blitzing defense for 16 games? In addition, moving Harris into the starting lineup leaves the likes of Garnell Wilds and the dreaded Ade Jimoh as the available depth at the position. Chances of taking a CB in the first round: high
Safety: After having invested a sizeable free agent contract in Matt Bowen two years ago and the fifth overall pick in Sean Taylor at the position, it's not likely that the Skins will look here. Chances of taking a safety in the first round: very low.
Draft Strategy: The Offense
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