I cannot decide what impresses me more, the Washington Redskins passing up rookie quarterbacks, none of whom could help them this year, or Washington angling for all those extra draft picks. The team with a perennial shortage of picks has 14 in this draft. More on that later.
With the 41st pick, The Redskins selected Clemson DL Jarvis Jenkins. It was the team's second player to be added to the defense and the second building block player--lineman or linebacker--added this draft.
Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen don't act as though the 'Skins are a player away from the Super Bowl.
Like the Redskins first round draft pick Ryan Kerrigan, Jenkins was a senior. Better yet, he was a three-year starter for Clemson that has become something of a factory for NFL-caliber defensive lineman.
Jenkins is a self-described run-stopper who knows how to fill gaps and collapse pocket. That would describe Philip Daniels, too.
NFL Draft Scout describes him thus:
"Jenkins' unique blend of size, strength and surprising athleticism makes him one of the most position and scheme-versatile defensive linemen in the draft. He won't excite fans with his ability to sack the quarterback, but can pressure the pocket, block kicks (Clemson's career leader with four) and hold up nicely against the run. Whether being scouted as a defensive tackle in the 4-3 or moved out to defensive end in the 3-4 alignment, Jenkins rates quietly rates among the more versatile defensive linemen in the 2011 draft.
Head coach Mike Shanahan said, "He has pretty good size, good quickness, explosion."I like the way he reacts and plays the run. He has the skills we look for."
Here's a nugget gleaned from Jenkins Clemson Tigers profile page: his position coach was Dan Brooks who was Albert Haynesworth's position coach.
Greg Trippiedi ranked Jenkins 87th on his 2011 Draft Big Board.
Optimum Scouting ranked Jenkins 115 on its 2011 Top 400.
See Jenkins Clemson Tigers profile page here.
The Redskins traded the 49th Draft pick to the Indianapolis Colts for the 53rd and 159th picks. The Colts used the 49th pick to draft OG Ben Ijalana.
The Redskins traded the 53rd pick to the Chicago Bears for the 62nd and the 127th pick (fourth round). They traded the 62nd pick for the 79th pick, and additional picks in the fifth and seventh rounds.
When Washington got back to drafting, they selected Miami wide receiver Leonard Hankerson who broke Michael Irvin's single-season touchdown mark with 13 scoring receptions in 2010. Hankerson was a senior and team leader like all of the Redskins' selectees thus far.
Hankerson is working with Andre' Johnson and Hall of Fame candidate Chris Carter, who happened to be his high school position coach, to prep for the pros. NFL Draft Scout compares Hankerson to former Vikings Sidney Rice and a good fit for the West Coast Offense.
Greg Trippiedi ranked Hankerson 22nd on his 2011 NFL Draft Big Board.
Optimum Scouting ranked Hankerson 19th on his 2011 Top 400.
For Hankerson's profile on hurricanesports.cstv.com, look here.
Another Kudo to the front office for not taking one of those slick skill players who look good on paper but without proven, long-term performance at the collegiate level.
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The Minnesota Vikings selected Florida State quarterback Christian Ponder in the first round of the NFL Draft. The Vikings were the target of those Donovan McNabb makes sense stories in the days leading up to the Draft. Scratch Minnesota from the list of McNabb's new home.
Scratch Carolina, Tennessee and Jacksonville, too. All of them selected rookie quarterbacks with their first round picks.
The still leaves Buffalo, Arizona, San Francisco and Seattle as possibilities. Add Washington to that list. The Redskins did not move up in a try for Jake Locker. Nor did they stay put for a shot at Blaine Gabbert or Ponder.
What gives? Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan said a lot of things about McNabb, much of it silly. But coach never, ever said that McNabb will never, ever play in an burgundy and gold uniform again.
We all just assume that because McNabb's treatment at the hands of the Shanahan strikes us as intolerable. About as intolerable as Jim Zorn having to put up with a consultant out of retirement to call the plays that he (Zorn) designed. Why do people put up with that sort of thing?
Money talks, my friend.
What was Atlanta thinking?
The Falcons traded their 2011 first round (27th overall), second round and fourth round and 2012 first and fourth round draft picks for the Cleveland Browns' first round pick (sixth overall) and used that pick to snag Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones.
Jones projected as a mid-first round selectee but Atlanta was taking no chances. (What? Couldn't get through to Bruce Allen?) No matter how good Jones plays, he can never live up to what it cost Atlanta to get him.
Redskins Hog Heaven's Greg Trippiedi selected for the Dallas Cowboys in Bloguin's Mock Draft. Trippiedi selected OL Tyron Smith in the mock. The real Cowboys selected Tyron Smith in the real Draft. Only one thing to say about that.
How to manage your team's Draft
If you like those Draft Day trade-down scenarios, study the moves of Bill Belichick who runs a Draft 101 clinic every year. New England enters every Draft with more choices than anyone, it seems. Belichick sets these things up well before Draft Day. This year they traded down for New Orleans second round pick--the Patriots third pick of the round (watch for another trade)--and for the Saints 2012 first round pick.
Belichick is smarter than you, or me, or certain others I could name. He doesn't trade picks for players. He trades players for picks well before Draft Day. Thus, you never hear of New England trading down for more picks. They already have picks to move down, up or sideways for the optimum flexiblility to reload the team. The owners should have hired Belichick to manage their side of the labor negotiation.
Maybe Denver got it right this time
Mike Shanahan took the hit for the Denver Broncos defensive failures in 2008. Owner Pat Bowlen replaced offense-minded Shanahan with (wait for it)...not-ready-for-prime-time offensive-minded rookie coach.Josh McDaniels who led the Broncos over a cliff --clueless, Jay Cutlerless and 4-12 last season. The Broncos replaced McDaniels with John Fox, maybe not the best coach out there, but seasoned and defense-minded. The first draft pick of the Fox-Elway partership was well regarded OLB Von Miller.
Moves that address your team's problems. Clever. Should have thought of that two years ago.
What accuracy problem?
All the talk about pass accuracy and lost income by staying at the University of Washington for his senior year turned into pre-Draft vapor for Jake Locker. He was the second quarterback taken in yesterday's Draft.. The Titans took him with the eighth overall pick.
Best of all, there is no rookie scale in place yet thanks to the labor conflict that might have hurt him. That's still to come, but now all the negotiating leverage is with the players.
First, congratulations to Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen for eschewing the glitz of a rookie glamour-guy quarterback in favor of a value player who can help the Washington Redskins win now.
Second, kudos for pulling off a trade down deal.
The Redskins went defense in the NFL Draft after swapping placed with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The 'Skins selected Purdue DE Ryan Kerrigan with their first pick (16th overall) and they get the Jaguars' second round pick (49th overall).
The Jags used the Redskins No. 10 pick to select quarterback Blaine Gabbert, who Washington might have taken if they held on to the spot.
Funny quirky fact: Gabbert was widely expected to go earlier than 10th, but Kerrigan was a consensus 16th pick. See the Mayock Mock, Optimum Scouting Mock, Bloguin Mock, NFL.com Mock. Those sites expected Jacksonville to select Kerrigan and Washington to jump at the chance for Gabbert.
Greg Trippiedi ranked Kerrigan 15th on his big board. Talk about consistency!
Quick Kerrigan Profile from Redskins.com
"Kerrigan, 6-3 and 267 pounds, was among the elite pass rushers available in the NFL Draft.
"As a defensive end for the Boilermakers, Kerrigan posted double-digit sacks each of the past two years--11 as a junior in 2009 and 12.5 as a senior. He finished his college career with 37.5 sacks.
"Head coach Mike Shanahan expects to transition Kerrigan to outside linebacker in the Redskins' 3-4 scheme."
Read the rest of the story here.
College nickname: Superman, for his strength and work effort. Senior who has played since his true freshman year.
Purdue Boilermaker profile here.
The Redskins will introduce Kerrigan at a news conference at Noon EDT Friday at Redskins Park.
The only certainty about mock drafts is that NFL general managers do not participate in them. Why should they? They are, or ought to be, too busy to pay any attention to them. Plus, they get to do the real thing. They don't need no mock.
There is a certain wisdom of the crowd in mocks. They are measures of the flow of the first round. To help you get ready for the fun tonight, here are a few mocks to check out:
The Bloguin 2011 Mock Draft - Has the Redskins selecting wide receiver Julio Jones. Redskins Hog Heaven participates in this mock.
DC Pro Sports Report 2011 Mock Draft Database - Tracks 384 mock drafts. DE Robert Quinn is the consensus pick.
Live Ball Sports 2011 NFL Draft Big Board - Big Boards rank NFL talent. They are not mock drafts. This board was put together by Redskins Hog Heaven contributor Greg Trippiedi who prides himself on independent analysis. Every NFL team has a big board. Greg concludes that only four players in this class are true can't-miss-from-day-one "elites." Cam Newton, Blaine Gabbert, Robert Quinn and Julio Jones do not make that list.
Optimum Scouting's 2011 Mock Draft - Allows for theoretic trades. Thus, Optimum Scouting has the New England Patriots selecting Julio Jones with the 10th pick after moving up to Washington's spot in exchange for the Pats' spare first rounder (17th overall) and two third-round picks. The 'Skins trade that pick to St. Louis for the 14th pick and select QB Jake Locker. Whew! Only the son of George Allen could cook up that kind of deal. (Kudos to Optimum Scouting for thinking through this scenario.)
SB Nation's 2011 Mock Draft - SB Nation is an astounding story as a sports media giant growing from citizen sports writers. We'd have no credibility if we did not include their mock. The guys at HogsHaven.com selected DE Robert Quinn.
The fun begins at 8:00 PM EDT tonight. Assuming teams have about 20 minutes between selections, the Redskins should make their selection around 10:00 PM. A prior commitment keeps me away from technology at that time (I question my priorities), so look for recaps late tonight or early tomorrow.
Twitter (which has emerged as a major channel for up to the second news) carries reports from credible sources of teams looking to trade down.
More teams want to trade down every year than to trade up. THIS year, with all the extra-legal wrangling, teams may have a concern that rookies will demand wealth beyond their talent to join the league because, you know, the league shut down free agent movement and teams cannot sign veterans. Trading down is a back door way to control costs.
Owners are so poor at controlling cost.