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How low can the Redskins’ first-round pick go?

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How low can the Redskins’ first-round pick go?

If the season ended today (it doesn’t), the Redskins would draft 15th in the first round. If they lose to the Giants, their pick could go up as high as No. 13, depending on the results of other games. But if they win, an unlikely but possible combination of results could push their first pick all the way up to 19th.

The first thing to look at is the records of the teams who are near them in the draft order. The Redskins are 7-8 as are the Cardinals and Packers. Because of the one and only tiebreaker for draft order, which we’ll get into in a minute, the Redskins are slotted behind those teams.


Just behind the Redskins at 8-7 are four other teams. If the Redskins win on Sunday to and the 8-7 teams, which are the Chargers (who are at home vs. the Raiders), Cowboys (@ Eagles), Bills (@ Dolphins), and Lions (vs. Packers) all lose, the Redskins would slide all the way back to No. 19 in the first round.

Wait, what? Why would the Redskins fall behind the Chargers, who beat them, and the Cowboys, who beat them twice? Because while head-to-head results mean everything when it comes to sorting out playoff berths, they mean nothing when it comes to figuring out the draft order.

The one and only tiebreaker for draft position is strength of schedule. If two or more teams have the same record, the team with the strongest schedule picks last in that group. Everyone who has paid attention this season knows that the Redskins have played one of the toughest schedules in the NFL, with 10 games against teams that currently have winning records.

In fact, Washington played the strongest schedule in the NFL so far this year. And while the numbers will change after each team plays its final game, the Redskins can’t end up with a lower SOS than any of the other potential 8-8 teams.

That means that the Redskins would pick behind any other team that finishes 8-8. So if, say, the Cowboys lose and the Redskins and the other 8-7 teams win, Washington would pick 16th in the first round. For each loss registered by the other 8-7 teams, the Redskins slide back one more slot. If all four lose, they go to 19th.


The chances are that not all of the 8-7 teams will lose. The Chargers and Bills both need wins to keep their playoff hopes alive. The Eagles may rest starters or at least pull them early. The Lions are at home against Brett Hundley. So it’s possible that the Redskins could win and stay right where they are.

In any case, now you know the situation and you can choose to root for whatever team playing in MetLife Stadium on New Year’s Eve you want to.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.


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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.

After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.


Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.

Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.

His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.

In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.


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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

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