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NFL Draft: Mariota part of Redskins best and worst case scenarios

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NFL Draft: Mariota part of Redskins best and worst case scenarios

Looking at the best and worst cases for the Washington Redskins, New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles and Baltimore Ravens in the 2015 NFL Draft. 

Redskins

Best case, first round (5): Somehow Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota slips to five, leaving GM Scot McCloughan with an amazing trade chip. Seemingly the Jets (6), Browns (12), Texans (16) and yes, the Eagles (20) would all be interested. Let the bidding war begin. Same applies with USC DL Leonard Williams, who is considered by many the best player in the draft, but at a position Washington fortified this off-season. If we're talking about using the pick, Florida edge rusher Dante Fowler.

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Worst case, first round: Top four picks in some order are Florida State QB Jameis Winston, Mariota, Williams, Fowler. Takes away best trade down scenarios unless someone must have receivers Amari Cooper (Alabama) or Kevin White (West Virginia). The remaining edge rushers have significant upside, but come with greater risk than Fowler. Clemson's Vic Beasley wouldn't feel like a value selection at five. Actually, want to know the real worst case scenario? Washington lands Mariota or Winston, but doesn't simultaneously deal Robert Griffin III. Even the Kardashians would blanch at the relentless soap opera-y coverage on deck.

Best case, second round (38): One of the top offensive linemen slip. Best bet might Florida State's Cam Erving, the top-rated center in the draft who played all over the line with the Seminoles.

Worst case, second round: Don't be surprised if McCloughan selects a quarterback in the draft. Stockpile those passers, that's his move and it's good one.  Just don't hope it's this early.

Giants

Best case, first round (9): Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson. New York' top defensive needs exist at defensive tackle and safety, but the board doesn't line up that way. Adding a pass rusher is the happy medium and adding a speed force like Beasley would make Giants fans happy.

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Worst case, first round: Other than simply making a bad pick not sure I see a "worst case" for the Giants based on the needs and the board. Taking the first offensive tackle would arguably be a 'bad" move from a value standpoint since interesting options like D.J. Humphries and La'el Collins are likely available 10-plus picks later.

Eagles

Best case, first round (20): Perhaps if there are simultaneous runs on offense linemen, receivers and front-7 types, Michigan State corner Trae Waynes tumbles into the Eagles range. For a team that lost Jeremy Maclin and DeSean Jackson over the last year, landing Central Florida wide receiver Breshad Perriman also qualifies based on some of the pundit love out there for the big target with 4.25 speed.

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Worst case: Don't come away with sincere help in the first two rounds for a secondary in need of talent. Also, no matter how tempting Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon is and no matter how much coach Chip Kelly covets running backs, the Eagles cannot take another high-asset option.

Fun case: Kelly sends an armada of picks and players to a team owning a top five selection so he can draft his former Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota. Go big or go home.

Cowboys

Best case, first round (27): Even with Greg Hardy, Dallas needs more help along the defensive line. Not everyone loves Washington nose tackle Danny Shelton as his glacier slow 40-time at the combine indicates he could be only a two-down player. Still, the Cowboys ranked near the bottom in several rushing defense categories last season. Texas DL Malcom Brown and Florida State's Eddie Goldman also work.

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Worst case: Once upon a time the Cowboys took a chance on a talented wide receiver with off-the-field concerns. Though bumps along the way and possibly still to come, Dez Bryant worked out. Perhaps Dorial Green-Beckham will as well. The 6-foot-5 Green-Beckham is a freaky prospect with size and speed and plenty of baggage. Dallas could use receiver help, but the defense needs far more attention. The organization also doesn't need a problem child in round one, but if owner Jerry Jones falls in love...

Ravens

Best case, first round (26): Are teams really planning to draft Toddy Gurley in the top 15? Projections for the Georgia running back soared over the last couple of weeks despite his recovery from a serious knee injury and the trend of no round one backs in recent years. There is no denying Gurley's talent. If the rise is a smokescreen, perhaps the Ravens benefit if he's there late in the first.

Worst case: Track record says Ozzie Newsome won't botch this selection. Taking strong safety Landon Collins would boost the run defense and we know Newsome likes players from Alabama. It would also be an admission that Matt Elam hasn't worked out. Baltimore can't ignore wide receivers during the first 3-4 rounds.

RELATED: [Is a Redskins trade down from pick No. 5 inevitable?]

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—All-Redskins mock, fast-fading interest in Dez

Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—All-Redskins mock, fast-fading interest in Dez

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, April 21, five days before the 2018 NFL draft.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington

Should the Redskins pursue Dez Bryant? This topic was one like a meteor, very hot for a short period of time before it quickly faded out. It started to heat up as soon as the Cowboys cut Dez (about a month too late) and when it was reported that he wanted to play against Dallas twice a year it really picked up steam. But then people started to actually think and figured out that signing Bryant didn’t make much sense for the Redskins. Add to that the reports that the Redskins had no interest and would not look into signing Dez in the future and the Redskins fans quickly lost enthusiasm for the topic.

Seven-round Redskins mock draft—I think that most Redskins fans would be happy with this mock. Well, I’ll say some Redskins fans, most is a pretty strong word in this case. 

Is the draft pool deep enough for the Redskins to trade back? There is plenty of talk about the Redskins trading down in the first round to recoup the third-round pick they gave up in the Alex Smith trade. But they need to be careful. Many consider the draft to be top heavy and they may lose their chance to pick up an impact player if they trade back too far. The question then becomes one of quality vs. quantity. 

Three questions as offseason workouts get underway—There will be plenty more questions that we can ask about this team. But we don’t really know what to ask before the draft, particularly when it comes to the defensive line and running back. One the personnel settle into place we will know what we don’t know. 

Tweet of the week

On Chris Cooley’s thought that the Redskins might try to trade back and get Da’Ron Payne in the draft and the use the assets obtained to move up to get Derrius Guice. 

This is related to the questions about trading back. On paper it looks like a good idea, assuming the Redskins want Payne. We’re pretty sure they would like to have Guice but we haven’t heard as much about the Alabama defensive lineman. 

I had many reply that Guice won’t be there in the second round. It’s possible, perhaps even likely, but you just don’t know. There was zero chance that Jonathan Allen would be there at No. 17 last year, right? 

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

Timeline  

Days until:

—OTAs start (5/22) 31
—Training camp starts (7/26) 96
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 141

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Redskins' schedule "rest disparity" is very fair in 2018

Redskins' schedule "rest disparity" is very fair in 2018

The NFL started taking into account a new factor when putting together its schedule this year. The concept is called rest disparity. It stems from a complaint made by the Giants last year. And, of course, when the Giants have a cold, the NFL sneezes and immediately does whatever it takes to cure the cold. 

Here is how Peter King laid it out this morning on the MMQB:

Last year, I heard the Giants were not pleased with their schedule because they felt they were too often playing teams more rested than they were. In consecutive October weeks, they played teams coming off byes, for instance. The NFL calculated a figure for every team based on the number of combined days of rest for their foes or for the team, calculating, for instance, in those two weeks, the Giants were a minus-14 (minus-seven for each of the foes, Seattle and Denver, coming off byes). In all, by my math, the Giants were a league-worst minus-22 in “rest disparity.”

So the schedule makers worked to minimize the rest disparity this year. According to King, the worst rest disparity in the league this year is minus-11. The Giants are minus-eight. 

The question that Redskins fans will have immediately here is if the Giants’ rest disparity was reduced at the expense of the team in burgundy and gold. The answer that will surprise many is no. 

The Redskins rest disparity in 2018 will be either minus-one or zero. The variance is due to the possibility that their Week 16 game in Tennessee will be flexed to a Saturday game (see details here). If the game stays on Sunday, they will be at minus-one in rest disparity. If it gets moved, they will have had exactly as much rest over the course of the season as did their opponents, in aggregate. 

If you're interested in the nitty-gritty, here is how it breaks down. In eight or nine of their games, they will have had the same amount of rest as their opponents. They play one game coming off of their bye, a Monday night game in New Orleans. The Saints play the previous Sunday, giving Washington a plus-seven in days of rest. That is canceled out when they play the Falcons in Week 9 after Atlanta’s bye. 

Due to their Thanksgiving game, they get three extra days off going into their Week 13 Monday night game in Philadelphia. Two weeks later the Jaguars will have those three extra days of rest when they host the Redskins, having played on Thursday in Week 14.

They lose a day relative to their opponents coming off of those Monday night games against the Saints and Eagles. The Redskins get an extra day prior to visiting the Giants in Week 8 as New York has a Monday night game in Week 7. 

So far, that comes to minus-one in rest disparity. That will remain in place if they play the Titans on Sunday, December 23. If the game is flexed to Saturday, they will gain a day of rest on the Eagles in Week 17, zeroing out the rest disparity for the season. 

More Redskins

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