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Report: Mariota likely to be gone before Redskins pick


Report: Mariota likely to be gone before Redskins pick

As the draft gets closer and closer it looks more and more like the Redskins will not be faced with the choice of whether or not they should take quarterback Marcus Mariota with the fifth overall pick.

In his Monday Morning Quarterback column this morning, Peter King said that from what he can gather, the Titans, who hold the No. 2 pick in the draft, will either take Mariota or deal the pick to someone who wants the Heisman Trophy winner.

King said that the Titans scouted Mariota heavily this year and the feeling in the organization is that he would be able to make a successful transition into being an NFL-style pocket passer. He said that his “gut feeling” is that that the Titans will take Mariota rather than trade the pick.

But it doesn’t really matter to the Redskins if the Titans end up with Mariota or if another team takes him. The dynamics are the same if he goes anywhere in the top four picks. There would ripple effects that reach the Redskins:

—They won’t have to decide if they are going to take a successor to Robert Griffin III this week. Although the Redskins could take a quarterback later in the draft, the selection of Mariota would almost dictate an immediate departure for Griffin to avoid the circus that would accompany two young Heisman winners competing for the same job. Any quarterback taken later in the draft would need time to develop, giving Griffin more time to, well, develop.

—Mariota will not be around for the Redskins to dangle as trade bait. Although other players could be attractive targets that a team might want to trade up for, a possible franchise quarterback on the board can make teams give up an irrational amount of compensation (see Redskins, 2012). But Fowler, Williams, Cooper, wide receiver Kevin White and perhaps even Beasley could get Scot McCloughan’s phone ringing. The last two years, teams have traded into the top five to get an edge rusher and a wide receiver so if there isn’t a quarterback worth trading up for on the board all trade hopes will not be lost.

—The Redskins are likely to have at least one of the top three players in the draft on the board when the No. 5 pick comes up. One possible scenario if Jameis Winston goes first to the Bucs as is widely expected and Mariota goes second to someone, the Jaguars, picking third, could take defensive lineman Leonard Williams and the Raiders might go with wide receiver Amari Cooper. That would leave the Redskins with their choice of the top two edge rushers in the draft, Dante Fowler Jr. or Vic Beasley. If the Jaguars take Fowler, Williams could fall into the Redskins’ lap. In any case, a very good player who would not otherwise have been available will be there for Washington is Mariota goes in the top four picks.  

RELATED: [Redskins leaning toward committing to RG3 in 2016]

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Need to Know: Redskins player quick hitters—Offensive starters

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Need to Know: Redskins player quick hitters—Offensive starters

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, March 21, 36 days before the NFL draft.  

Redskins starters quick hitters—offense

The last couple of days here I looked at how the depth charts are shaping up with a little bit of commentary (offense, defense). Today and tomorrow I’ll take a closer look at the starters with some quick hitters about each one, starting today with the offense.

QB Alex Smith—The deal is done, and the Redskins have their man for five years at $22.2 million per year or, if they prefer, three years at $23.7 million per. It seems like most fans are behind him but there will have to be a few more wins than losses this fall for that to become permanent.

RB Samaje Perine—He got better as the year went on, averaging nearly a half yard per carry more in the last seven games compared to the first nine. But the 3.4 average per carry certainly did not stop both Doug Williams and Jay Gruden from talking about drafting a running back early.

TE Jordan Reed—According to reports, he is rehabbing well from the hamstring and toe injuries that severely limited him last year. Still, expect him to be kept in bubble wrap until training camp and even then, his action may be limited.

WR Josh Doctson—Did Kirk Cousins look away from Doctson too often, lacking the confidence in him to let him go get the 50-50 balls? Will Smith have more confidence in Doctson? The answers to those questions may determine if the third-year receiver breaks out in 2018 or he continues to tease with flashes of ability.

WR Paul Richardson—He’s capable of the acrobatic catch, which should be fun to watch. Richardson was good with Russell Wilson on the off-schedule plays, maybe he can do the same with Smith.

WR Jamison Crowder—I guess it’s fair to say he had an off year in 2017 but his receiving yardage only dropped by 60 yards from 2016. It will be interesting to see if they keep him in as the punt returner after he averaged 6.3 yards per return (23rd of 25 qualifiers) last year.

LT Trent Williams—The six-time Pro Bowler is still in the relatively early stages of recovering from surgery to the knee that kept him from practicing from about Week 6 on. Don’t look for him until training camp and even then, the early workload is likely to be light.

LG Arie Kouandjio—This is the one offensive position that remains up in the air. Kouandjio has shown some grit as a spot starter but I don’t think the organization views him as a 16-game starter.

C Chase Roullier—Shortly after Roullier got the starting job when Spencer Long went out injured, Jay Gruden said that Roullier would be the Redskins’ center “for a long time”. There is no reason to doubt that at this point in time.

RG Brandon Scherff—His concern no longer is trying to live up to having been the fifth pick of the draft. Scherff has to play well enough to justify his 2019 option-year salary, which will be in the vicinity of $13 million.

RT Morgan Moses—He had surgery to repair his ankles, which were an issue most of last season. Still, he didn’t miss a start. Like Williams, even if he’s ready for training camp, don’t expect to see a whole lot of him.

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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Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 27
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 129
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 173

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Redskins make contract offer to pass rusher Pernell McPhee, per report


Redskins make contract offer to pass rusher Pernell McPhee, per report

Free agent pass rusher Pernell McPhee visited the Redskins on Monday, and by Tuesday night a report emerged that Washington offered the veteran outside linebacker a contract.

Last week, Trent Murphy signed with the Buffalo Bills and things remain uncertain between the Redskins and Junior Galette. That means the organization has a need for an edge rushing linebacker, and that's exactly the role McPhee can play. 

A 29-year-old that played the last three seasons with the Bears, McPhee posted 14 sacks while in Chicago. Prior to his time with the Bears, McPhee was a solid contributor on some good Ravens teams. 


His best season in Baltimore came in 2014 when he posted 7.5 sacks. That's also the last season McPhee played a full 16 game schedule. He's missed 12 games over the last three years in Chicago. 

McPhee could provide the Redskins with solid veteran depth at outside linebacker, and he's also considered a plus defender against the run. With Ryan Kerrigan and Preston Smith cemented as the starting outside linebackers, if signed, McPhee would pair up with Ryan Anderson on Washington's second unit. At 6-foot-2 and 275 lbs., McPhee carries more weight on his frame than either Kerrigan or Smith. 

Pro Football Focus gave McPhee a strong grade for the 2017 season. He notched a +11.5 and ranked 13th out of 46 outside linebackers graded. For comparison, Broncos star Von Miller ranked 1st at +57, Kerrigan ranked 8th at +22.9 and Galette ranked 10th at +16.2.

It's unclear what a move for McPhee would mean between the Redskins and Galette, but it's hard to imagine it helps.

Free agent Johnathan Hankins also visited Washington on Monday, and while he plays an interior defensive line position different from McPhee, it's also unclear what this offer would do to any negotiations between the Redskins and Hankins. 

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