Evan Silva (@EvanSilva) is the Senior Football Editor for Rotoworld's NFL Page, and Josh Norris (@JoshNorris) leads Rotoworld's college football and NFL draft coverage. Together, they're breaking down every team's biggest needs and offering potential draft-day solutions.
For a breakdown on every team, check out the team-by-team draft preview schedule.
No. 1 Team Need: Running Back
2015 third-round pick Matt Jones teased during his rookie preseason before averaging 3.40 yards per carry in the real games and committing five fumbles, losing four. There were indications the Redskins wanted Jones to take over as their workhorse back, but he simply wasn't effective enough to steal the job from Alfred Morris. Oft-injured scatback Chris Thompson and Silas Redd (ACL/MCL) are Nos. 2 and 3 on the current depth chart. The Redskins seem likely to spend another early-round draft pick on a running back.
No. 2 Team Need: Offensive Line
The Redskins return three quality starters up front in LT Trent Williams, RG Brandon Scherff and RT Morgan Moses. Left guard is a possible need area, though Washington has two in-house options in rising third-year LG Spencer Long and injury-riddled Shawn Lauvao. Center is a definite need with undersized C Kory Lichtensteiger ill-suited for OL coach Bill Callahan's power-running scheme. The 2015 Redskins couldn't run the ball at all, averaging an NFC-worst 3.65 yards per carry. Interior line play deserved much of the blame.
No. 3 Team Need: Defensive Line
Scot McCloughan impressed in his first year as Redskins GM, but his roster still needs quite a bit of work. More talent is needed at defensive back and inside linebacker, and arguably wide receiver with neither Pierre Garcon nor DeSean Jackson locks to be with the team beyond 2016. Improving Washington's defensive line should still be a big draft-weekend priority. The Redskins need a starting nose tackle and a young interior gap shooter to bring pressure in sub-packages.
Norris' Mock Draft
Round 1 (21): DL Jonathan Bullard, Florida - An upfield disruptor who can play virtually any alignment in specific situations and is also an outstanding athlete? I think Scot McCloughan will like what he sees in Bullard and continue to build the front seven. I loved Preston Smith last year, and there’s a lot to like about Bullard’s game. I could see Washington doubling up at the position in the top two rounds.
Round 2 (53): RB Jordan Howard, Indiana - Some might think this is a little early, but I could see Howard being the second running back off the board. I certainly don’t evaluate him as that, but Howard wants to get upfield and runs the slalom well.
Round 3 (84): DT Austin Johnson, Penn State - A true run stuffing nose tackle who is stuck at the line of scrimmage. There will be a couple of games where Johnson presses his opponent backwards, but Johnson’s real role is to occupy. He does that well.
Round 4 (120): C Jack Allen, Michigan State - I absolutely love Jack Allen’s game. However, his 6-foot-1, 294 pound frame could scare teams off until the third day. We have seen similar reasoning in the past. Despite that size, Allen is tremendous at anchoring against larger defensive lineman.
Round 5 (158): CB James Bradberry, Samford - There’s a chance Bradberry goes off the board much earlier than many expect. He has 33-plus inch arms, is an outstanding athlete and played well in the games I watched. He has starter upside.
Round 6 (187): WR Rashard Higgins, Colorado State - “No way. Not possible.” The same would have been said with Tre McBride and others in the past prior to their drafts. Are we sure Higgins can’t last until the middle to late portions of day three? Teams could be scared off by the limited athleticism he displayed at the NFL Combine.
Round 7 (232): LB Tyler Matakevich, Temple - Matakevich is a limited player who offers depth on an NFL roster at inside linebacker.
Round 7 (242): QB Cody Kessler, USC - Kessler can recognize open receivers pre- and post--snap and get them the ball, although he lacks real “arm talent.”
Redskins Current Offensive Depth Chart
QB: Kirk Cousins
RB: Matt Jones
WR: DeSean Jackson
WR: Pierre Garcon
WR: Jamison Crowder
TE: Jordan Reed
LT: Trent Williams
LG: Spencer Long
RG: Brandon Scherff
RT: Morgan Moses
Redskins Current Defensive Depth Chart
LE: Chris Baker
RE: Stephen Paea
NT: Kedric Golston
ILB: Perry Riley
ILB: Will Compton
OLB: Ryan Kerrigan
OLB: Preston Smith
LCB: Bashaud Breeland
RCB: Chris Culliver
FS: DeAngelo Hall
SS: Kyshoen Jarrett