Prior to the Senior Bowl, most Redskins fans focused on the group of rookie quarterbacks that would be available in the 2018 NFL Draft as the team faced an uncertain future with Kirk Cousins. In the month since, the Redskins traded for Alex Smith and locked up their quarterback situation until at least 2020.
With Smith in the fold and the NFL world headed to Indianapolis this week for the Scouting Combine, the Redskins are no longer hunting for passers. That means the Washington front office can look at a variety of first-round talent in Indy, and with the 13th pick, have a reasonable chance to get a number of tremendous talents.
NFL Network draft guru Mike Mayock held a conference call with reporters on Monday, and much of what he said sounded like good news for the Redskins. The 2018 QB crop has four names that sound like potential Top 10 picks: Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, Baker Mayfield and Josh Allen.
Here's why that matters in Washington: The more QBs taken in the Top 10 means the more a potential "plug and play" talent slips to the Redskins at 13.
Mayock identified five names as the plug and play type, which means the kind of player that can step in from Day One in the NFL and deliver at a high level. The names: Alabama DB Minkah Fitzpatrick, Notre Dame G Quenton Nelson, Washington NT Vita Vea, NC State DE Bradley Chubb and Penn State RB Saquon Barkley.
Chubb and Barkely seem highly unlikely to get past the first five picks. Fitzpatrick seems like a Top 10 guy, along with the four quarterbacks. Do the math, and that means the Redskins could have a decent chance at Vea or Nelson. Remember, high potential players like Tremaine Edmunds and Denzel Ward are likely to be Top 10 picks, too.
This time last year, it seemed impossible for Jonathan Allen to slip to the Redskins at 17. Then it happened.
Could a similar scene unfold in 2018? This week in Indy will have a big impact.