Here is what you need to know on this Friday, April 6, 20 days before the NFL draft.
Setting the odds on the No. 1 pick
We’re a little less than three weeks away from the first round of the draft.
The Redskins’ draft board is nearly set so let’s break out the $100 in imaginary casino chips and see who is the favorite to be the first player off the board for the Redskins.
We are going to assume here that the Redskins do not trade up or down and they stay with pick No. 13.
DL Da’Ron Payne, $35 — It’s too early to have a strong favorite here. I’m going with Payne because I think that the Redskins want a lineman who can play nose tackle and still have impact in nickel situations. And they can fill their need without reaching; the No. 13 spot is just about right for the 6-2, 311-pound Payne.
DL Vita Vea, $25 — Maybe my belief that the Redskins will take a D-lineman in the first round for the second straight year after going 20 years without taking one is too strong. But Vea certainly would be a solid value at No. 13. Nobody doubts his ability to clog up the middle. The questions about him surround his ability to be effective on the field on second and third downs. He was effective rushing the passer at University of Washington, but will that translate to the NFL?
LB Roquan Smith $15 — After thinking for a long time that he’s a guaranteed top-10 pick, I’m starting to get the feeling that he will be there at No. 13. Some teams will talk themselves out of taking him due to his size. Would the Redskins take him even though they just re-signed Zach Brown and Mason Foster? It is possible, but I have my doubts.
S Derwin James, $10 — Although he clearly is a top-10 talent, safeties aren't valued as high as some other positions. That could cause a slide to No. 13. The Redskins are set at safety with D.J. Swearinger and Montae Nicholson, although the latter’s injury issues combined with the Florida State product’s special talent could make them opt for James if he falls back that far.
CB Minkah Fitzpatrick, $10 — I’m not so sure that I’d take him this high but I’ve seen Tyrann Mathieu comparisons and that makes him very intriguing. The Redskins would have to think very hard about taking him if he’s there.
RB Derrius Guice, $5 — Due to the Redskins’ needs and the way the draft shapes up, the only offensive player on the board here is a long shot. He’s a good running back and I think he’d be a good fit but in a draft that is deep in running backs, I don’t see where it makes sense that early to take one who is only marginally better than others. But given the attention the Redskins have given to him, including a pre-pro day dinner with a contingent that included Bruce Allen, you can't completely rule him out.
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—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 10
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 112
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 156
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