Even with their red zone issues, the Redskins had one of the NFL's top offenses in 2016, finishing third in the league in yards per game. Consider that, plus the fact that Washington's defense didn't put up much resistance against their opponents, and the widespread opinion is that the team should nab a defender with their first-round pick at No. 17 in the draft.
That doesn't mean the decision-makers are just ignoring offensive players, though, and two such players — Dalvin Cook and Christian McCaffrey — told reporters at the NFL Combine that they've both met with Washington this week in Indianapolis.
Cook and McCaffrey are two of the most appealing running backs in this year's class, and will appear in the top three of most analyst's rankings along with Leonard Fournette.
One of those analysts, ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr., actually has the Redskins taking Cook in his latest mock draft, so at least in his mind, Washington meeting with the Florida State product isn't just a cursory event. With that being said, the 'Skins will be vetting tons of prospects at the Combine, so these interviews certainly don't mean that fans in the DMV should start making room in their closet for a Cook or McCaffrey jersey.
If either player is indeed available when the Redskins are up to make their selection in April, the classic "best player available vs. drafting a position of need" argument would occur again. The team's backfield isn't set by any means even with contributors like Robert Kelley and Matt Jones on the roster, but on the list of priorities, running back lags far behind areas like defensive line, linebacker and safety.
Could the Redskins afford what would be somewhat of a luxury pick when there are other holes that need to be filled? That's something the front office will need to weigh. And by meeting with Cook and McCaffrey, it appears that they are in fact evaluating it, at least to some extent.
GALLERY: CSN'S FULL MOCK DRAFT, VERSION 4.0