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How the rise of Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes could result in big payoff for Redskins at NFL Draft

How the rise of Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes could result in big payoff for Redskins at NFL Draft

Almost every year it happens: A quarterback emerges after the combine, after the workouts, and begins to build serious momentum in the week leading up to the draft. This year is no different, and the player driving up draft boards is Texas Tech's Patrick Mahomes. 

Last season as a junior for the Red Raiders, Mahomes threw for more than 5,000 yards to go with 41 touchdowns against only 10 interceptions. He completed more than 65 percent of his passes, and added another 285 rush yards and another 12 TDs on the ground. 

In a draft with more questions than answers at quarterback, Mahomes is generating a lot of buzz.

Word is Bill O'Brien of the Texans 'absolutely loves' Mahomes, and the passer is high on the radar of other teams as well. 

What does this mean for the Redskins? Could be very good news.

To start with, the Cardinals draft in front of the 'Skins. Should Arizona make a move for Mahomes at 13, that means one more good player will slide down the board, giving Washington more options at pick 17. 

If Arizona determines 13 too high for Mahomes, a few things could happen by the time the 'Skins get on the clock. Knowing multiple teams are interested in the rookie passer, perhaps a trade market emerges for the 17th pick. It doesn't seem that there is any one player Washington brass is locked in on at 17, and trading down could make sense. 

The 2017 Draft is quite deep in good spots for the Redskins: edge rusher, linebackers, safeties and running backs. Many draft evaluators have suggested trading back makes sense for the 'Skins, and increased attention in Mahomes could accelerate that possibility. 

The Chiefs draft 27th, the Texans 25th. Between them and the 'Skins, the only team that might consider a first-round QB could be the Giants, trying to find Eli Manning's successor. With that much interest, and maybe more lurking, trade talks could blossom.

Even without a trade, Redskins fans should root for a run on QBs early in the draft. The more passers that get taken in front of Washington, the better the chances get of a player previously thought a Top 10 lock to slip all the way to 17. That could include guys like Reuben Foster, Derrick Barnett, Takkarist McKinley or a host of other top talents. 

 

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Doug Williams has a 'great relationship' with Dwayne Haskins, he's a fan

Doug Williams has a 'great relationship' with Dwayne Haskins, he's a fan

While some may be hesitant to crown Dwayne Haskins the future of the Redskins organization, Doug Williams has made his stance on the former 2019 first-round draft pick clear: He's a fan.

“I’m a fan of him. We have a good relationship," Williams told Sirius XM NFL Radio on Tuesday. "Like I tell him all the time, I don’t coach him, but I can coach him on a lot of other things other than on the football field and how to handle certain things. Him and I have a good relationship. "

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As the Washington Redskins SVP of Player Development, Williams has a significant role in the front office. Haskins is one of the biggest prospects taken while he's been an executive of the team.

"I hear all the media pundits and stuff talk about what we should do regarding Haskins," Williams said. "But from what I’ve seen this young man do last year, I can’t see too many people as or more talented than him.”

In Haskins' nine appearances last season, he threw for 7 touchdowns, 7 interceptions, and 1,365 yards. 

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Kyle Allen can handle anything, and that includes being the backup

Kyle Allen can handle anything, and that includes being the backup

Since Ron Rivera took over as the Redskins head coach in early January, he has insisted on finding competition for rising second-year passer Dwayne Haskins. Rivera found that competition when the Redskins acquired Kyle Allen from the Carolina Panthers a few weeks ago, and the two are expected to compete for the starting job come training camp.

Rivera spoke to the local media on Tuesday for the first time since the trade and explained he envisions "a good competition" between the two. But as Rivera went on to rave about Allen's character, it's clear the Redskins new head coach brought in Allen for multiple other reasons besides just competing with the Redskins first-round pick from a year ago.

Allen -- an undrafted free agent in 2018 who started 12 games a season ago -- has played every role a quarterback can possibly have at some point during his first two seasons in the league. His mindset, and the ability to handle different roles and responsibilities, is something that stood out to the new Redskins head coach.

"What he's really concerned about is doing the best job he can," Rivera said. "If he ends up starting and being the guy, great. He'll be fired up about it. And if he's not, if he's in a backup role, he'll be fired up about that as well."

Although there will be some sort of QB competition, the Redskins don't necessarily expect Allen to win the job. Rivera even said as much during a radio interview last week, as the team plans to enter training camp with Haskins as QB1. Others, such as former Redskins tight end Chris Cooley, simply think Haskins is the better player.

But should Allen have to step in as the team's starter for one reason or another, Rivera has full confidence in the 24-year-old. Allen is familiar with new offensive coordinator Scott Turner's system, one he called difficult to grasp but a system that has plenty of potential once learned. 

When in Carolina, Allen spent two seasons in the same room as Cam Newton, someone Rivera referred to is having a "strong personality." Rivera was impressed with how Allen handled himself there, especially with there being constant change at the position due to multiple injuries to Newton and former Panthers QB Taylor Heinicke. 

"Having been around Kyle for two seasons, I've kind of watched him interact with the quarterbacks that were in the room," Rivera said. "He was in the room with a very strong personality in Cam Newton, and Kyle handled himself tremendously. I just know what kind of person he is and feel like he's the kind of guy going into this, he's not threatened by anything."

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Outside of Haskins and Allen, the Redskins still have Alex Smith under contract as the veteran QB continues to recover from his gruesome leg injury. While Rivera has said not to rule out Smith in the past, the move to acquire Allen was something the head coach called "insurance," as Smith is still rehabbing and a ways away from returning to the field.

When taking the Redskins head coaching job, Rivera knew he would be tasked with turning around the culture in Redskins Park, a culture that has not seen playoff success in over a decade. Turning around a culture means finding people that will buy into the team mindset and the overarching goal within the organization, and that's something Rivera thinks Allen will do tremendously.

"He's the right kind of person for that room, and that's what I felt very strongly about," Allen said. "That's why we were able to make the deal with Carolina and bring him in. I just think he's got that real good sense about him, you know, being part of something is better than being an individual."

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