The fact that Scot McCloughan would like to trade down from their perch at the No. 5 pick is not a state secret. But he made it clear that he won’t take just any deal. For one thing, he doesn’t want to go back very far.
“I have about 12-15 football players I feel are really good football players, who will come in year one and be able to produce and produce for a long time,” the Redskins general manager told Larry Michael on Redskins Nation. “So you can’t get too cute with yourself and move too far back because you take yourself out of that picture for those players. So now you’re losing out on maybe a superstar to get maybe three good players, which is OK. But the superstar is someone that’s really special and it’s hard to trade out.”
The total of 12 to 15 players with top talent jibes with what a number of other general managers have said when asked how many first-round caliber players were on their boards. McCloughan, however, may not be looking for the same players as the other decision makers around the league. In his press conference on Monday, he talked about identifying players who have the “it” factor.
“I’ll give a little on the talent standpoint if I know this guy’s intelligent, he’s very passionate, he’s very competitive and he understands about the team, not about the individual,” he told Michael. “A guy who’s bigger, faster, stronger? I’ll pass on him and take the guy I know is consistent every day, to come in here and you know exactly what you have.”
McCloughan added that the fact that a player may have made a mistake somewhere along the line does not disqualify him from consideration. But the prospect had better learn from his mistake.
“It’s the repeat offenders, [they] are the ones that make you scratch your head,” he said. “The ones that show up at the combine and might test positive or the ones that have been arrested three times for a suspended license, stuff like that. So by the time you get to that you can usually tell there’s something missing there just by sitting down at the combine or a the all-star games and talking to the kids, how they come across.”
Reality makes it necessary to cut the draft prospects a little big of slack. “You can’t just pigeon hole everybody as a bad guy if they have a positive marijuana test one time in college as a freshman or sophomore . . . You’d have a tough time drafting guys if you threw them all away,” he said.