Redskins

Redskins

The Redskins enter week 17 of the NFL regular season with a spot in the playoffs on the line.

A win against the New York Giants will moves the Redskins to 9-6-1 and reward them with a berth in the 2016 NFL Playoffs. 

The Redskins have been a tough team to beat at times this season, but have lacked a tight consistency on defense needed to cement themselves as one of the NFL's truly elite teams. 

One of the areas the Redskins need to improve the most is defending the run.

Through 15 games, Washington ranks 25th in the league in rushing yards per game allowed (117 ypg), and they've allowed the fourth most rushing touchdowns (18). 

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In Ben Standig's first mock draft, he has the Redskins addressing this weakness by selecting Michigan State defensive tackle Malik McDowell with the 21st overall pick.

McDowell, who stands at 6-6 and weighs 276 pounds, was named first-team All-Big Ten by the Associated Press and a second-team All-American by CBS Sports. 

In his junior season he led the defensive line with 36 tackles, despite playing in just nine games. 

Ziggy Hood and Matt Ioannidis currently line up on the interior of the defensive line and while they are fine players, McDowell would be an added boost. With defensive end Chris Baker becoming an unrestricted free agent in 2017 and Ricky Jean Francois hitting free agency in 2018, the Redskins need to begin addressing the future of the defensive line.

 

CBS Sports has McDowell ranked as the 18th best player in the country on their NFL Draft big board. 

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