The first round of the NFL draft was a weird one this year. Only one quarterback, three wide receivers and a tight end were taken as far as offensive skill players go, not to mention the fact that for the first time in the history of the draft no running-backs were drafted in the first round.
At any rate, if I could pick out a year for us to not have a number one pick, this year would have been the year for that. Many players at positions of need with high value are still available for the Redskins to draft with their 51st pick.
The names of available players on day 2 that fit the Redskins needs are:
- Jonathan Cyprien – 6’0, 210 pounds (Safety) Florida International – Highly surprised Dallas passed up on Cyprien with the 31 pick (they traded back with the Niners), but almost positive they will take him if he is still available when they pick at 47.
- D.J. Swearinger – 6’0, 212 pounds (Safety) South Carolina – This kid has been on top of my want list for awhile. Captain of a really good South Carolina defense and a four year starter who has a high-motor, is a downhill run and pass defender who throws his body around, but with some control. Big hitter over the middle on receivers and pounding running backs, especially in tight quarters and as a backside pursuit defender. Good lateral movement to flow with runs from the back half, yet fly into the hole to prevent big runs.
- Johnthan Banks – 6’2, 185 pounds (Cornerback) Mississippi State – Height, length and competitive nature could make him a starter. Good hands for the interception, can high-point passes and make difficult catches with superb concentration. Effective on jump balls in end zone and knocks away passes from behind without interfering.
- Jamar Taylor – 5’10, 192 pounds (Cornerback ) Boise State – Taylor is a physical and athletic cornerback looking to be the sixth Boise State defensive back to be drafted by NFL teams over the last eight years. He missed most of the second half of 2011 with a stress fracture in his leg, but returned with a vengeance during his senior year by excelling in man coverage on downfield routes.
- Terrance Williams – 6’2, 208 pounds (Wide Receiver) Baylor – Robert Griffin III’s former teammate and the man who lead the NCAA in receiving yards last season. This kid has a skill set that is highly under-rated, I don’t think the Redskins will be able to get him since he slipped into the second, but if they are planning on drafting the best available this guy could be it.
- Justin Hunter – 6’4, 196 pounds (Wide receiver) Tennessee – Prototypical height for an outside NFL receiver, though he will line up in the slot to test defenses over the middle. Straight-line speed appears more than sufficient for his size, can burst past corners down the sideline, and long strides that make it difficult for cornerbacks to recover once beaten. I would be highly surprised if Hunter is still available at 51, but if he is he could fit the “best available” role for Washington.
- Darius Slay – 6’0, 192 pounds (Cornerback) Mississippi State – Slay has a good build for the position and long arms. Gets good use out his length and will use his hands to disturb receivers during the route. Very good at attacking the hands and arms as the receiver goes for the reception, forces a lot of drops.
- Bacarri Rambo – 6’0, 218 pounds (Safety) Georgia – His name alone catches your attention. Possesses the size, athletic skill set, and playmaking ability to become a starter at the next level. Rambo has had some off the field issues that have caused his draft stock to fall a bit, he will more than likely still be around in the 3rd round.
- Phillip Thomas – 6’1, 215 pounds (Safety) Fresno State – Thomas has been in a defensive system that is a lot like the one in Washington for the last few years while at Fresno. A gruesome left leg injury forced him to question his potential NFL future, but the senior was everywhere in 2012 and looked as good as new. He gets a bit tentative when closing on ball carriers, choosing not to meet them at the line of scrimmage unless lined up in the box.
- T.J. McDonald – 6’3, 205 pounds (Safety) Southern California – The son of NFL Pro Bowl safety Tim McDonald and brother of UCLA safety Tevin earned All-American recognition for his big hits and hands in coverage (six interceptions in 2010-2011).