Thursday, April 22, 2010
Skins draft-day nuggets: Bradford in play?
By Dan Graziano
By his presence alone, Mike Shanahan made the Washington Redskins relevant again in the league. Then he followed it up with the most fascinating trade of the past two decades -- in my opinion. Because of the Donovan McNabb trade, a lot of us are wondering whether Shanahan and Bruce Allen have another trick up their sleeves with the No. 4 overall pick.
The mock draft coalition has swung its support toward Oklahoma left tackle Trent Williams with that pick. There's a belief that his ability to play other positions on the line makes him even more valuable. But the King of the Mock (sorry, Mel), Rick "Goose" Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News, is sticking with Oklahoma State's Russell Okung at No. 4. You have to admire Shanahan and Allen's secrecy. Other than sending out quarterback smokescreens ("we LOVE Jimmy Clausen"), the two have played it close to the vest.
There are even rumors the Redskins could bypass a left tackle and take safety Eric Berry, who may be the safest choice in the entire draft based on his remarkable college career and skillset. Mike Wise of the Post is a little bummed that he thinks the Redskins will do the right thing tonight. He misses being able to criticize Vinny Cerrato before the pick is even made.
Rick Maese of the Post has a nice breakdown of all the Skins' options. There's a chance one of the top defensive tackles in the draft -- Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy -- could be available at No. 4. Oh, and don't forget that Shanahan and Allen could try to bail out on the pick and try to land some picks on Day 2.
Dan Graziano of AOL Fanhouse is reporting that Washington is still having "discussions" with the Rams about moving up to select quarterback Sam Bradford. But while I do believe that Shanahan thinks Bradford is a remarkable talent, I don't see him creating an awkward situation with McNabb. It would certainly be the splashiest move of the draft, but it doesn't make a lot of sense.
The Skins' beat writer for the Post, Jason Reid, also thinks Bradford is still in play. I think the Skins want us to believe that just about everyone is "in play." I'd expect the Redskins to be on the clock at about 8:15 p.m. ET. This should be very interesting. Part of me wants to hop a plane to Redskins Park this very minute.