Kiper revisits Redskins class of '13

January, 24, 2014
Jan 24
2:00
PM ET
The Washington Redskins draft didn't look any better or worse after the season than it did before. Not in Mel Kiper's eyes. The ESPN NFL draft analyst considered the Redskins draft just slightly above average last spring and nothing has changed.

The Redskins managed to draft one player who served as their No. 3 cornerback all season in second-round pick David Amerson. He was inconsistent, flashing some ability that portends well for the future, but also some concerns. Third-round pick Jordan Reed could be the jewel of this class -- if he can stay healthy. Beyond that? A lot of question marks. Sixth-round pick Bacarri Rambo played mostly because of what they didn't have more than what he could do. He finished poorly and it's tough to project him as anything other than a future backup (who does not excel on special teams). Fifth rounder Chris Thompson (durability) and Brandon Jenkins (inexperience) are an interesting pair. Thompson showed nothing during the regular season and then was hurt; Jenkins needs time to mature as a 3-4 outside linebacker. Seventh-rounder Jawan Jamison did not show up in the best of shape, never a good sign. Fourth rounder Phillip Thomas got hurt before the season.

Anyway, Kiper gave them a C+ before the draft and a C+ in hindsight. Here's what he wrote about this class in his Insiders piece: Insider

"At the time, I called it an OK draft because of the depth added at need spots despite the fact that Washington didn't pick until No. 51 thanks to the Robert Griffin III trade. That point on depth still holds, although the Redskins had to play rookies in the secondary far more than they probably would have liked, and sloppy coverage and tackling in the secondary was a problem all year. Amerson and Rambo saw a lot of time, but again, probably way too much -- those guys just aren't getting as many reps on a better defense. The steal here was Reed, whom they got at No. 85. He was on track to challenge Keenan Allen as the top pass-catcher among rookies before an injury sidelined him for the season. If Reed comes back strong, the grade goes up, but this draft also is measured by RG III's progress into next season. Here's hoping Jay Gruden can bring the best out of him."

Kiper is right in part when he says the 2013 class is measured in part by Griffin's progress. Just like the 2012 and '14 classes considering they surrendered picks in each draft for Griffin. But they can still put together a good class even without a first-round pick.

John Keim

ESPN Washington Redskins reporter

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