The Redskins drafted eight players last week and they will get to work during this weekend’s rookie minicamp. History tells us that some of them will boom and some will bust. Who will be the best find in this rookie class? Redskins Insiders Rich Tandler and Tarik El-Bashir pick their favorites.
Tandler: I think that Trent Murphy will develop into a solid pass rusher and Morgan Moses could be a starter for years to come. But I like the chances of Spencer Long to become the first interior lineman the Redskins have drafted and developed into a solid starter since they took Derrick Dockery in the third round in 2003. Both his size and his attitude make him my favorite to become the star of the draft class. At 6-5, 320 he fits the prototype that Jay Gruden is looking for physically. But more importantly Long fits the new Redskins mold mentally. One scouting report described him as an “ornery” blocker and his physical style will be a welcome change from the zone-blocking finesse we’ve seen along the line for the last four years. Long does his best work in close quarters and Robert Griffin III will welcome his ability to stonewall pass rushers coming up the middle. He might not be a starter right out of the box. But at some point this season or by 2015 at the latest he will push aside either center Kory Lichtensteiger or guard Chris Chester and become a solid and nasty asset for years to come.
El-Bashir: Good choice, Rich. I agree that Long has the look of a player who could be a steady, long term contributor. But, as I’ve explained here a number of times, I’m a sucker for speed and skill. Just like Jay Gruden is. That’s why I’m going with Lache Seastrunk. When Gruden met with reporters after the draft, he was asked if there was one player he was especially excited about. He had eight choices. He picked Seastrunk. Why? “Lache has what you can’t coach, and that’s blazing speed,” Gruden said. Which could make the Redskins’ sixth round pick a perfect complement to rugged runner Alfred Morris. The biggest concern about Seastrunk is his inexperience catching the football. Indeed he only caught nine passes in 2012 and none last season. The Redskins, however, believe he possesses the tools to become a effective pass catcher out of the backfield and the ability to develop into a solid effective pass blocker. If he does that—and proves he can be the home run threat in the NFL that he was in college—he could be Roy Helu’s eventual replacement. And the type of electrifying talent that will bring fans out of their seats.