INDIANAPOLIS—If you polled Redskins fans about what they want their team to do with the fifth overall pick in the draft, the “trade back” option would at least win a plurality, if not a solid majority.
There has been plenty of unconfirmed talk here at the NFL Combine that the Redskins would indeed listen to offers to drop back and pick up some more selections to get to work on filling the myriad of team needs that currently exist.
So, let’s take a look at a few scenarios here. The one generating the biggest buzz while being the least likely is the Eagles trading up to get quarterback Marcus Mariota. Chip Kelly, formerly Mariota’s coach at Oregon, believes that Mariota would be the perfect QB for his system. The buzz is that he is willing to make major deal to try to get him.
One possibility being floated around is the Eagles moving up from their spot at 20th overall to the Redskins five hole spot in exchange for their first- and second-round picks in both 2015 and 2016.
I think that if it was any other team besides the Eagles the Redskins could be very interested in this deal. But the fact that they could be setting up their division rival with the quarterback they need to be competitive for the next 15 years would make Scot McCloughan think twice, even three times, about making a deal with Kelly. In fact, the Redskins might be inclined to take a lesser deal just to make sure that the Eagles don’t get Mariota.
A small deal they could make would be with the Jets, who pick right behind them at No. 6. New York may be in the market for Mariota and perhaps the Redskins could get a third to flip with the Jets. That would give the Jets insurance that the Redskins won’t make another deal and the Redskins could still get the player they wanted at No. 5.
There are options in between the huge deal and the little deal. There is talk that the Browns, who have the 12th and 19th picks, are very interested in Mariota. According to the draft trade points value chart, the Browns would be overpaying if they gave up both of their first-round picks for the fifth overall. The value chart is just a guideline so that doesn’t mean it won’t happen but perhaps that No. 12 and the Browns’ second-rounder is a more realistic price.
Those teams seem to be the primary candidates for Mariota’s services at the moment. But as the draft gets closer, other QB-needy teams might decide to jump in. But it seems unlikely that any deal will be made before the Redskins are on the clock. Their trading partner would need to make sure that Mariota is still there before pulling the trigger on a deal.
All the Redskins and potential trading partners can do is talk about possibilities and scenarios. If Mariota is still on the board when the Redskins’ pick comes up, the bidding could begin in earnest.