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Could another stunning hire be on tap for the Redskins?

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Could another stunning hire be on tap for the Redskins?

Ten years ago today, the Redskins’ search for a new head coach revolved around guys like Ray Rhodes and some other retreads who had been fired as head coaches at least once. At least that was what we knew during the search for Steve Spurrier’s replacement.

But on the evening of January 7, 2004 word began to leak out that the legendary Joe Gibbs had agreed to return to coach the Redskins. The move sent Redskins Nation sky high, in part because it so totally unexpected.

There are currently 11 names on the known Redskins’ coaching search list and a few more usual suspects who could be added to the mix. By now we all know who those coaches are, a collection of NFL coordinators with a college coach or two sprinkled in there.

But in meetings with reporters last week Bruce Allen made it clear that the list of potential Redskins head coaches that he is working from is longer than the one that we know of.

If there are several unknown candidates under serious consideration we have the potential for a shocker like we saw 10 years ago.

Of course, it couldn’t be exactly the same as the return of Gibbs. There isn’t going to be a Gibbs 3.0. There is no other former Redskins coach out there who would take the job, much less elicit a positive fan reaction.

How about a former coach from another team? At this point, with all of his denials, Bill Cowher would be a stunning hire. Ditto for Jon Gruden.

Or maybe a shocker could come out of the college ranks. Bob Stoops of Oklahoma has been tied to the Browns job although the team has refuted the story. Could he get a call from the Redskins? Could David Shaw of Stanford, Kevin Sumlin of Texas A&M or Art Briles of Baylor recant their recent pledges to stay in place and make the jump to the Redskins?

The thing is, we could go on for a few thousand words here and throw names out and still not hit on who the stunning surprise hire might end up being. That’s the definition of a stunner, something that absolutely nobody on the outside sees coming.

And, by definition, it’s unlikely that we will have a shocking ending to the Redskins coaching search. Take your pick of the usual suspects and you’ll probably be right.

Probably. But be prepared, anything is possible.

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The Redskins now have three of the top 12 players from the 2013 Rivals recruiting class

The Redskins now have three of the top 12 players from the 2013 Rivals recruiting class

If you're trying to predict who the Redskins are going to take next in the 2017 NFL Draft, you may want to put some money down on Alvin Kamara.

That's because Washington is apparently trying to assemble as much talent as possible from the 2013 Rivals Top 100 recruiting class. After taking Jonathan Allen in Round 1 of the event, the Redskins are now home to three of the top 12 players from that list:

Allen joins Su'a Cravens and Kendall Fuller on a defense that is starting to collect some serious young players. And while many members of the 2013 Top 100 class have already been drafted this year or in previous years, Kamara, a running back out of Tennessee who was No. 45, is still available. Could he be the next 2013 prospect to land with the Burgundy and Gold?

MORE REDSKINS: DID PLAYING AT ALABAMA HURT ALLEN'S DRAFT STOCK?

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How playing at Alabama may have actually hurt Jonathan Allen's draft stock

How playing at Alabama may have actually hurt Jonathan Allen's draft stock

For the past few seasons, Jonathan Allen was a stud at the heart of Alabama's defense. He was far from the only stud, however, and that might be another factor in why he slipped to the Redskins at pick No. 17 on Thursday night.

The chief concern about Allen is the health of his shoulders, but there's also the question of how he'll do when he's no longer with Nick Saban's star-laden unit. It's easy to succeed when you're a part of a loaded ensemble cast, the thinking might've gone when it came to Allen, but how will you do on your solo project?

In addition to Allen, the Crimson Tide featured Marlon Humphrey (who went 16th to the Ravens), Reuben Foster (who went 31st to the 49ers) and others, like Tim Williams, Dalvin Tomlinson and Ryan Anderson, all of whom could go in Friday's second and third rounds. Together, that's a tremendous defense, but in the NFL, they'll be striking out on their own.

MORE REDSKINS: NORMAN, COUSINS, OTHERS WELCOME ALLEN TO D.C.

That's another possible explanation for why the Redskins were able to nab what was almost a consensus top-five prospect so late in the event.

"He's a really talented pass rusher but he's always been surrounded by enough talent that it's been hard for offenses to game plan their protection for him," one NFC director of player personnel told NFL.com.

Now, it's not like Allen is joining a bunch of nobodies in Washington. Ryan Kerrigan, Preston Smith and Zach Brown will also be lining up with him in Greg Manusky's front-seven. Oh, and Allen is no slouch either — the list of his strengths in this particular scouting report contains words like "superior," "proficient," "consistent" and "excellent."

But it is probably fair to say that, comparatively speaking, the rookie won't be amongst as many skilled guys as he was in college. By rushing to the podium to snag him, however, the Redskins clearly expect him to handle the NFL transition just fine.

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