Quick Links

Need to Know: 5 NFL draft notes including the Redskins' pick at 34

cyrus-kouandjio-alabama.png

Need to Know: 5 NFL draft notes including the Redskins' pick at 34

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, April 16, 22 days before the NFL draft.

Nickel coverage

Here are five thoughts on the Redskins and the NFL draft, which eventually will get here, I’m told.

It’s not a grocery list, people. You don’t grab your cart and head to aisle five to pick up a tackle first then zip over the produce to find a fresh cornerback after that and so on. You really don’t know what your board is going to look like when you’re on the clock. Even if you think you desperately need a starting right tackle it does you no good to just take a tackle if there isn’t one on your board who is capable of starting. Or if there is another player who is much better at his position than the tackle you’re staring it. You have to take the better player.

—With all of that said, I still wouldn’t be surprised if the factors of need and best available player magically melded together in the form of Alabama offensive tackle Cyrus Kouankjio. I’m putting my (figurative) money on him to be the Redskins’ pick at 34.

—Since they are picking near the top of each round the Redskins should get someone who is capable of starting in 2014 with their top pick and someone who can start by 2015 with their third-round pick. The four players they pick on Saturday will be depth, special teams, and maybe, if they’re lucky, a 2015 or 2016 starter.

—The Redskins might like to trade down in the second round to pick up some additional selections. But it’s not like going up the window at a bank to get a ten and two fives for a $20 bill. You can’t call Roger Goodell and say, hey, I’d like two thirds and a fourth for this second rounder. There has to be a team that is willing to trade up. And in a draft that’s deep like this one is, teams may be reluctant to give up picks to move up. Don’t be surprised if the Redskins try to move down but fall.

—We will be getting our first look at how Bruce Allen drafts when he has the final say over personnel. In his first job as a GM in Oakland, Al Davis always had the final word. And in Tampa Bay, Jon Gruden already had a Super Bowl ring so he had plenty of influence in the process. Here Allen has the control and while he will take input from Jay Gruden, Scott Campbell, and others it’s his call. It takes a while to build up a history to see what Allen looks for so this is just a first step.

Like Real Redskins on Facebook!

Timeline

—It’s been 108 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 144 days until they play another one.

Days until: First veteran minicamp 13; NFL Draft 22; Training camp starts 98

In case you missed it

Quick Links

Redskins Draft Room Revealed: Who works the phones, and who makes the call

Redskins Draft Room Revealed: Who works the phones, and who makes the call

Since the dismissal of former general manager Scot McCloughan, there's been little question who was in charge at Redskins Park. Unofficially anyway. 

Bruce Allen is back running the show, if he ever stopped, and will be at the center of the Redskins draft room and decision making process.

For weeks, Allen and Jay Gruden made clear that the entire Redskins front office - from scouts to the top brass - have input on draft grades. Those grades will determine what players the 'Skins take, and the team is unlikely to deviate from their draft board. 

On Monday, however, Washington director of college scouting Scott Campbell addressed the media and explained that when a decision needs to be made, it will be Allen's call. 

From Campbell:

The way we have the room when the draft is ongoing is we have Eric Schaffer and Alex Santos are constantly calling teams above us. They’re taking the phone calls from the other teams – also behind [us]. A lot of times per Bruce’s instructions, he’ll say, ‘Hey, you take these five teams. You take the next five teams. Start making calls.’ And then we’re receiving calls too at the same time. Once they get that information, they’ll tell the table in the front and say, ‘Hey, we can trade back for this, we can trade up for that.’ It would be me and Bruce and Jay saying ‘No, no, we’ve got enough guys there’ or say ‘I like these guys,’ or like, “Hey, there’s guys there.’ So it’s kind of a discussion amongst the people, and most times it’s Bruce saying, ‘Just tell them we’re not interested,’ or he says, ‘Get the league on the phone. We’re going to make that trade.’”

Campbell's comments reveal quite a lot. To start, it's interesting to know the roles of Schaffer and Santos during the draft. Both men carry a lot of impact in the team's personnel selection. Also, and it was fairly obvious since McCloughan's firing, but Jay Gruden's role continues to increase.

The biggest tell, however, is that ultimately Bruce Allen makes the decisions. It's not a surprise, but it is important to know. Officially.

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

Quick Links

Redskins won't say if Joe Mixon is on their board but say character does count

Redskins won't say if Joe Mixon is on their board but say character does count

The Redskins may or may not have one of the most polarizing members of the 2017 draft class on their draft board. But they do believe that character counts.

Scott Campbell, the Redskins’ director of college scouting, would not say if  Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon, who is seen on video striking a woman and knocking her to the floor in an incident that occurred in July of 2014, is on the team’s board.

“We don't announce who's on and off the board for strategic reasons,” said Campbell on Monday at the team’s pre-draft news conference, saying that it’s the team’s policy.

He added that incidents like the one that Mixon was a part of do come into consideration.

RELATED: NFL Mock Draft Version 10.0

“Character is very important to me, it's very important to the Redskins,” said Campbell.

He explained that early in the scouting process, character issues are not taken into account.

“What I always told the scouts and how I was trained 30 years ago when I started is when you start to evaluate guys in the beginning, you don't factor in the character, you don't grade character, you grade talent,” said Campbell, who has been with the Redskins organization for 16 years. “You don't throw away somebody early who may have some redeeming quality or a part of the story you didn't know about.”

It’s later on that the scouts gather information on such incidents as problems with the law, failed drug tests, and other quarters of character.

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins mock 2.0 goes offense early, defense often 

“Our scouts do a great job getting a lot of information,” said Campbell. “Some of the incidents you brought up happened after the season, at the combine, and just a few days ago. All those things are factored into an evaluation as they are gathered.”

With that information at hand, they start the process of elimination, deciding who fits and who doesn’t.

“When it comes close to the draft, you start weeding out all that, getting more information, deciding, OK, that guy's not our kind of guy, that guy's not a Redskin, this guy could be drafted but good luck to them,” said Campbell.

It seems like much more of a gut feel type of process than anything rigid. There is not much of a clue there as to whether or not the team will consider bringing Mixon aboard, who is inarguably one of the most talented running backs in the draft. The upside is that Mixon could provide a jolt to the team’s offense. The downside would be an immediate public relations hit. The team also must consider what will happen if Mixon were to run afoul of the NFL’s domestic abuse policy in the future, which calls for a six-game suspension for a first offense with penalties getting progressively worse if problems persist.

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.