Who will win Cowboys vs. Redskins? #DALvsWAS— Rich Tandler (@Rich_TandlerCSN) September 18, 2016
The 2017 NFL Draft isn't officially here, but it's very near. And for the Washington Redskins, this year's NFL Draft brings with it a lot of intrigue.
The Redskins are coming off an 8-7-1 season and are in the middle of an offseason that's included a lot of change. Therefore, the team needs to ace their 2017 NFL Draft and bring in a rookie class with a lot of talent.
How will they do that, though? Starting with pick No. 17, will the Redskins draft a player based on need or based on their board? And which prospects would be the best fits for Washington?
Scroll through CSNmidatlantic.com's 2017 Redskins draft preview for the most in-depth coverage of the team's draft you'll find before the big night.
What will the Redskins' draft strategy be for the 2017 Draft?
For the Redskins to get an "A" on their draft class, CSN Redskins Insider JP Finlay says the team must find impact players that'll help their front seven. See which players he says fit that criteria here, including one highly-touted linebacker who seems to be slipping.
- The NFL Draft debate that never ends revolves around whether teams should take players who are the best available or players who fit a need. One ex-GM, however, has a different way to go about the draft, which can be found here.
- With Scot McCloughan no longer in the fold, many are wondering how the Redskins will make decisions when they're on the clock. Charley Casserly outlines how they could go about that process here.
- The Redskins have 10 selections in this year's draft. JP Finlay has the details on how it would work if they wanted to make trades and move up or down when the event begins.
What are the Redskins' biggest draft needs?
- Some may say running back would be a luxury pick for Washington, but if they decide to take one in Round 1, Christian McCaffrey and Dalvin Cook seem to be the most likely options. Redskins reporter Rich Tandler explains why the worry over McCaffrey's ability to be a workhorse back is not necessary, former NFL GM Charley Casserly has a rapid fire scouting report on Cook and JP Finlay identified a key difference that could separate the two on the Redskins' board.
- Defensive line is a huge area of need for the Redskins. You can watch scouting reports on players like Jonathan Allen, Caleb Brantley, Malik McDowell, Taco Charlton, Larry Ogunjobi and Derek Barnett by simply clicking on their names, all of whom would qualify as nice additions to the team's line. JP Finlay, however, has an argument as to why the Redskins would be better suited looking elsewhere in Round 1.
- There are also plenty of linebackers that would look terrific in Burgundy and Gold, including Haason Reddick, Reuben Foster and Takk McKinley. Casserly, for one, has the Redskins picking McKinley at No. 17, and he says the UCLA pass rusher is better than Ryan Kerrigan was coming out of college.
- Feeling a safety? Malik Hooker and Budda Baker both figure to be in the mix when the Redskins first pick on Thursday night.
- It may seem far-fetched with Kirk Cousins in town, but drafting a quarterback is not out of the question. Trevor Matich thinks this prospect would be an appropriate mid-round selection if they go that route.
What are mock drafts projecting the Redskins to do at No. 17?
- CSNmidatlantic.com's mock draft expert Ben Standig has the Redskins landing Reuben Foster.
- Doug Farrar of Bleacher Report projects the Redskins to draft Malik McDowell.
- NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah thinks the Redskins will "steal" Jonathan Allen, which would make a lot of folks happy.
- Charley Casserly envisions the Redskins ending up with Tak McKinley.
- Danny Kelly of the Ringer predicts that the Redskins will select Budda Baker.
Other Redskins draft storylines that Redskins fans should know
- The Redskins salary cap looks tight as things stand now, but Rich Tandler breaks down not only how the Redskins will be able to sign all of their draft picks, but also possibly ink a player like Morgan Moses to a long-term extension, too.
- Kirk Cousins and the 49ers have been linked together all offseason. Rich Tandler explains how the 49ers drafting a QB this weekend would affect Cousins' future in D.C. and possibly with San Fran.
- When will the Redskins hire their next GM? Bruce Allen tells CSN his plans for doing so.
Draft busts: 15 draft busts taken in Round 1
- Each year, teams hope to use the draft and build a foundation for a winning future. That doesn't always work, however. Here are the 15 biggest draft busts in recent history. Browns fans, look away.
NFL Draft history: The best players taken 17th overall
- Here's a list detailing the best players ever selected at No. 17, including one player who led Washington to a Super Bowl.
From February to July of 2016, Redskins fans anxiously waited for news that quarterback Kirk Cousins would agree to a contract extension with the franchise. It never happened. It's late April, and Cousins and Washington are on the same track in 2017.
While fans grow wary of the lack of movement towards a new deal, some league sources think contract talks will heat up as the calendar draws closer to the July 15 deadline.
That doesn't mean Cousins can't have a good sense of humor about things.
To be clear, this is another year of Cousins working to promote the Holland Hospital in his hometown in Michigan. This is not an extension with the Redskins. And it gave a number of Redskins fans an outburst of excitement before a stark realization. Below are a few Twitter responses:
Considering how testy the contract talks between the 'Skins and Cousins representatives have been at times, it's good to see the club's all-time single season passing yards record holder be able to laugh about things.
It doesn't, however, mean much about the actual negotiations between Washington and Cousins.
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