Chris Ballard is one of the best general managers in the NFL, that is well-known by now. However, plenty of fans are disappointed that the Colts traded back out of the first round and only got two 2nd round picks in return (one this year, one next year) from the Washington Redskins.
The Colts did well on trading away the #26 pick, as all of the valuable interior defensive lineman were already gone (Tillery was still there, but he is not in the same class as Wilkins, Williams or Oliver), and the other positions the Colts need (CB, WR, Edge) still have plenty of quality players left. In fact, according to the Draft guide, the top 3 cornerbacks are still on the board, and also the top 5 wide receivers.
Washington’s 2nd rounder next year also looks to have plenty of value, as the Redskins are not poised for a breakout 2019 season. Their roster is mediocre, their schedule is extremely unforgiving, and they will most likely have a rookie starting at quarterback.
While the Redskins’ roster does have some above-average players like Trent Williams, Jordan Reed, or Brandon Scherff, they lack elite talent at the skill positions and their defense is aging and not well put together. Rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins can’t be expected to succeed when his starting running back is 34 years old, his backup is a rookie coming off an ACL tear, his #1 receiver’s name is Josh Doctson (whose career has been uninspiring to say the least), there is not much depth behind Doctson, and his tight end is unreliable. The only thing Haskins has going for him is the quality of his offensive line, even though they took a step back last year.
The Redskin’s defense has some blue-chip-caliber players, but overall, the flaws and weaknesses are evident. Washington’s secondary is depleted. Josh Norman is nowhere close the player he used to be, Landon Collins is average at best defending the pass, DRC is getting older and slower, and there is not much more to write home about after that. Washington’s front 7 looks solid, with players like Da’Ron Payne, Jonathan Allen, Ryan Anderson and now rookie Montez Sweat, but the level of talent might not be enough to mask the coverage deficiencies.
Making assumptions about a team’s schedule on April is not smart, because there are always surprising and under-performing teams, but the Redskins’ schedule looks quite tough right now. Realistically, the Redskins could easily finish the season 5-11 or 6-10, which should be bad enough for a top 12 pick. Their division (aside from the Giants) is very difficult, and they face some tough opponents like the Patriots, Jets, 49ers, and Vikings.
Considering the Redskins ended their last season ice-cold (also due to the fact they had Josh Johnson starting at quarterback), it is safe to assume there are plenty of flaws on the team, and so far they have not been fixed in the offseason, aside from Haskins.
Even though Haskins looks like the most pro-ready quarterback in the entire class, keep in mind this is still a guy that started just 22 games in his entire collegiate career. Haskins has all the qualities to become an elite NFL quarterback, but he is nowhere near that just yet, which is why his first season could be a rocky one. The lack of surrounding talent also does not help and could lead to the Redskins’ offense becoming downright awful.
Overall, I do not understand why the Redskins pulled the trigger on the trade. They are in no position to win now, and are a few seasons away from building a truly solid roster, so why trade away valuable draft capital just to get a pass rusher that was not even the best defensive lineman on his own team? Ballard got a pretty good deal, and the Colts are in a very good position right now. The team has three picks in a second round that appears to be full of talent, and also got an undervalued 2020 second-rounder in the process.
What do you think of the Colts-Redskins trade?
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