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Daily Fantasy Golf Lineup: The Greenbrier Classic 2015

Tony Finau

Date: July 2-5, 2015
Location: White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia
Course: The Old White TPC
Purse: $6,700,000

Tony Finau ($9,800) — With six consecutive top-25 finishes (five top-20’s and two top-10’s), Tony Finau continues to put together an awesome rookie campaign. He’s seventh in driving distance (307.7) and hitting 67.66 percent of greens in regulation, both of which bode well for Old White. Given his recent form (and salary), Finau was my first guy on the roster this week.

Morgan Hoffmann ($6,400) — Although his salary this week seems most attractive, don’t overlook Morgan Hoffmann’s efficiency on the greens. He ranks first in scrambling between 20 and 30 yards, and 91st in overall scrambling, all of which is backed by his ability to knock down long putts (29th in strokes gained putting; 10th in overall putting).

Kevin Kisner ($10,200) — Kevin Kisner is my big spend of the weekend. Bubba Watson is obviously a popular choice, but he’ll also cost you more than a quarter of your salary cap. Paul Casey is a hot name given his recent form, but $12,300 seems too rich (although I do like him a lot this week). Webb Simpson should also be a popular play, but he nor the rest of the top-tier players will offer you the same roster flexibility as Kisner, who’s the lowest salary of any five-figure guy in this tournament. Kisner has three top-ten finishes in his last five tournaments and he’s executing with precision from all over the place. He should be in the running to win the whole thing.

Carl Pettersson ($7,500) — I teetered between Chris Stroud and Carl Pettersson, ultimately siding with Pettersson after last week’s fifth-place performance (acknowledging Stroud’s strong play as well). Pettersson is long off the tee and coming off a solid putting outing last week at the Travelers. He also ranks 16th with 273 birdies this season. For this price, Pettersson comes with good upside.

Patrick Rodgers ($8,000) — Probably seen as more of a wildcard this week, but I think Old White sets up well for a player like Patrick Rodgers. He ranks first in driving distance, 81st in scrambling, and 74th in strokes gained putting.

Will Wilcox ($8,100) — After a disappointing cut last weekend at the Travelers, here’s to hoping Will Wilcox gets back on track this week in West Virginia. He’s 32nd in strokes gained putting, 12th in scrambling, and 17th in GIR percentage. Wilcox is another guy who matches up well with the course.

Side Notes:

  • You could entertain the idea of rostering Tiger Woods for $8,600 this weekend, but why would you? Just say no.
  • I picked Carl Pettersson over him, but Chris Stroud feels like a decent play.
  • Sometimes we talk about players and mention something along the lines of, “he’s just due something here soon.” While I don’t generally play that way, Justin Thomas kind of fits the mold this week.
  • Least expensive guy I’d roster this week: Chez Reavie ($5,800).
  • Another guy to like (I think): David Lingmerth.
  • Clearly there are favorites in this tournament, but Greenbrier still feels mostly wide-open.

 

Don’t Live in Fear: Kelly Oubre is a Good Thing for the Wizards

kelly oubre

When it was all said and done, the Wizards would’ve likely had their pick of the prospects most rumored and mocked to be heading their way at No. 19 — Bobby Portis, Jerian Grant, Delon Wright, Justin Anderson, Kevon Looney. But with a slight slip for one guy, and a surprising trade (kind of) by Wizards general manager Ernie Grunfeld, Washington ended up landing a potential lottery talent in Kansas freshman Kelly Oubre.

As the Atlanta Hawks took the clock and made the 15th-overall pick, Yahoo!’s Adrian Wojnarowski dropped one his ten million #WojBombs for the night, stating Washington had traded for the 15th-overall pick and would select Oubre. But on the television broadcast (who was slowly drudging through Woj’s dust all night), the Hawks were making their pick and there was no mention of a trade.

Ultimately it was a deal in which the Hawks selected for the Wiz and vice versa. In exchange for Oubre, Washington swapped first-round picks with thema and sent two future second-round picksb.

A few things as part of the initial reaction, at least on my end:

  • “Whoa. Cool. The Wizards just scored some serious talent.”
  • “Given how Ernie uses his second-round picksc, this is actually a solid haul for the front office.”
  • “Wait, this guy’s gonna need to develop. Can Washington do that?”

But I’ve had time now. I’ve slept on it. I’ve thought about it (some more), and here’t goes.

  • Kelly Oubre isn’t ready to contribute right now, and while the selfish fan in me wants to be frustrated, I’m very much okay with tapping into some patience and waiting this one out…mainly because I believe Oubre can be really, really good.
  • It’s not a straight comparison, but watching Oubre reminds me a little bit of Trevor Ariza, mainly based on two attributes: his ability to disrupt passing lanes with his length and quickness, and his ability to knock down both spot-up threes and trailing threes.
  • When people refer to a prospect as being “raw”, a guy like Oubre is who they’re talking about. You can see the potential when you watch him play — the size, the slashing ability, the splashy long-range shots, the above-the-rim throwdowns — but none of that translates right away. There’s required time for development in which he works on what he knows and learns what he doesn’t.
  • That said, working and practicing alongside young stars like John Wall and Bradley Beal should be good for Oubre’s development. Not only from an on-court perspective in which playing with a guy like Wall helps your own game, but also from an off-the-court standpoint in which Oubre can see how the young stars operate (working out, responsibilities, life off the court, etc.).
  • And while on the topic of teammates who can assist in grooming a young wing, who better than Paul Pierce? The veteran was a massive plus in the leadership department last season, helping the likes of Wall and Beal, and here’s to hoping the Wiz can lure him back, if not for the sole purpose of beating up on Oubre and shooting UNBELIEVABLE SHOTS come playoff time. Wine and dine that man, Ernie. WINE AND DINE HIM!
  • Ultimately, Kelly Oubre can be a stud. As fans, we have to put all faith in the coaching staff and the players currently on the roster, as well as pray that Randy Wittman doesn’t destroy the young man in a fun-loving bare-knuckles boxing match after a random Wednesday practice.
  • I can’t remember where I heard it (somewhere on draft night), but they described Oubre’s potential as, “a guy who could win both the dunk contest and the three-point contest.” That’s pretty solid.
  • There are odd (and totally frickin’ rad) connections popping up all over the interwebs about the friendship (or maybe even mentorship-ish) between Oubre and the gawd Kevin Durant. Read into that if you want. Or don’t. I KNOW I AM. #KD2DC, ya’ll.
  • Read things, watch things, listen to things, the consensus on Oubre seems to echo three main notes: good character, lots of potential, final product will require some patience. I’m not calling him bust-proof, but none of those are bad things.

Moving on to what I don’t like about Oubre when I watch him, ALL OF WHICH ARE CORRECTABLE, GUYS, so no worries.

  • Inconsistent effort on defense — and it’s probably atop the list. Because we’ve seen Oubre be a lockdown defender, because there’s no doubting his length, and because we know he has the quickness to stay in front of (arguably) three positions, we know this whole effort thing is curable. But geez, when you see it, it’s the most frustrating thing.
  • Oubre isn’t a great ball handler at this stage in his career, so there’s plenty left to be desired in that department. However, playground-legend handles aren’t exactly required (see: Arizaisms) for what I think I imagine him being as a player.d
  • Everything about him matches the description of a guy who can brush off a screen and knockdown a jumper, but that’s not necessarily the case. He can spot, he can trail, but bring him off a screen and Oubre isn’t nearly as efficient. Need those, bro.
  • What I’m about to say is so, so wrong, but it’s honest. As the story goes (according to Ernie and Randy), the Wizards didn’t bring in Oubre for a workout simply because they didn’t think he’d be available. They thought he was a possible lottery pick. But then, once Oubre became attainable, it was a “no-brainer” pick. This very much scares me a whole bunch, and it’s not because of Kelly Oubre the player. It’s because of Ernie Grunfeld.

Grunfeld’s track record when it comes to the draft is far from solid, and therefore we all have a right to be at least a little scared. But overall, this feels good. This feels like the Wizards worked efficiently, landed some really good potential, and they have trust in their team and staff to groom Kelly Oubre into something great. And until that plan fails miserably, I refuse to live in fear. I liked Oubre before the draft and I like him even more now that he’s in Washington.

Happy Draft Season!

#OuBRO

  1. The Wizards selected Jerian Grant at No. 19 for the Hawks  (back)
  2. The Hawks then turned around and traded Jerian Grant to the Knicks in exchange for Tim Hardaway Jr., which leaves Atlanta fans like, “Wait, wait, wait…where is Danny Ferry?”  (back)
  3. Very limited value placed on those bad boys. Like, either sell ‘em for cash or draft’n stash. That’s it.  (back)
  4. That was a confusing sentence.  (back)

NBA 2015 Draft Class Superlatives, from a Washington Wizards Fan

The NBA draft takes place Thursday night and it’s an exciting time (most of the time) for most teams looking to add fresh blood to their roster. If you’re a Wizards fan, the draft is both exciting and terrifying, but probably more so terrifying given the nightmares of Kwame Brown, Jan Vesely, Oleksiy Pecherov, and the overall draft strategy (?) of general manager Ernie Grunfeld.

There’s no rhyme or reason to what you’re about to read, other than it consists of tidbits and opinions from a Wizards fan. Potential here, bust there, and weird stuff in between — we’ll refer to it as a superlative list of sorts for the 2015 NBA draft class.

 

Getting to Know the Euros

There’s two guys getting most of the attention and they’re near locks to be top-10 picks.

kris porzingis

Kristaps Porzingis — a 7’1″ lights-out shooter from Latvia who enters the draft at just 19 years old. Plenty of teams will fall in love with Porzingis’ combination of length and shooting range, with concerns about his strength and ability on defense. He has the potential to be something special and everything rests on his development.

Mario Hezonja — a prototypical wing player (6’8″) with the ability to do a little bit of everything. Hezonja can shoot it from anywhere, he can guard other wings, and the Croatian has some swagger to him too. Of the two most-talked about Euros, Porzingis may have the highest ceiling, but Hezonja probably has the higher floor.

 

Most Likely to be a Stud

I’m good with putting a few guys in this category, including the obvious.

stanley johnson

Karl-Anthony Towns — my No. 1 guy in this draft if someone were crazy enough to put me in charge of an NBA franchise, Karl-Anthony Towns has the size, the defense, and the passing ability to be a stud big man; and he comes with (what’s likely to be) very marketable initials that could easily transform into the nickname Big KAT. Hello, intangibles.

Jahlil Okafor — some people like to get on Jahlil Okafor because of his defense (me, kind of), and others like to get on Jahlil Okafor because he hails from Duke (definitely me), but he’s still a 20/10 guy at the next level. There’s a little concern regarding the rumors about his commitment and passion for the game, but that sort of thing isn’t necessarily fact. He’s a powerful body with all the tools to consistently score in the low post and he has prototypical size for the center position.

D’Angelo Russell — I heard Jay Bilas call D’Angelo Russell the best pure basketball talent in this draft, and I don’t think that’s so much of a bold statement as it is a true one. Point guards are so damn valuable in this league and Russell offers (a lot of) something in every category. He can score, he has size (6’4″), he has handles, he’s a brilliant passer, he has ice water running through his veins, and — oh yeah — he’s only 19 years young. It may take him a little while to adjust to the lead guard role at the next level, but Russell’s a stud.

Stanley Johnson — us East-coasters really didn’t get to see enough of Stanley Johnson last season, but his versatility is a lot of fun to watch. At 6’6″, 242 pounds, Johnson has great size for the wing and can defend everything from two-guards to small bigs, not to mention a jumpshot on the opposite end that demands respect. Johnson is the complete package, from athleticism, to size, to offense, to defense, and he’s still only 19 years old with plenty of room to grow. He’ll be around a while.

Myles Turner — maybe I’m in the minority with this one, maybe not, but with all the NBA discussion about stretching the floor and the value placed on bigs who can stray away from the paint and demand respect for their outside shot, Myles Turner is a name we should all talk about more. He’s every bit of 6’11” with room to build, his offensive game is some of the best in this year’s center class, he has an outside shot with tons of promise/potential, and he’s strong on defense, averaging nearly three blocks per game as a freshman last season.

 

Personal Favorites

No real direction with this segment, but here’s a few dudes I think I like.

myles turner

Myles Turner — for reasons that were explained earlier. There’s a ton of intrigue here and his potential is a great match for the way in which the game is trending.

Terry Rozier — a tough point guard with some do-it-all characteristics, Terry Rozier is a really good athlete with some length and the ability to hurt a defense by way of scoring or passing. There are other names talked about before his in the point guard discussion, but it wouldn’t surprise me if Rozier is eventually one of the better floor generals to come out of this class.

Willie Cauley-Stein — it’s no secret that Willie Cauley-Stein is a one-way player at this point, but his high energy and reliable rim protection warrants a high pick. Not to mention, with his ability to consistently get up and down the floor, WCS makes for an awesome running mate in transition. And one more thing, he legally made his nickname “Trill”…

Sam Dekker — tons and tons of Gordon Hayward comparisons, and I guess that’s accurate. Sam Dekker has good size heading into the NBA, he’s a knockdown shooter, and does a lot of good things on defense. Like Hayward, I wouldn’t expect anything spectacular or demonstrating elite athleticism, but I think Dekker is a solid NBA wing.

Motrezl Harrell — Hustle, board-crashing, muscle, passion, attitude, grit — there’s lots to love about Motrezl Harrell. Although he’s slightly undersized (6’8″) for his power forward position, Harrell has crazy length and more than enough effort. With a re/defined offensive game, we’re talking about Harrell as a lottery guy. Either way, I think he makes lots of money and a long career as a valuable role player in the NBA.

 

Biggest Upside

Even if it feels like a huge gamble, it’s the potential reward that moves us to put our doubts aside and turn in the ticket. These are the guys who could push me into ignoring any sort of weakness and instead focus solely on what they could be.

kelly oubre

Kristaps Porzingis — is he wowing us with pre-draft workouts a la Yi Jianlian, or could he turn out to be something like a Gasol-witzki? Kind of a big difference.

Trey Lyles — although nothing stands out as an elite skill, Trey Lyles is a 19-year-old with a solid overall foundation and the potential to become a consistent double-double machine. His defense is pretty meh at the time and he’s not a crazy athlete, but there’s lots of skill to work with on offense.

Kelly Oubre — he’s a guy with the potential to be an awesome 3-and-D wing in the NBA and I’d say that warrants lottery consideration.

 

Most Likely to be a Late-Round Gem

The criteria here includes fringe first-rounders and guys who are more likely to be chosen in the second round. As a result, that means names that aren’t as familiar.

justin anderson

Luis Montero — he’s 6’7″ with good length, he’s a good passer, and he’s got really good handles. Luis Montero doesn’t have valuable experience at this stage in his career, but his core talent at this point provides the potential. At his peak, he could be a skilled and versatile player.

Justin Anderson — there’s a good chance he goes late-first, but if not, Justin Anderson will be a nice piece to someone’s team. He’s smart, possesses really good athleticism, he’s a worker on defense, and he has the size/build to hang at the next level. Solid do-it-all player, but without the splash and flash.

Olivier Hanlan — he may not offer a whole lot outside of scoring the basketball, but Olivier Hanlan is really really good at scoring the basketball. He enters the league as a effective and legitimate scoring threat.

 

(Should Be/Hopefully) Wizards Radar

There’s a ton of names I’d like to include here, but No. 19 is a tough spot for the Wizards. It’s too far away from the lottery to capitalize on any fallers, and the team’s not in a great position to trade this and that in order to move here and there (#KD2DC), so it makes for lots of possibilities, and then again lots of non-possibilities.

But for the sake of rooting for certain prospects, here’s a few names (in no particular order) with a chance to land at No. 19 and the potential for them to contribute to Washington’s efforts.

bobby portis

Bobby Portis — has good size for the power forward spot and he has some shooting range to go with it, which would help fill a role for the Wizards. His effort shows up on the glass and he’s got some hustle to his game. If Bobby Portis happens to be there, the pick makes a lot of sense.

Frank Kaminsky — it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Frank Kaminsky go in the top-10, but it also wouldn’t surprise me if he fell a bit. At 7’1″ and the range to get it done, Frank the Tank is a stretch-big well worth consideration.

Kelly Oubre — I’ve seen him as high as the lottery in some places, and in the 20’s in others, so Kelly Oubre is on this list. Although he may not be the specific position the Wizards are looking for, Oubre has too much potential (perhaps even star potential) to pass up.

Terry Rozier — the Wizards are in need of a backup point guard and Terry Rozier can do just about everything you ask of him. He’d also give the team some offensive spark off the bench with his ability to not only drive the paint, but also knock down the three.

Jerian Grant — sticking with backup point guard prospects, Jerian Grant is a local kid that can step in right away and provide the team valuable minutes. He has the size, he has the athleticism, he can score, and he has the length to defend. It feels safe.

Montrezl Harrell — whenever I watched Motrezl Harrell last season, I thought about him running alongside John Wall on a fastbreak and throwing down insane dunks. And while that would certainly work for the Wizards, Harrell doesn’t really provide the ideal offensive game for this team. That said, there’s always room for a passionate player with non-stop hustle, rebounding talent, athleticism, length, and the ability to defend.

Happy Draft Night!

 

Nene’s Rebound Attempt in the Closing Seconds of Game 5

Nene’s failed rebound attempt at the final horn wasn’t the only reason the Wizards lost Game 5 to the Hawks on Wednesday night. Shooting just 37 percent from the field and failing to capitalize on their opponent’s 23 turnovers; knocking down only four shots from long range; getting minimal production from their bench — those are all contributors too. But for the sake of argument, here’s Nene’s attempted rebound under a microscope.

Setting the Scene

With just eight seconds left in the game and trailing 80-78, the Wizards set up an awesome play to get Paul Pierce open in the corner and the Truth knocks down a three to give Washington the lead. Atlanta calls timeout. During the timeout, Nene comes in for Marcin Gortat.

The Hawks come out of the timeout, and with just under four seconds to go, point guard Dennis Schroder drives the lane to attempt a layup, a shot attempt in which John Wall blocks. The ball goes awry off the backboard and toward the waiting hands of one Nene Hilario.

A charging Al Horford enters the lane and snatches the rebound, Nene falls and clears out two teammates in the process, and Horford converts an easy layup with one second left. The Wizards lose.

Possible Gripe(s)

Being upset with Nene as an initial reaction is understandable. I’m guilty of it too. But the frustration doesn’t begin and end with this specific play. His underwhelming performance throughout these entire playoffs has bugged fans and this final play of a losing effort was enough to make the weak sauce boil over.

Still shots also give you the impression that Nene had the ball in his hands. I’m again willing to put my emotions aside and recognize that 1) because you’re touching the ball doesn’t mean you’re securing possesssion and 2) watching the clip at full/live speed is really the only way to judge how much control Nene had of the ball.

But while on the topic of stills…

Nene Rebound 1

Nene Rebound 2

Nene Rebound 3

Again, the frustration with Nene doesn’t begin and end with this play. It was just the cherry on top. The Wizards dropped a winnable game for lots of reasons and they wasted feel-good moments like Pierce’s dagger three-pointer and John Wall’s heroics in the process. It all just really really stings.

Lionel Messi Broke Jerome Boateng…Quite Literally

Barcelona took control in Champions League play today, defeating Bayern Munich 3-0 in first-leg action. But the more fascinating piece of action was when Lionel Messi did his thing and broke Bayern defender Jerome Boateng at the ankle bone(s).

It’s unclear whether a sniper took out Boateng with a tranquilizer dart or if this was simply a wicked game of FIFA in which one player’s controller was abruptly disconnected, but word has it that Boateng is expected to make a full recovery.

NFL Draft Hangover: Redskins Select Brandon Scherff

Brandon Scherff

Scot McCloughan is so damn good. Even if you didn’t like the Redskins selecting Brandon Scherff with last night’s fifth overall picka, it’s impossible to actually hate it. You may have preferred Leonard Williams after he surprisingly fell past Oaklandb, but Scherff checks every single box for not only McCloughan, but for the Redskins’ improving efforts on all levels.

And assuming reports are true, McCloughan stuck with the draft strategy he said he would. According to NFL.com’s Albert Breer, Scherff was atop the Redskins’ board when their name was called to make a selection.

A few notes and nuggets regarding Brandon Scherff as the Redskins’ top pick in 2015:

* We’re not sure how the rest of the draft unfolds for Washington, but the Redskins improved the surroundings for Robert Griffin III, further establishing the support behind him as he heads into next season. Had Amari Cooper been the Redskins pick, we would’ve been talking about the same thing — providing Griffin with every opportunity to shine in 2015. McCloughan is straight-face serious about seeing what Griffin can do and deciding how to move forward at the quarterback position.

* Judging a draft pick is also easier when your team has multiple areas to improve and just about any position is viable with your top pick. Such is the case in Washington, where upgrading the offensive line was addressing an area of need.

* “When you get done playing [the Redskins], you know you’re playing them. You’re going to feel it. I want those guys,” McCloughan said, according to Tom Schad of the Washington Times.

Quotes like that make me giddy. Not only because that’s the sound of a true football mind leading up your favorite team’s front office, but also because that mission was achieved in the first round with a guy like Scherff who will bring a new attitude to the offensive line and a heavy dose of nasty for new offensive line coach Bill Callahan to coach and groom.

* Would the Redskins have preferred to trade back and still land Scherff? Uhh, yeah I’m sure. But it takes two to make a deal and perhaps it wasn’t worth the risk. If the Redskins trade back and acquire more picks, but as a result land behind, say, the Giants at nine, it’s a safe bet New York takes Scherff instead of Ereck Flowers and suddenly the Redskins are moving down their board. So when we’re discussing value here, I think the Redskins score well. They got a position they wanted, a player they wanted, and a high-floor/safe guy in Scherff. After the dude starts a dozen seasons in the NFL, no one will talk about how No. 5 was “just too high”.

  1. …which you SHOULD like it. Like, a lot.  (back)
  2. I’m a Leonard fan too.  (back)

NFL Draft: Weighing the Redskins’ Options at No. 5

scot mccloughan 2

As time ticks down to the start of the 2015 NFL draft, being a Redskins fan suddenly doesn’t feel the same this year. Not only is having a first-round selection after going two consecutive years without one a nice change of scenery, but competency in the front office by way of new general manager Scot McCloughan also helps to reassure the organization is in good hands (at least from a roster development standpoint).

Given that they hold the fifth-overall pick, as well as a disastrous 4-12 record from a season ago, the Redskins could/should/maybe will have a number of different ways to go by the time their name is called on Thursday night. And while the entire idea of mock drafts is nothing more than a laughable game of darts and guesses (here’s our latest version, by the way), the following is meant to form a list of possibilities for Washington at No. 5 and rank them from least likely (10) to most likely (1).

The Redskins are one team I really don’t know what they’ll do. Scot McCloughan keeps it pretty close to the vest.

– League executive regarding the draft’s top-ten [source]

* * * *

10. Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon

Ever since McCloughan mentioned that he and his staff wouldn’t rule out a quarterback at No. 5, the Mariota-to-Washington thing (if you can even call it a thing) has been somewhat of a hot topic.

Sure, you could argue a need at the quarterback position in Washington, but this feels more like strategic posturing than anything. It’d be silly for McCloughan — who has admitted interest in acquiring more picks in this draft — to completely write off his own team’s interest in a prospect that should/would/will garner a potential trade-up opportunity. He’s keeping things interesting, maintaining a poker face, and making things a little tougher on contending front offices.

9. Bud Dupree, EDGE, Kentucky

With his freakish athleticism and natural twitch, Bud Dupree is one of the more intriguing pass rushers in this draft, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Redskins address the position this early on.

At this point in the draft, however, you’re assuming either Dante Fowler Jr., Vic Beasley, or possibly both are still available, and I think both of those guys rank higher on boards due to them both having a higher floor than Dupree. As mentioned in the scouting report, there’s a ton to like about Dupree, but he’s rawer than others at this stage in his career.

8. Kevin White, WR, West Virginia

Although no position would truly be a surprise in this draft, it seems like drafting a wideout would draw the most inadvertent WTFs amongst the Twitterverse. People see Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson and wrongfully assume the position is solidified. Look a bit further down the depth chart and you’ll notice that, after those guys, there isn’t much left to wow you. Not to mention, adding a threatening red zone target wouldn’t be such a bad idea.

Kevin White is the complete package in terms of size, strength, speed, and ball skills. At 6’3″, 215 pounds, White would immediately become the team’s most lethal target in a number of areas and he’d fit the criteria of the front office looking to surround Robert Griffin III with as much talent as possible.

7. La’El Collins, OT, LSU

Upgrading the offensive line with power and size is on the menu with McCloughan and new offensive line coach Bill Callahan in the kitchen, and there should be plenty of bulldozer talent to choose from at No. 5.

With Trent Williams at left tackle, La’El Collins would likely slide in as your starter along the right side. He has quick feet to go along with a powerful frame and the ability to swallow oncoming defenders so long as his technique is sound.

And depending on how the Redskins view his athleticism, they may even view Collins as a mauler at the guard position. The only trouble there, however, would be the idea that drafting a guard at No. 5 is too high. Whether McCloughan gives a hoot about such theory is yet to be seen.

6. Leonard Williams, DL, Southern Cal

Regardless of what your team needs, whether you’re picking first or 32nd, Leonard Williams is an upgrade to your team’s roster. At 6’5″, 300 pounds, Williams is an imposing and forceful load along the defensive front, and he very well may have the highest floor of any top-rated prospect in this class. Even with their recent free agent additions up front, the Redskins clearly fall into play here.

Unfortunately, it’s hard to imagine Williams making it past Oakland at 4. His talent is deserving of the first-overall pick and every team picking before the Redskins (TEN, JAX, OAK) could easily benefit from his services.

If he’s there for the Redskins at 5, great — I just wouldn’t count on it.

5. Shane Ray, EDGE, Missouri

There’s a wide range of opinion when it comes to Shane Ray. On the one end, people see Ray as the best pure pass rusher in this class and they use his game tape to prove it. On the other end, many view Ray as limited due to his lack of versatility and size.

Although I tend to lean toward the former (you can check out the scouting report here), I recognize the latter as well. For what it’s worth though, I don’t think it affects Ray’s stock much. Teams who look to add him are going after a guy they can throw on the field to hunt the quarterback and go full speed at all times. Ray gives you that.

What may affect Ray’s stock, however, is his latest citation for marijuana possession just three days before the draft. As it is in most situations like these, it’s not exactly the drug choice that teams are worried about, but rather the judgement. What does it say about the guy if he’s this careless only days before (possibly) earning millions of dollars?

The Redskins could use some beef to rush the passer, but Ray’s recent run-in may not bode well for a perfect fit in Washingtona.

4. Brandon Scherff, OL, Iowa

Arguably one of the safest names on this list, Brandon Scherff would immediately bolster the Redskins offensive line. Coaches would have their choice as to whether to play him at right tackle — where he has plenty of strength and athleticism to win — or kick him inside to guard and perhaps get the best return on their investment.

You’ll hear stuff about No. 5 being entirely too early to draft a guard (if you see him as that), but in terms of what McCloughan covets in a lineman, Scherff checks all of the boxes — high floor, solid worker, tough as nails, big and strong.

If the Redskins go offensive line at No. 5, my money’s on them doing so with Scherff.

3. Dante Fowler Jr., EDGE, Florida

When it comes to edge rushers, Dante Fowler Jr’s name probably sits atop a fair share of team’s boards. He has great size, athleticism, versatility, and effort, all of which will translate seamlessly to the NFL, and he may tote the highest ceiling of any pass rusher in the draft. Check out the rest of the scouting report here.

Fowler would be a great fit in Washington, and we know the Second-Team All-American has recently visited Ashburn for a private workout. It’d be hard to see the Redskins passing on Fowler if he’s there, unless of course they liked another edge rusher just a bit more.

2. Vic Beasley, EDGE, Clemson

If the Jaguars go with an edge rusher at No. 3, my gut says they go Dante Fowler, in which case the Redskins should have their stab at Vic Beasley — an explosive athlete with underrated power and good balance. While arguably not as versatile as Fowler, Beasley is very good at what you’re drafting him to do, and that’s getting after the quarterback.

It’d be interesting to see how the Redskins react with both Fowler and Beasley sitting there at No. 5, but that situation doesn’t seem likely. Either guy would fit the bill of improving the pass rush in Washington, but Beasley gets my nod based off (anticipated) availability and overall talent level (although it’s close).

1. Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama

Availability, best player available, improving your roster, improving your current players — throw all those things into an equation machine for the Redskins and you’re likely coming up with a product named Amari Cooper.

Touted as a can’t-miss prospect, Cooper has the full package in terms of speed, hands, and route running. He has great feet combined with a good understanding of coverage and his potential is that of a quarterback’s best friend.

Kevin White may be the flashier name atop the receiver board, but Cooper is the more sure thing. If McCloughan really goes into this thing with BPA mentality, it’d be hard to argue anyone over Cooper if he’s still there at 5.

 

  1. And despite the weed thing, I still don’t see Ray getting past Atlanta.  (back)
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