Three and out: Washington Redskins' 2018 NFL draft needs, prospect fits
In the build-up to the 2018 draft, USA TODAY Sports will take a look at each NFL team's situation and needs.
1. An athletic, roaming linebacker has been a need for several seasons, and this draft has a few blue-chip prospects at the position.
Advice: Holding the No. 13 overall selection, Washington could have two potential Day 1 starters to pick from in Georgia’s Roquan Smith and Virginia Tech’s Tremaine Edmunds. In later rounds, South Carolina State’s Darius Leonard and USC’s Uchenna Nwosu could fill that need.
2. A run-stuffing nose tackle is a priority. Washington ranked dead last in rushing defense last season, allowing 134.1 yards per game.
Advice: If Washington decides to address that issue in the first round, Washington’s Vita Vea is the clear choice. If he’s taken by then, Alabama’s Da’Ron Payne would be the next option if the team is willing to take him earlier than he has been projected to be selected. If Washington waits until the second round, Virginia Tech’s Tim Settle and Stanford’s Harrison Phillips could both be options.
3. The loss of cornerback Bashaud Breeland left an opening at cornerback. The team quickly filled it with the signing of former Cowboys mainstay Orlando Scandrick, but Washington could still use some help in the secondary.
Advice: One option the team could take is using its first-round selection on a do-it-all defensive back like Alabama’s Minkah Fitzpatrick or Florida State’s Derwin James, both of whom can handle a variety of roles in the secondary. Another versatile safety option who could be available later is Wake Forest’s Jessie Bates.
Follow Lorenzo Reyes on Twitter @LorenzoGReyes.