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Examiner: "A great choice — but was he the best choice?"

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A great choice — but was he the best choice?

by Rick Snider, The Examiner

WASHINGTON (Map, News) - There’s nothing wrong with getting a good player. There’s nothing wrong with getting a good player. There’s nothing ... sorry, I can’t convince myself the Washington Redskins came away with a solid draft.

Pairing LSU safety LaRon Landry alongside Sean Taylor leaves the Redskins with an Ali-Frazier combination. Bartenders will serve “The Tay-Lan ****tail” that leaves you hammered. Loeb’s Deli’s Monday special will be a “Receiver Sandwich” that comes smashed. I don’t want to even think of the car crash scenes by Eastern Motors.

But was it the right choice? Let’s see in three years when measuring Landry versus Louisville defensive tackle Amobi Okoye, who went to Houston as the 10th pick and Arkansas defensive end Jamaal Anderson, who was taken by Atlanta with the eighth.

I’m not completely sold on always taking the better player over need. Wasn’t Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson the best player available for the sixth pick? Washington didn’t take Peterson because it’s loaded at running back so the Redskins didn’t go for best player, they went for a need. The debate is not over players, but which need should have been filled. Too bad the Redskins blew the position twice last year when losing Ryan Clark and signing Adam Archuleta or they could have picked a lineman instead of a safety.

Washington has the makings of a great secondary, but the defense remains vulnerable up front. Would it have been wiser to have taken a lineman that stops runners for short yardage than a great secondary that can run them down? If end Andre Carter continues last season’s late run and other linemen heal, then Landry was the right choice. If not, hello old friend 5-11.

Landry lessens Taylor’s exposure on pass defense after too often twisted into a Snyder pretzel last year. Maybe Landry will even challenge Taylor to become a more complete player than simply a guided missile who crunches a couple opponents each week. With healthy cornerback Shawn Springs and third-year corner Carlos Rogers, the secondary should be “splendid” as late Redskins owner Jack Kent Cooke would say.

But, and this is one of the bigger questions of the coming season, can the line play better? The Redskins’ postseason chances now largely lie on the unit’s improvement.

Ultimately, the Redskins probably came away with a playmaker in Landry and there’s nothing wrong with that. But they also didn’t pick again for 24 hours while other teams added good prospects in the second through fourth rounds. By the time they finally picked again, it was day two of a bridal sale at Filene’s Basement — a bunch of tattered dreams.

Tattered dreams — wasn’t that last season’s motto?

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That Peterson comparison was stupid.

The whole article was. He questions the judgement in taking Landry but gives himself 3 years to see how Landry/Okoye/Anderson are doing respectively.

He moans about no picks rounds 2 through 4 but then doesn't mention 2 college team leaders both with good game stats that are brought in as much needed depth for our D plus extra bodies for STs.

It's an opinion piece without opinion. Would have been nice to see him try and say why we drafted as we did, kind of second guess the FO. Something along the lines of 'The Redskins are seamingly content with the DL back up players Golsten and Montgomery, indeed Coach Gibbs highlighted the work they are putting in over the off season in the pre draft media conference. Maybe the target is an established player, after all, 1 first year and 2 second year players potentially on your DL at the same time would give all coaches a bit of anxiety.'

Then we can all start speculating....

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Actually I found myself wondering at the time if the Best Player Available was technically Petersen. So I don't agree it was a stupid statement. Of course concerns over his injury may have affected that but, if we were truly taking BPA, then Petersen should have been a consideration.

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But the question is still valid.

great player for sure...but great pick?

I think it is personally. But I believe our DL will be solid this year and if you believe that than how could having a Landry/Taylor safety combo not be looked at as amazing?

Next years draft will be all about DL for us. There will be solid DE's and DT's available next year and that is when we'll begin builing the replacements but right now passing on Landry was impossible, the guy is a playmaker, which I don'tthink any of this years DL were (aside from Adams).

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Actually I found myself wondering at the time if the Best Player Available was technically Petersen. So I don't agree it was a stupid statement. Of course concerns over his injury may have affected that but, if we were truly taking BPA, then Petersen should have been a consideration.

It's not as simple as BPA or Need. It's a combination of BPA and Need and not wanting to give a guaranteed 15 or 20 million dollar contract to someone you're not sure of.

In our case Peterson may have come out top on our BPA chart (though that is debatable with 1 defensive player, Landry) but he would score nothing in the Need category. Landry will have scored well in the BPA column (either 1 or 2 at the time of our pick) and will also have picked up points over Peterson in the Need column. Now we have Landry above Peterson we can compare him to all the other D players. Landry score better than them all in the BPA column though LB and DL may have scored better in Need. The lack of viable trade down options then brings into play the huge salary the player picked at 6 will get. Landry has a tick mark in that column, no other Defensive player gets one.

Hence we pick Landry. Break it down and there really wasn't a choice.

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great player for sure...but great pick?

You phrased it better than the original writer. And DL could well be next years draft focus. I'm inclined to think we will be seeing how Golsten and Montgomery progress this season. If they step up to be starter capable by the end I would expect to see us using some of our picks to induce a Peppers type trade.

This would keep a balance of youth and veterans on our DL.

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Pedro, I know all that! I'm saying that their comment about Petersen was not a "stupid" one. Of course there is more to it than that, but the article seemed quite content to gloss over everything else!

Where are you from in England?

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I don't think it matters how Landry stacks up against Anderson or Okoye to be honest. If Landry's a stud and those guys suck, it's not a better pick because it worked out. A move is judged based on the merits at the time it is made, not several years later when you know if you actually picked a real player.

Landry fit a clear area of need. He did so in a way that allows the possibility of providing something better for your team than any other team can be said to have. No pick on the defensive line would have made us the best at anything. Landry gives you that possibility in the secondary.

It is always better to take the better player. No, Peterson wasn't the better player with his injury concerns, though, absent those, he would not have fallen to No. 7 in the first place.

I'm not sure those who believe taking a lesser player can be considered to be proposing a smart move. In fact, the premise itself seems fairly ridiculous, doesn't it? "Be smart by taking someone you think isn't as good." That would be the very definition of questionable by any writer seeing any football people making such a choice.

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Art,

I am curious whether you think Landry was the sort of player we would have moved up to take, had we been picking lower?

I have been successfully convinced (!) that he was the right pick at #6, although am still not convinced he was the best fit for the team as a whole.

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Art,

I am curious whether you think Landry was the sort of player we would have moved up to take, had we been picking lower?

I have been successfully convinced (!) that he was the right pick at #6, although am still not convinced he was the best fit for the team as a whole.

I think the team would have moved up to take Johnson because of his unique status as a prospect. Beyond that, I doubt anyone would have been so tempting as to move up, and Landry, as good as he is as a prospect, and and right a fit as he is on a team with no proven, consistent starter next to Taylor and no real depth in the case you lost Taylor's abilities -- mostly because it would be impossible to fully replace with a normal player -- I believe the team would have traded down without concern had a reasonable offer come in.

Landry was the right pick because he was the best player at a position of need. The team would not have been poorly served moving down and identifying the same answer -- i.e. best player available at a position of need -- there either and it could have been pretty much any position other than QB -- where you wouldn't cloud the situation with Campbell -- and running back and MAYBE corner as you go four deep this year.

Any other position would be justified on the need for a future replacement, improve depth or the current starter eventually, and many other measures. The team really couldn't have made the wrong pick beyond taking a QB or running back in the first round, or, than by taking a lesser player when they did select than taking the better player who also played a position of need.

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Pedro, I know all that! I'm saying that their comment about Petersen was not a "stupid" one. Of course there is more to it than that, but the article seemed quite content to gloss over everything else!

Where are you from in England?

In the context of the Redskins drafting I believe it can be viewed as stupid (assuming there are no thoughts within the organisation of getting rid of Betts with his ability to produce and relatively low cost contract, or Portis with his proven game breaking ability and the general lack of value in trading RBs).

RB was probably 3rd bottom of the list ahead only Kicker and Punter of position we would take with our first. Other than trade bait RBs on the board were irrelevant to us regardless of how good they may be.

From Leeds, looking forward to 3rd tier football (soccer team were effectively relegated on Saturday) next season :doh:

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Thanks Art, good argument. I don't agree with the "take another player at that position for the sake of it" either. With no reasonable options to move down (as far as we know) I guess Landry was the correct pick!

Bad luck Pedro. Guess you will have to stick with the Redskins until Leeds get promoted again! I still think "Petersen was the BPA " is not an incorrect statement ;)

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great player for sure...but great pick?

You can say that about every single player taken in the top-ten, except maybe Johnson.

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i think landry is a very good pick. it filled a need (not the biggest need) and everyone thinks he could be a stud in this league. i say good pick, maybe not the best, but very good.

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Last year our best LB didnt play up to standards because he was nicked up, our second best LB was out of position and the other LB didnt exist. Same with one of our Safties. Our best CB was injured and the other couldnt catch a cold (hopefully some of that was because of his injured hand) and we didnt have a backup CB. Our best pass rusher hadnt played DE in a while and was coming off an injury also if I remember correctly but he was starting to play much better later in the season. Plus we had other injuries along the DL with Griff and Joe.

If we can stay fairly healthy and age makes that if bigger but if we can, I think our Defense over all will be fine. We do have some depth on that side of the line. I am much more worried about our offense without a LG and a 2nd WR. If we lose an OLineman or Moss we will really be in big trouble. Thats considering we adequately replace Dockery in the first place. :2cents:

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The DL was the priority, Landry great player but we needed a great DLineman, front office stinks

Thanks for the heads up! :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

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who knows, we might try and play taylor closer to the line next season and leave landry back there with omar or pierson. now, that selection could look like an excellent move down the road.

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Well I can really shread this article apart. First how many of you thought that Peterson was the best player available at 6? I don't.

Now how many of you think our DL was soley responsible last year for the huge runs and completions against us? IMO partly yes. But for my money mostly we suffered because Holdman was just about the worse OLB in the league, our MLB played hurt and mediocre at best, Springs was hurt for a lot of our games, we lost a starting safety on the first play of the season and Marcus was also hurt for much of the season. As a result ST was forced to sneak up and then react to a pass thus getting burned often, and AA was used totaly wrong in many passing situations.

All these facts make our problems on DL secondary IMO. So what do we have now?

We have two safeties that simply can be at any time a fast LB to support against the run or blitz at will while the other doesn't have to sneak up towards the line to support LBs than can't play. Depending on how well Marcus has healed, I think our LBs will be solid to great. In addition if Springs is here and plays for us without getting hurt I say we are top 5 in passing because of the addition of this kid.

So yes it would have been nice to pick a DT or DE but correct me if I am wrong. We didn't pass on the twin of a Juliys Peppers or Richard Dent did we? No we passed on a 19 year old kid that would need a couple of years to become a man in this league.

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