Inside the Redskins draft: Wide Receivers

Inside the Redskins draft: Wide Receivers
April 13, 2011, 10:47 am
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Wednesday, April 13, 2011 6:30 a.m. By Rich Tandler
Redskins Blogger
CSNwashington.com Need: Leading receiver Santana Moss is a free agent and even if he stays with the Redskins a replacement will need to be found soon. Regardless of Moss status, depth at the position is needed. Target rounds: Many mock drafts have the Redskins using the first pick on a wide receiver, as Julio Jones may be the best player on the board when the Redskins first-round selection comes up at No. 10. Even if they dont pull the trigger on Jones, it is likely that they will be looking for candidates to fill out the depth chart later in the draft. Inside the selection Jones ran a blazing fast 4.39 in the 40 at the NFL Combine and he did it with a foot that needed surgical repair afterwards (the injury is not considered to be a long-term issue). At 6-4, 211, his combination of size and speed could make him an effective receiver even as he learns the finer points of the game during his first couple of seasons in the league. In addition, he is not afraid the throw his body around while blocking downfield. If the Redskins dont trade down, odds are that Jones will be the pick at number 10 if he is there. A. J. Green of Georgia may well end up being a more productive player than Jones, but he might have a steeper learning curve. Green vs. Jones is a moot issue for the Redskins as he probably will be off the board by the time the Redskins pick. Torrey Smith of Maryland has great speed but he needs coaching on the finer points of playing the position. Thats OK, because you cant teach fast. Another option if the Redskins are looking for a big-play receiver in the middle rounds might be to look at Leonard Hankerson of Miami. He needs a lot of work on route running but he was a big-play receiver for the Hurricanes and he would be worth a look if the Redskins manage to acquire a third-round pick in a trade. The Redskins dont have to trade to get any late-round picksthey already have five in the last three rounds. A good pick there would be Greg Salas of Hawaii, one of the most productive receivers in this draft. I dont care what kind of offense youre playing or the quality of the defenses you face, 119 catches in a season, which is what Salas accomplished last year, is impressive. Even though he never will be a No. 1 receiver, a potentially good slot receiver is certainly worth a fifth round pick. Tandlers Top Ten Wide Receivers Prospects are rated considering where the Redskins might be looking for players at the position and the players fit with the Redskins schemes. Julio Jones, AlabamaSize and speed make him a top-ten value; drops a concernA. J. Green, GeorgiaA human highlight reelTorrey Smith, MarylandSpeed to burn, somewhat stiff, game needs polishJonathan Baldwin, PittAthletic but inconsistentLeonard Hankerson, MiamiBig-play ability, may have trouble separating from NFL cornersJerrell Jernigan, TroyExcellent after the catchAustin Pettis, Boise StateGood frame, lacks explosiveness Greg Little, North CarolinaGood size and can pluck the ball out of the air wellGreg Salas, HawaiiA possible late-round stealRicardo Lockette, Fort Valley StateAlso has potential as a return man Rich Tandler blogs about the Redskins at www.RealRedskins.com. You can reach him by email at RTandlerCSN@comcast.net and follow him on Twitter @Rich_Tandler. Special thanks to Wes Bunting of the National Football Post for his assistance.