Sunday, 4 April 2010

Thoughts on the McNabb trade & draft impact

By Rob Staton
The Washington Redskins have traded the 37th overall pick and a conditional 2011 pick to Philadelphia for quarterback Donovan McNabb. How does this impact the draft? For starters, you can almost certainly rule out Washington drafting Jimmy Clausen 4th overall. It appears they will almost certainly draft an offensive lineman with that pick. Many believe Russell Okung will be the choice - but personally I think Anthony Davis will be the selection. I could of course be wrong, but Davis is the best pass protector of the 2010 class and he has the most upside. There are work ethic issues, but I truly believe Mike Shanahan will love that guy.

It may also afford the Eagles to go a different direction in round one. In my latest mock draft, I had Philly taken Maurkice Pouncey 24th overall - an interior lineman. I also had Mike Iupati going 37th overall to Washington. If they believe they can get Iupati at #37, do they go elsewhere at #24?

But clearly Clausen will be the major talking point here. Washington didn't want to invest their future in the guy. We could read too much into that - McNabb is a seasoned veteran who came, in Washington's eyes, at a good price. It allowed them to go elsewhere at #4 and potentially fill two gaps on the roster instead of one. A veteran QB who has been in the post season plus the best left tackle on the board - or the second best QB and potentially no left tackle in round two? The 'Skins passing on Clausen doesn't necessarily mean he'll suffer a huge drop.

However, this could be an indication of what other teams may also think about the Notre Dame quarterback. Is there more than just McNabb's availability that moved Washington to a trade? The Seahawks could still take Clausen at #6 if they think he's franchise QB material. The Charlie Whitehurst trade suggested they perhaps didn't. In Cleveland, Mike Holmgren has been public about his views on Clausen (was it a smoke screen or just honesty?). I don't think he will interest Al Davis and I just don't see the Buffalo/Chan Gailey/Jimmy Clausen partnership. I projected Clausen to San Francisco in my last mock draft - something that, to me, would appear a good fit. The Niners aren't sold on their quarterback situation and solving that problem could be the missing piece on an otherwise solid roster.

Having said that - from very early in the 2010 draft discussion I've projected a Clausen fall as being a possibility. I wrote this article last November questioning Clausen's validity as a top ten pick. Whether Clausen falls or not will become a heated discussion between now and April 22nd. Either way - today was a significant day with regard to the 2010 NFL Draft.


A-R-N-F said...

Niners getting a franchise QB would suck, especially at 13. I much prefer them continuing their annual Alex Smith experiments.

On the other hand, it could probably mean Haden would still be on the board for our 14th pick.

Cysco said...

Doesn't this set some type of benchmark for Marshall as well? If mcnabb is worth a second and future third, no way is Marshall worth a first.

Anonymous said...

Ha-ha! The plot thicken's! A trade in the same division? Wow! How Strange!
A pro-bowler with 3 or 4 more good years left for a second this year and a third or forth next year? How's that Whitehurst trade looking now?
Your in the big leagues Coach Carroll... I sure hope you know what the heck your doing!

Tim Malone said...

As much as i love McNabb, and think that teams like the 49ers and Rams should have traded for him, and possibly picked up Brandon Marshal to boot, I think he's in for a Cutler like awakening. He didn't want out like Cutler, but he's going from lots of offensive weapons and a decent line, to a bad line with average weapons.

I think Rob might be right on Clausen, Mort from ESPN on twitter has been talking about teams liking but not loving Clausen. He could slip to the Vikings. I'm not a huge fan of the guy but I think he'd be great value for the Vikings. I'll take my chances with Clausen any day of the week over Tebow and McCoy.

Kip Earlywine said...

Thanks for posting this Rob. I saw this breaking on ESPN when I was working out earlier, and I rushed home to see you already had a post up.

This is a pretty big deal, and it confirms what I've said all along about Washington going tackle at #4.

I really like this trade from Washington's angle. What would you rather have? Okung/Davis and McNabb or Clausen and Saffold? Total no-brainer. They also give up a mid-rounder next year, but that is a small price to pay.

It also speaks of how they view Clausen too. Obviously, if they thought Clausen was the next Romo or Rodgers, they wouldn't have done this. With Seattle moving for Whitehurst, that also seems to imply that Clausen has not been impressing front offices.

Ben said...

Grabbing McNabb buys them some time to develop the OL and get a guy like McCoy more NFL-ready.

Austin said...

I think this could hurt Seattle as it has less of a chance of one of the elite guys falling. I think at 6 they have to start considering Dez Bryant even if they do pull off a trade for Marshall. He was #3 on Mayocks big board and paired with Marshall and Housh would completely revamb this offense. Probably wont happen because of the money tied up to Housh and Marshall if he lands in Seattle but I would hate to see them settle on an offensive lineman at 6 who in a normal year would be a late first rounder. Maybe Spiller,Morgan,Bryant are the best options at 6 now.....Thoughts?

micah said...

Did they make the trade before or after Clausen's workout? If before, then why bring him in at all? If after, then obviously they don't think highly of him.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't say Philly's weapons were substantially better than what Washington's could be next season. Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly are both candidates for a third year leap. Don't be surprised if Kelly in particular explodes because tall, powerful receivers have done well in both Kyle and Mike Shanahan's offenses.

Aside from them, Fred Davis and Chris Cooley are both studs. Santana Moss has always been a solid player and a good deep threat to compliment the bigger guys like Thomas and Kelly. McNabb will have a large variety of weapons to work with and a solid defense as well.

Unfortunately the offensive line is still complete crap and the running game looks old and fragile, but you can go a long way towards fixing that problem by getting a dependable tackle at 4. If nothing else, McNabb will be an excellent bridge while Washington searches for a better QB prospect in the stronger classes of 2011 and 2012. I'll take that any day of the week over a very iffy guy like Colt McCoy with that 37th overall pick.

Steve in Spain said...

And now Philly fans can resume their regularly scheduled program of booing McNabb 16 games a year.

I think the biggest blunder of the offseason will be SF's decision to go after David Carr (!) instead of McNabb. SF probably wouldn't have had to outbid Washington given that the Skins are division rivals - the 49ers second-rounder and a 2011 pick should've done the trick. Why Singletary wasn't interested is a wonder to me.

Patrick said...

Hey Kip, I just want to say I absolutely love all of your feedback and insight. Do you think you might put together a mock draft?

Anonymous said...

Big ripple effects on the draft for sure with that crazy trade. Now with the Simms trade done,I bet we trade up to #2 with Detroit now,give up #6 and some change to them, and pick up McCoy or Suh. Still work a deal for Marshall, draft a SS and let Gibbs use all the rest to find some linemen that fit.

Anonymous said...

As a Niners fan living in Seattle, no way do they take Claussen. That would be a guaranteed disaster. Niners have some major holes to fill, esp. on their O-line, and they're looking to win the NFC West this year (with Arizona and the Rams in tatters, and the Seahawks looking vulnerable). They can't afford to use one of their 1st rounders on a guy who won't step right in and contribute.

Look for them to take a lineman and a defensive back. And hope the Seahawks take Claussen and Spiller, because that would guarantee the Niners the division this year.

Anonymous said...

All this becomes moot as Clausen goes off the board as number one overall to the Rams. As T Holt said they would, read up on the rams they value Clausen over Bradford. I see Bradford making a huge fall to buffalo, jags or farther maybe steelers or Cardinals. New England would be in the mix but Bradfords short coming are to much for NE to deal with in round one. Bradford is a project and will be best warming bench for a few years, although DR Robato will never be a elite post season QB.

I'm not a Peton Manning fan his poor footwork and panic style of unloading the ball to anyone covered or not when pressured leads to great letdowns in the post season. Bradford isn't a Peton Manning on his best day's but shares his weaknesses. He's to robotic for Holmgren, just not good enough pocket mobillity to be a post season player. Not a west coast QB!!!!

Remember you heard it here Bradford makes a huge fall. San Fran Already has a better QB than Bradford. A very similar player but a lot more developed in Smith. Just for the love of God, Budda, Ala who ever just don't let this A-hole end up a hawk.

Anonymous said...

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Brendan said...

Couple thoughts on this move. Once again this proves my point that I was making a couple of weeks ago that signing a quality QB via FA is a lot more likely than people give it credit for.

Having said that, this is a great move for Washington and reiterates the fact that they are either taking O-line or trading down.

I don't think this changes much. I think that the hawks still have to be looking at Bradford/Suh/McCoy (not likely at all) first and then Morgan/ Bryant/ Spiller maybe Bulaga.

Also, Peter King of SI said that Scheider loves Bulaga FYI

Brendan said...

Little bit away from the topic but did anyone read this article in the Seattle Times?

Any thoughts on the article because I think this guy is a huge idiot?

Also most people that I have talked to about the Whitehurst trade do not like it? I don't get it. Well I understand that most people I talk to are more casual fans and get swayed by public perception alot more than someone like myself.

I also think that it is somewhat funny that the Eagles are getting positive press for going with Kolb while the Hawks get hammered by getting Whitehurst. How big is the difference between Whitehurst and Kolb and both situations seem pretty similar to me.

(Don't get me wrong here I do think that Kolb is better or at least more proven than Whitehurst is)

Any thoughts on either especially the Seattle TImes article?

A-R-N-F said...

You're comparing a guy who replaced McNabb for two games and threw 700 yards, to a guy whose claim to fame is that he got to ask Phillip Rivers and Billy Volek how they like their coffee every Sunday.