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Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 04/22/2011

Redskins should use 10th pick in NFL draft to bolster their defense

Here’s what I’m thinking: the Washington Redskins will try to trade down out of that 10th spot to pick up an extra draft pick. But the challenge is that the trade must be based strictly on picks in this draft or future ones.

Usually a team can leverage a player on the roster to bolster the trade but, because of the lockout, there will be no offerings of Donovan McNabb or other players who could make a trade more attractive. So, it would appear that unless there’s a player on the draft board who a team picking after the Redskins really feels it has to have, chances are the Redskins are stuck with the 10th pick.

The rumors that swirl most around draft time tend to be about what player and position will be selected with a specific selection, with plenty of talk about the quarterback situation, as well.

I’ve maintained that this team is closer to having a better defense than it is to having a strong offense. It’s going to take a long time to build this offense, so the Redskins should move toward completing their defense.

Washington made a very good move by adding O.J. Atogwe before the lockout. His skill at free safety will really help this team. The Redskins would be wise to use that 10th pick on a true space eater for the defensive line.

You may ask, ‘Why draft a defensive tackle and not a quarterback?’ Drafting a defensive tackle with the ability to eat up two and three blockers changes the whole dynamic of the defense.

Brian Orakpo has faced double- and sometimes even triple-team blocking — a stud defensive tackle will make a team pay every time if the attention of the offensive line is on the outside as opposed to him on the inside. One man should very rarely be able to block a serious nose tackle.

Plus, the integration of a nose guard will be much easier and will take less time than any other position. A drafted rookie would have the ability to start and make a difference immediately.

This team needs that boost desperately and, even if it struggles to win this year, it will be closer to having most of the parts of a dominant defense in place in years to come.

This defense already has some awesome talent, LaRon Landry, if not for his injury, was up for defensive MVP; Orakpo had a solid year and has plenty more ahead; and DeAngelo Hall was a consistent playmaker last season.

If the Redskins can’t trade the 10th pick, I say they should make a selection to bolster the defensive line.

By  |  11:00 AM ET, 04/22/2011

 
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