An argument could be made that Shanahan should use the majority of the picks, including the first, to address the Redskins’ worst defensive performance since 1954.
And it’s downright ridiculous that the franchise again finds itself in such a weakened position at quarterback — the game’s most important position. Only a little more than a year ago, Shanahan stood at a lectern and compared McNabb favorably to Hall of Famer John Elway. Shanahan expressed confidence the Redskins had a quarterback capable of playing at a high level for several seasons.
A team that has finished last in the NFC East three consecutive seasons certainly could have used the second- and fourth-round picks Shanahan sent to division-rival Philadelphia for McNabb.
Snyder privately continues to tell people he still believes McNabb is a good fit for the Redskins and that he wants the 12-year veteran to remain with the club. But both Mike and Kyle Shanahan, Washington’s offensive coordinator, want McNabb out, so they may decide to select their next quarterback as soon as possible in the draft.
I’m not expecting Shanahan to deliver a draft comparable to the organization’s 12-round haul in 1981, in which it added Mark May, Russ Grimm, Dexter Manley, Charlie Brown, Darryl Grant and Clint Didier. That group helped to provide the foundation for two of Joe Gibbs’s three Super Bowl victories.
With many picks and many holes, though, it’s fair to expect Shanahan to bring in a class similar to that of the New York Giants’ eight-man squad in 2007. Steve Smith, Kevin Boss and Ahmad Bradshaw contributed to a Super Bowl championship as rookies and are still productive.
Shanahan missed the playoffs his last three seasons leading the Broncos and again last season with the Redskins. His actions have stirred doubt about the three-year plan he brought to Washington, and now he faces crucial decisions in the draft.
Asked before last season whether the Redskins were as bad as their record indicated under former coach Jim Zorn, Shanahan essentially said the record tells the whole story. Well, Shanahan’s recent record is what it is. And this draft could help determine whether Shanahan is capable of being who he once was.