The Washington Post

In NFL mock draft, writers like defensive linemen

What happens when you get a reporter from each of the NFL’s 32 cities in a virtual room and conduct a mock NFL draft? Sam Farmer, the Los Angeles Times’ NFL writer, did just that, calling writers who cover the teams on a daily basis in the order in which their teams will pick and asking them to make the pick. The results were heavy on defensive players, with 20 selected.

Fourteen of those were linemen.

In a draft with quarterbacks of questionable NFL talents and plenty of teams in need of QBs, Ryan Mallett of Arkansas and Colin Kaepernick of Nevada were passed over entirely in the first round.

J.J. Watt at No. 10? (Morry Gash /AP/AP)

The first pick, by the Charlotte Observer’s Darin Gantt, was Auburn quarterback Cam Newton. There’s been a lot of discussion about Newton’s ability to play in the NFL as well as Panthers GM Marty Hurney’s traditional reluctance to draft a QB. “They'll listen to trade offers,” Gantt says, “but they've got to fix their quarterback problem.”

The Redskins pick at No. 10 and Post writer Rick Maese went with Wisconsin defensive end J.J. Watt. “The Redskins need another pass rusher to beef up their newly installed 3-4 defense,” Maese told Farmer. “Watt is a good fit.”

Is he? The Redskins have so many needs that it’s hard to go wrong with this pick. But is a defensive player the way to go?


Redskins’ options: The Insider

Analysis: A position-by-position look

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.


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