“The [Redskins'] medical staff is going to be key to this, more so than the scouts and the evaluators,” Kiper said Thursday of Tagovailoa, who is recovering from November hip surgery. “They’re the key. If they sign off, you take Tua at two. There’s no doubt about that. You take Tua. You don’t trade the pick. You don’t take Chase Young. You take Tua. And if Haskins turns out to be better, then great. Then [you] can trade Tua.”
Kiper defended his take Friday during another appearance on ESPN.
“It’s all about quarterbacks,” he said. “In [the NFC East], particularly, you think about Dak Prescott, Carson Wentz, Daniel Jones. If you have the fourth-best quarterback in the division, you can forget about the playoffs or anything beyond that. It’s all about quarterback.”
“You need to hit on the quarterback,” Kiper continued. “If Haskins is the guy, you can trade Tua. If it’s Tua, then you [trade] Haskins, no problem. You got to get the quarterback. You can have Chase Young and three other Chase Youngs; it’s not going to be the difference.”
Haskins, the No. 15 pick in last year’s draft, threw seven touchdowns and seven interceptions during his rookie season, which included seven starts. Tagovailoa said Tuesday he expects to be cleared by doctors next month to resume full-scale football activities. If Kiper ran the Redskins, he would draft the former Alabama star and then not play him as a rookie.
“I would let him sit for a year, heal that body up and then come back in 2021 ready to go,” Kiper said. “That’s the key, I think, is how he’s handled once he gets to that organization. Haskins could be the quarterback. If he seizes control and he’s the guy, then you can trade a healthy Tua, who sat and got better physically. I think it’s a no-lose situation there if you hit on one of those quarterbacks. If one of those quarterbacks is great, nobody’s going to look back and say, ‘Why did you take Tua?’ ”
Plenty of others disagree. “Get Up” co-host Emmanuel Acho replied that the Redskins taking Tagovailoa with the second pick would be “incomprehensible.”
“The addition of Tua is a subtraction of Chase Young and Dwayne Haskins,” Acho said. “To me it doesn’t make any sense. … You don’t pass on Chase Young, a surefire, guaranteed, physical freakazoid.”
Meanwhile, Redskins Coach Ron Rivera said this week that he and his staff are “not closing the door on anything” as they continue to evaluate their options ahead of the draft.
“You don’t know what’s going to happen in front of you, and you don’t know what’s going to happen with you,” Rivera said Wednesday at the NFL scouting combine, where the Redskins were scheduled to meet with Young, as well as Burrow and Tagovailoa, among others.
NFL analyst Michael Silver tweeted Friday that the Redskins drafting a quarterback with the second pick “is a very real possibility, especially if Tua is deemed healthy.”
“If Tua is in fact there at two, if they are satisfied that he is healthy, which is an evolving thing, they absolutely will consider doing that,” Silver said on NFL Network. “ … It’s pretty understandable that a new coach may see the guy they picked in the first round last year differently than the people who took him.”
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