Newton will be at Redskins Park on April 15, his agent, Tony Paige said. The Redskins reportedly are among nine NFL teams that have interviews scheduled with the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback.
According to an ESPN report, the other eight teams that have visits scheduled with Newton are the Carolina Panthers, who hold the first pick in the draft, the Denver Broncos (second pick), Buffalo Bills (third pick), Cincinnati Bengals (fourth pick), Tennessee Titans (eighth), Minnesota Vikings (12th pick) and the Miami Dolphins (15th pick).
Paige said Newton had initial interviews with all 32 teams while at the NFL combine in February. The Redskins also had two representatives at Newton’s Pro Day at Auburn earlier this month.
The Redskins pick 10th overall in next month’s draft, so the chances of Newton falling to them don’t appear to be great. They could always try to trade up, but that involves giving up additional picks, and Washington already is without third- and fourth-rounders this year.
When asked on Tuesday about plans for an additional visit with Newton, Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan declined to divulge Washington's plans.
“We don’t discuss those things, for obvious reasons,” Shanahan said in his typical close-to-the-vest manner. “But we’ll have a number of players in for visits, and go to a number of places for some private workouts.”
So far, the known visits that the Redskins have scheduled are with Newton, Texas A&M linebacker Von Miller, Southern California right tackle Tyron Smith and Virginia Tech products Tyrod Taylor and Ryan Williams.
But Shanahan said it’s not uncommon for him to draft players he hasn’t interviewed.
“A lot of times you don’t want to show your hand,” Shanahan said with a grin. “I never talked to John Mobley. [In Denver] I took him at the 15th pick [in 1996] and after the draft, Jimmy Johnson called and said ‘Why did you not interview John Mobley?’ and I said ‘Because of guys like you.’ He was going to move up had he known we wanted Mobley. So you don’t want to show your hand.”
Shanahan also drafted Jay Cutler in Denver without holding an additional interview with him.
The most important thing in evaluating a player is game film, Shanahan says.
“Yep, that’s what you’re doing all the time. Game film,” Shanahan said. “Interviews just give you the opportunity to spend more time with a guy, become more comfortable. But you’ve got a lot of scouts, and position coaches have a lot of interviews throughout Indy [at the NFL combine], talking to them on the phone, so you get a good feel.”
Note: On Friday, the Redskins were awarded a compensatory seventh-round pick in this April’s draft, giving the team three selections in that round and eight draft choices overall.
The NFL awarded a total of 32 compensatory picks to 23 teams. They are generally awarded to teams that lost players in free agency.