After them, though, Washington should have the freedom to select from several quality corners. Mayock, former NFL scouts Dan Shonka and Russ Lande and the scouting service Scouts, Inc. generally agree that Mississippi State’s Johnthan Banks and Darius Slay and Boise State’s Jamar Taylor are the best remaining cornerbacks entering Round 2. Slay would fit well as the Redskins‘ second-round pick, according to Nolan Nawrocki, Pro Football Weekly’s draft analyst.
The choice would depend on coaches’ and scouts’ particular preference.
“Forget the size for a minute; you have to be able to have those long arms, and certainly you have to be able to turn the wheel and contort your body and react to quickness,” said Jon Gruden, ESPN analyst and former Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach.
“The zone corner, you see it in their schemes. Can they reroute the wide receiver, keep vision on the ball, can they tackle? Are they good in primary force? Do they understand where their help is?”
If the Redskins do select a defensive back, the next question would be how quickly he could contribute.
“A lot has to do with their awareness, how sharp they are, relative to their football-related intelligence,” Shanahan said. “Some guys are all football. Other guys are, maybe, a man-to-man coverage guy, and it’s easier if a guy is more well-rounded and he understands zone concept, man concept. Depending on the play and the system you’re using depends on how quickly he can get on the field.”
Considering how the Redskins‘ pass defense played last season and the long-term roster outlook, the newcomer would at least have a strong opportunity.