Another day, another NFL Mock Draft to analyze. One theme that I keep seeing over and over again is the Redskins taking a quarterback. I'm not sure if they need a quarterback more than any other team in the draft, if their need happens to match up with the value of players available when they might be selected or if the public nature of their quarterback situation is influencing the Mocker's minds. But for whatever reason, mock draft after mock draft has tabbed the Redskins to take a quarterback.
SB Nation's draft blog Mocking The Draft just released their newest mock version and they have the Redskins taking Cam Newton.
Rex Grossman is Washington's starting quarterback. Does anyone really think Grossman is the long-term answer for Washington? What he could be is a stop gap for a developmental quarterback. If that's the case, there may be no better developmental player in this draft than Newton.
Their logic is sound in analyzing the Redskins need for a quarterback, I'm just not sure that Newton is the best prospect or just the best quarterback available. It's worth noting that Blaine Gabbert, the Missouri quarterback who has been linked to the Redskins in various other mocks, is already off the board by the time the Redskins pick in this one.
The big question is whether or not Cam Newton's style of play will translate to the NFL game. He has all the physical tools one would look for in a quarterback, but there have been many players like him who dominated in college but failed to make a serious impact in the pros. I would like to think that he is different than those players, but there really isn't any way to be sure.
If the Redskins feel that Newton is the type of player who could succeed at the next level, then I think he represents the best possible situation for the Redskins at this pick. Nothing instills hope into a fanbase more than bringing on a "quarterback of the future," and one with Newton's athletic ability would certainly bring a lot of optimism to the franchise. Having said that, if he turns out to be a bust, then it could set the franchise back five years or more.
If this was a Madden franchise that I was running, I would definitely take Newton. But the stakes are considerably higher here. There are other positions of need that the Redskins can fill over quarterback if they feel a better prospect is still on the board. Drafting by position is what keeps teams near the top of the draft, it's always safest to just take the best talent available. If that happens to be a quarterback, than so be it. But I just hope the Redskins aren't married to the idea of getting their quarterback of the future, when they should be looking to just improve the team the best way they can.