So often, TV sticks to a strict regimen of "out with the old, in with the new." Yet year in and year out, there is one thing that we can hang our hats on ... Mel Kiper's hair (pun intended).
You know what what means. NFL Draft talk has kicked into high gear, and with the East-West Shrine Game and Senior Bowl upon us, get ready to be overloaded with the monster that is the 2011 NFL Draft. Especially with the labor strife on the horizon, the NFL Draft will be depended on by everyone to be both a distraction as well as the cornerstone offseason event on the NFL calendar.
As a Redskins fan, I have placed such a ridiculous emphasis on the draft that even my wife, who hails from Vermont, knows when it is and knows I will be as unavailable then as I am when the Redskins are at home. I have very obviously overcompensated in the Meringolo household, overcompensating for the fact that the Redskins have seemingly placed so little emphasis on the NFL Draft.
Some of you may be familiar with my ramblings on Mel Kiper and the over-the-top, insane coverage of an event that ushers in scores of players who will never, ever see the field. The truth is I can't get enough of it. By the time the NFL draft rolls around every year, I have not seen the Redskins participate in a major, televised event since the end of December. Free agency does not count, and with the impending lockout, it may very well not even provide us Washington fans with the splishes and splashes that tide us over each March.
So I embrace the NFL Draft in all its wonder and glory. I am at least two or three Bloody Mary's deep by the time the commissioner puts the No. 1 team on the clock.
But this year, I may have to be 5 or 6 deep if what I am hearing is true. Are the Redskins really considering taking a quarterback with their first round pick?
I find this to be extraordinarily troubling. Do we need a new franchise signal-caller? Oh yeah. Do we need a new hope under center to give us fans something to look forward to for the next decade? Without a doubt. But we have a laundry list of needs. We have more holes to fill than we have draft picks to fill them. Sound familiar?
In fact, we almost have more holes on the offensive line than we have draft picks to fill them. And this is precisely where we need to improve first before we bring in a mega-million dollar quarterback. Look, I could care less how Dan Snyder wastes his money, but it is simply asinine to guarantee a player tens of millions of dollars to come into the league and line up behind the offensive line we have. It would be the surest way to ensure our franchise quarterback learns what previous Redskin quarterbacks have learned so well: how to get the snot knocked out of you.
As of today, both Mel Kiper and Todd McShay have the Redskins taking Cam Newton. On one hand, importing that kind of elite talent is mouth-watering. The guy is a stud. And I rarely use "mouth-watering" and "stud" in the same paragraph. Uhhhh ... I mean I never do.
But if Tyron Smith, the offensive tackle from USC, is available at No. 10, that is who we should take. Bookend tackles would solidify our offense for years to come. Next year, we can bring in a huge talent at quarterback to stand behind an improved line.
Then again ... knowing the Redskins, we could trade that No. 10 pick by the time the draft gets here. Serenity Now!