The Washington Redskins have completed a blockbuster trade with the St. Louis Rams to acquire the #2 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft. In exchange, the Rams will receive the #6 pick in the 2012 Draft, along with the Redskins second round pick (#39 overall), and Washington’s first round selections in 2013 and 2014.
Yeah, you could say they’re all in.
There’s no question this trade will put the legacy of Mike Shanahan squarely in the crosshairs and officially ends the ridiculous era of John Beck and Rex Grossman in DC. The Redskins will undoubtedly take Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III unless the Colts pull a Mario Williams and Reggie Bush-esque draft day change of heart and pass on Andrew Luck. A trade of this magnitude is going to change the course of the Redskins over the next decade, for better or worse.
The deal has major ramifications in both reality and fantasy. We examine the parties involved and their impact in dynasty leagues.
Robert Griffin III
His draft stock obviously skyrocketed over the past month and the Redskins paid for it. It was obvious that Peyton Manning had little interest in joining the Redskins, so they had to move quickly to keep other teams like the Browns from getting that pick. Assuming he ends up in Washington, there are mixed feelings.
Griffin does fit the mold of a successful Mike Shanahan quarterback. He’s mobile, athletic, accurate and most importantly, smart. While all the draft pundits seem to be drooling over his physical ability, people are bypassing the fact that he really a well put together athlete who is extremely cerebral when it comes to everything in life, including playing quarterback.
The Redskins don’t boast a tremendous offense to help him out at the moment. Their offensive line is average, as indicated by the 5.9% sack rate (the NFL average was around 6.7%). However, you have to consider Grossman and Beck were not the most fleet of foot, as well.
The skill players surrounding Griffin aren’t exactly scaring other teams. Leonard Hankerson is an emerging receiver who may have the best room to grow with Griffin at the helm. Santana Moss will turn 34 later this Summer and he seems to be losing a step. Anthony Armstrong, Niles Paul, Aldrick Robinson and Terrence Austin are all question marks based on age or inexperience. Fred Davis could be a good beneficiary of this as Chris Cooley is not expected back.
At running back, the addition of Griffin is actually pretty good news for Roy Helu and Evan Royster. While any back in a Mike Shanahan offense tends to have the shelf life of an anti-Twinkie, the Redskins will have precious few draft picks over the next few years to risk using one a running back. There’s always a chance the regime takes one late or try to lure someone through free agency, but owners of Helu and Royster have to feel good about this development.
As far as Griffin himself goes, he has a lot of work to do. No rookie quarterback ever finds himself in a perfect position to be successful and this one is certainly far from it. The Redskins did save up a bunch of cap space in order to lure free agents and they may be under more pressure than any team to actually get someone like Vincent Jackson, Mario Manningham, Brandon Lloyd, or another good weapon for RGIII.
Regardless, Griffin must be considered in the top four of a rookie draft, along with Trent Richardson, Justin Blackmon and Luck.
The St. Louis Rams
What a haul.
Having Sam Bradford in tow and now giving new Coach Jeff Fisher an arsenal that includes two additional future first round picks and an extra second round pick in this year’s draft just for moving down four spots (where they’d likely get the same player they had targeted at #2) is an absolute dream scenario for the Rams.
With the 6th pick in the draft, it wouldn’t surprise anyone to see the Rams take Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon. His workout yesterday left few major questions and likely assured him of being the first receiver selected.
Meanwhile, the Rams are going to be major players in the draft for the next three years as the boast multiple first round picks in both 2013 and 2014. Imagine if Griffin doesn’t perform well and those picks end up being of the premium variety – this could end up being a Herschel Walker-like haul for St. Louis.
The Cleveland Browns
Swing and a miss.
The Browns reportedly upped their effort to get Griffin at the last minute and thought they had a deal done that featured three first round picks as well. However, their reluctance to add #22 in THIS year’s draft may have been their undoing.
The Browns are a mess and need a major offensive overhaul. They could target Trent Richardson early in the draft, but the smart money may be on them trading back a bit and looking at quarterbacks like Ryan Tannehill or Brandon Weeden. They could also step up their effort to land Matt Flynn.
It was simply not a good night for Cleveland. The Big Show has his work cut out for him.
The Miami Dolphins
One shoe has dropped for Miami now. They’d been a sleeper to trade up for Griffin, but that option is now gone.
Just think about this for a second.
If they don’t land Peyton Manning and the Browns land Matt Flynn, this offseason will go down as a disaster in South Beach. They could still end up with a decent rookie from the draft, but the allure of the Dolphins would be tarnished quite a bit after losing out on Manning, Flynn, Jeff Fisher AND Jim Harbaugh.
How do you think Griffin will perform in DC?