The 2018 NFL Draft is officially over and the Washington Redskins added a lot of talented young players. The Redskins got much better through the draft and will be excited to see their draft picks on the field in the near future. Here are the club’s 2018 NFL Draft grades.
1st Round (13th overall): Da’Ron Payne, Defensive Tackle, Alabama
Washington was putrid against the run last year particularly after last year’s first round pick Jonathan Allen was injured. This was the only pick I got right in my mock draft. Da’Ron Payne is the most complete defensive tackle in this year’s draft. Last year Washington selected Allen (1st round) and Ryan Anderson (2nd round), two collegiate teammates at Alabama. Now their teammate at Alabama Payne joins the Redskins as well. Selecting a defensive tackle is not glamorous, but Washington badly needed reinforcements on the defensive line. Payne was not overly productive in college but he an incredible game against Clemson in the college football playoff earlier this year. Payne is a player with a lot of upside who will only get better.
2nd Round (59th overall): Derrius Guice, Running Back, LSU
Washington traded back in the 2nd round and still got arguably the second best running back in the draft after Saquon Barkley. Guice filled in for Leonard Fournette in 2016 when Fournette was injured and proved he could handle the starting job. Guice led the SEC with 1,387 yards and 15 touchdowns. That is pretty impressive considering he only started six games. The first-team All-SEC selection set a school record with 285 yards against Texas A&M and averaged 7.6 yards per carry (5th in the NCAA). Injuries limited Guice in 2017 and he was not able to show off his top end speed until LSU’s bowl game.
According to NFL Insider Ian Rapoport the former LSU Tiger fell due to concerns over him being immature.
Why is #LSU RB Derrius Guice sliding? Sources describe him as immature, high-maintenance. His visits did not go well. Some incidents in college teams found out about that were not reported.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 28, 2018
According to Gabe Fertitta, one of his high school coaches, that is simply not the case. Fertitta said that Guice is far from perfect but he was a good kid. There is a lot that the press does not report on. “Like, ‘My kid noticed Derrius bowling and said hello, and he came over and bowled with him for 30 minutes.’ Or, ‘Derrius went out to a youth football game and threw the ball around with my kid and his teammates.’ That doesn’t get press,” said Fertitta.
Washington got tremendous value with this pick. NFL Network analyst Bucky Brooks is really high on Guice.
I don't know why Derrius Guice fell down the charts but the @Redskins got a 1st-rd talent on Day 2. DG is a rugged runner with a blue-collar game built on grit, toughness & violence. He is the best runner the 'Skins have featured at RB1 since Clinton Portis. For real. #NFLDraft
— Bucky Brooks (@BuckyBrooks) April 28, 2018
3rd Round (74th overall): Geron Christian, Offensive Tackle, Louisville
Washington originally did not have a 3rd round selection due to the Alex Smith trade. The Redskins traded back in the 2nd round and acquired a 3rd round pick and selected Geron Christian. Christian played left tackle during his time at Louisville, but he can play right tackle as well. The former high school basketball player has tremendous footwork, good athleticism and long arms. Washington currently has Pro Bowl left tackle Trent Williams and right tackle Morgan Moses firmly entrenched in their positions. That means that Christian will be under no pressure to start right away. Christian is a solid pick who has a lot of potential.
4th Round (109th overall): Troy Apke, Safety, Penn State
The most notable thing about Troy Apke is his speed.
Troy Apke, S, Penn State, fourth-round pick. Ran a 4.34 40 at the combine. Mayock just called him an “Athletic freak"
— Rich Tandler (@TandlerNBCS) April 28, 2018
Apke should excel on special teams for Washington and could become a starter in time. The Penn State grad only became a starter as a senior so there is not a lot of tape on him. It is unlikely that he will start immediately due to his below average instincts and tackling. His limited starting experience at the collegiate level means that there is some risk with Apke, but with solid coaching he can become a starting safety.
5th Round (163rd overall): Tim Settle, Defensive Tackle, Virginia Tech
Washington continued to add talent on the defensive line with the addition of Tim Settle. According to Redskins insider Ben Standig Washington was looking at Tim Settle on day two of the draft.
I'd been told Redskins were looking at Settle as a possible round 3 pick (This was before they acquired one). https://t.co/IlEkQtIKmL
— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) April 28, 2018
The former Hokie is a player that coaches love. Settle plays with a tremendous amount of energy, power and never gives up on a play. He is a versatile player who can play across the defensive line. His biggest weaknesses are his issues with weight loss and conditioning as well as his hand placement. All of those are fixable.
Settle offers the Redskins tremendous value in the fifth round and should immediately become a part of the defensive line rotation.
6th Round (197th overall): Shaun Dion Hamilton, Linebacker, Alabama
Washington traded up in the 6th round to select yet another Alabama player in Shaun Dion Hamilton. Hamilton tore his ACL just prior to the end of the 2016 season. His 2017 season ended due to a knee fracture. Injuries are a concern with Hamilton, but that will not bother the Redskins especially this late in the draft. It is possible that Hamilton will never become a starter, but he can develop into a solid role player. The Alabama grad likely fell a few rounds due to injury concerns but offers a lot of value with little risk. With Washington’s depth at linebacker he could essentially have a red-shirt season if he needs more time to recover from injuries.
7th Round (241st overall): Greg Stroman, Cornerback, Virginia Tech
Greg Stroman was an extremely versatile player in college. As a freshman at Virginia Tech he played in all three phases of a game. Throughout the rest of his collegiate career he played cornerback and contributed as a kick off and punt returner. During his senior campaign Stroman was a first-team All-ACC selection on defense and an honorable mention selection as a return specialist. Stroman is a ball-hawk who does a great job of watching the receiver as well as the quarterback. His biggest weaknesses are his below average strength and skinny frame that makes him vulnerable to tall receivers. This is a former NFL defensive back’s evaluation of him via NFL.com:
I worry more about how he will hold up as an NFL tackler because of how thin he is. I’m not worried about the coverage part at all. He’s been challenged by big guys, fast guys and big fast guys in that conference and he’s done really well against all of them.
Stroman is a great pick this late in the draft. He should challenge immediately for playing time as a returner.
7th Round (256th overall): Trey Quinn, Wide Receiver, SMU
Trey Quinn will forever be remembered as Mr. Irrelevant, assigned each year to the NFL Draft’s final selection. According to SB Nation Quinn will receive a number of perks due to his selection. “Quinn will now get a trip to Disneyland that comes with an arrival party and other festivities. He will also receive the Lowsman Trophy — a parody of the Heisman Trophy — and a custom Rolex watch.”
— Washington Redskins (@Redskins) April 28, 2018
Quinn’s first claim to fame was through baseball at the 2008 Little League World Series.
— Jake Kring-Schreifels (@jakeks19) April 28, 2018
NFL Draft analyst Jon Ledyard had a 4th round grade on Quinn.
Trey Quinn had a 4th rd grade from me haha. He's good. Knows what he's doing and is pro ready. Tested pretty well too. He can absolutely make that team
— Jon Ledyard (@LedyardNFLDraft) April 28, 2018
Quinn has great ball skills, but his lack of athleticism will limit his ceiling. He should be a slot receiver due to his route running and solid hands. He led the nation with 114 catches in 2017 and gained 1,236 yards receiving and scored 13 times. Quinn, who originally signed with the LSU Tigers out of high school, is pretty good final pick of the draft.
The Washington Redskins should be much better against the run in 2018 thanks to Da’Ron Payne, Tim Settle, and the healthy return of Jonathan Allen. Washington got arguably the steal of the draft in Derrius Guice who could be the Redskins best running back since Clinton Portis. The Redskins front office clearly loves players from Alabama.
— Chris Renkel CBS 42 (@Chris_Renkel) April 28, 2018
Washington got tremendous value throughout the draft and got much better at a number of positions. It was one of the best drafts by the team in recent memory.