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2020 NFL Draft Grades: Redskins Earn Straight A's For Selection Of DE Chase Young


The results are in: draft experts love the Redskins' selection of Chase Young.

With the No. 2 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, Washington added the edge rusher out of Ohio State, who was largely seen as the top overall prospect in the class. For months, the NFL community linked Young to the burgundy and gold; the Redskins made it official Thursday night.

Here's how draft pundits graded the move:

Analysis: "Washington doesn't really need Young. The team has taken defensive linemen in the first round in three consecutive drafts, most recently Montez Sweat last year. If the team has a strength, that is it. Still, Young is overwhelmingly the best player in the draft. He has every trait you want in a 4-3 defensive end, from length to an incredibly fast first move."

Analysis: "The Redskins get the best player in the 2020 NFL Draft in this transcendent pass-rusher who had 16.5 sacks in 12 games in his final season at Ohio State. Young (6-5, 264 pounds) is an explosive, game-changing disruptor with more pro upside than two other former Buckeyes, Joey Bosa and Nick Bosa. He is a great cornerstone for coach Ron Rivera's defensive rebuild."

Analysis: "The Redskins likely could've secured a haul of picks by trading out of this spot, but they made the right choice to stay put to grab a potentially transformative player with the ability to change the complexion of the entire defense. Young is my top-ranked prospect in this draft, a game-wrecking force off the edge who should provide the same type of early impact we saw from Nick Bosa in San Francisco last season. The Buckeyes star boasts elite first-step explosiveness and plenty of power, able to threaten the edge and bend around the corner or counter back inside using a professional-level repertoire of pass-rush moves.

"In the past two seasons, Young has tallied a combined 26 sacks, 35.5 tackles for a loss, eight pass deflections, and seven forced fumbles in 26 games—and he set a single-season Buckeyes record with 16.5 sacks in 2019 alone. Put him on a line next to Jonathan Allen, Da'Ron Payne, Matthew Ioannidis, Ryan Kerrigan, and Montez Sweat, and Washington's going to be pretty damn formidable on that side of the ball."

Analysis: "Young is the sort of player who forces opponents to alter their game plans. There are typically only two or three non-quarterbacks per draft class capable of that."

Analysis: "This feels like a bit of a luxury, given that the front seven might be one of the sturdier areas of the team. But Young is a potential game changer, especially in the hands of Ron Rivera and Jack Del Rio. The Redskins didn't overthink it. Even with the temptation of Tua, or a trade possibility, sticking here and picking Yahoo Sports' No. 1 overall prospect is a winning move."

Analysis: "The power, the speed, reminds me of Julius Peppers. He's an exceptional athlete. It's a passer and pass rushers league. Last year they got their passer and this year they got the pass rusher."

Analysis: "The Redskins received trade offers from the Falcons and perhaps other teams, but they were never moving out of this spot. Charlie Campbell reported prior to the combine that Washington was absolutely smitten with Young and didn't want to trade the No. 2 pick. The Redskins believe Young can average double-digit sacks per season, and they might just be right about that. He's a supreme talent, and Washington would've been foolish to pass up the opportunity of having him on its roster for the next decade."

Analysis: "Washington entered this draft with many needs, and pass rusher was not one of them. Tenth-year veteran Ryan Kerrigan still offers quality burst and bendability, and the team spent a first-round pick last season on Mississippi State's Montez Sweat. Inside, defensive tackle Matt Ioannidis is coming off a quietly strong 2019 season, and alongside him are relatively recent first-round picks Jonathan Allen (2017) and Da'Ron Payne ('18). So no, Washington did not need Chase Young, but that doesn't make them wrong for taking him. Sometimes talent is too immense to pass up. Many scouts see Young as the type of explosive difference-maker who only comes along once every few years. No team has ever rued having too many quality pass rushers, especially not if that team runs a 4-3 gap-based, zone-oriented scheme like new head coach Ron Rivera and defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio are expected to install."

Analysis: "Look, Young is the best defender in the class and will be a fantastic pro. However, I am a strong believer in former Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and believe he should have been the pick. Given Tua's injury history, though, I don't blame them for taking Young instead, so I'm giving them a strong grade. If Dwayne Haskins becomes a standout quarterback and Young, well, chases opponents' quarterbacks to lead the team to the playoffs on a regular basis -- then I'll be wrong. And Washington fans will be very happy that I was."

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