Speaking at the 2017 League Meetings in Phoenix, team president Bruce Allen explained that Washington's draft process will be a joint effort.
Redskins President Bruce Allen said Sunday, in an interview with CSN Mid-Atlantic, that no one person in the front office will have the final say when it comes to selecting players for the upcoming NFL Draft.
When pressed on which person will ultimately make the decision to draft a player, Allen stated, "It will be the grade," referencing the draft grade the front office gives each college prospect.
"When we grade, we have all those arguments long before we set the boards," Allen said. "If two players end up having the same grade we will have that discussion long before the draft has starts to say who is going to be edged up a little bit. From the area scouts to the position coach to Scott Campbell, we will have that decision made long before the draft."
Allen made it a point to say that including everyone on the decision-making process has occurred for a while, dating back to when Mike Shanahan was head coach.
Current head coach Jay Gruden, who signed a contract extension last month, also has a key role in personnel, coordinating coaching reports and assisting with player boards as it gets closer to the draft. His opinion is taken into consideration about each college player, too.
"Our college guys are working really hard right now and they will come in a week early so we can set up the draft board to go forward," Allen said. "In free agency our coaches were absolutely involved and I think Alex Santos and Eric Shaffer did a tremendous job of recruiting these guys."
For the last couple of years, the Redskins have operated, much like other teams, under the pretenses of selecting the best player available in the draft, regardless of needs at a certain position.
When asked about this philosophy, Allen explained that the Redskins will continue to abide in their approach.
"It will be the grade," Allen said. "Every person here at the league meetings tell you they go by the grade unless they draft an X in the first round, they will not draft an X in the second round, third round, fourth round and fifth round. You go by the grade."
In that sense, the team's deficiencies at certain positions won't impact the way the group of scouts views any one player or the board. Assessments, in essence, are objective and unbiased towards areas the team feels could use more depth.
That includes the defensive line, which saw Chris Baker and Ricky Jean Francois leave but received replacements in Stacy McGee and Terrell McClain and re-signed Ziggy Hood. The team would still like to upgrade at the position in the draft, but believe in new defensive line coach Jim Tomsula getting the most out of the talent he's acquired and covets.
"I think adding Tomsula is going to affect our defensive line," Allen said. "I think that is a really good addition for us. We have to get the players that he is looking for to mold. Our defense, when it comes to stopping the run the last few years, isn't up to par. You can talk about anything you want with the Dallas Cowboys but they led the division in rushing and they led the division in stopping the run. You don't need an analytics team to point that out to you."